Cameron Stingily ran for a career-high 266 yards and two scores as Northern Illinois remained undefeated with a 38-24 road win over Kent State on Saturday.
Northern Illinois (5-0, 1-0 Mid-American) trailed 24-21 in the third quarter but proceeded to score 17 unanswered points, beginning with a 22-yard touchdown run by James Spencer midway through the quarter. Spencer then scored on an 11-yard touchdown pass from Jordan Lynch, a Mount Carmel graduate, on the Huskies' following possession. Northern Illinois finished with 698 yards of total offense, 454 yards rushing.
Kent State (2-4, 1-2) took the lead early in the third with a 28-yard touchdown pass from Colin Reardon to Tyshon Goode but failed to score after that.
The game was a rematch of last season's conference title game, a 44-37 double-overtime win by Northern Illinois that helped propel the Huskies to an Orange Bowl berth.
Illinois State 35, Western Illinois 21: Crete-Monee grad Lance Lenior caught touchdown passes of 42 and 13 yards, but the Leathernecks (3-3, 1-1) fell to the Redbirds (2-3, 1-1) in Missouri Valley Conference play. Lenoir caught seven passes for 105 yards.
Illinois State's Jamal Towns (Thornton) caught five passes for 26 yards. Teammate Marshaun Coprich ran for a career-high three touchdowns.
Illinois State broke a 21-21 tie in the middle of the fourth quarter with a 14-yard touchdown pass from Blake Winkler to Milton Colbert. Coprich then ran for a 24-yard score late in the fourth to extend the Redbirds' lead to 35-21. Coprich finished with 124 yards rushing, also a career high.
The Redbirds led 14-0 at halftime behind a 4-yard touchdown pass from Winkler to Chick Chatham and a 1-yard scoring run by Coprich. A 6-yard touchdown run by Coprich in the third quarter then gave Illinois State a 21-7 lead.
Western Illinois tied the game with touchdown passes from Trenton Norvell on its next two possessions. Norvell finished with three touchdown passes but was just 11 for 28 for 139 yards.
Southern Illinois 27, South Dakota State 24: Kory Faulkner rushed for two touchdowns, passed for another and Thomas Kinney hit a pair of field goals to lift Southern Illinois to a Missouri Valley Conference win over South Dakota State.
The game, South Dakota State's 100th Hobo Day, was tight throughout with three ties and two lead changes. The Jackrabbits (3-3, 0-2) ended the first half ahead 17-10 after a Zach Zenner rushing TD, Justin Syrovatka field goal and Charles Elmore's 89-yard return of a Faulkner interception.
The Salukis (3-3, 1-1) responded two minutes after intermission when Faulkner hit John Lantz for a 59-yard scoring pass to tie. Faulkner ran in from the 3 in the final quarter. Kinney added field goals of 35 and 42 yards.
South Dakota State's Zenner scored from the 1, capping a six-play drive to close within 27-24, but a final drive ended on downs with 1:46 remaining.