Colorado St. 31, Montana St. 10
FORT COLLINS, Colo. (AP) _ E.J. Watson rushed for 130 yards and a touchdown as Colorado State beat Division I-AA Montana State 31-10 Saturday.
It marked the sixth 100-yard rushing effort by the 217-pound Watson, a senior fullback.
His 1-yard touchdown run early in the first quarter gave Colorado State a 7-0 lead the Rams never relinquished despite Montana State’s near domination of the second half.
The defending Western Athletic Conference champions piled up a 21-0 lead in the first half behind Watson’s running and the passing of sophomore quarterback Moses Moreno, who is battling with junior college transfer Daren Wilkinson for the starting job.
Moreno connected with Eli Workman for a 39-yard touchdown pass with 4:30 to go in the half before he was lifted in favor of Wilkinson in the last series before halftime.
The Rams made it 14-0 when Steve Standifer intercepted Jeff Tuss’ pass and returned it 14 yards to the end zone.
Moreno had five completions in 12 attempts for 102 yards when he was relieved by Wilkinson. But he was sent back in in the fourth quarter after Wilkinson threw his second interception of the game. Wilkinson wound up 3-of-11 for 36 yards. Moreno finished 6-for-16 and 105 yards.
Montana State, of the Big Sky Conference, dominated much of the second half, but managed only 10 points, on a 32-yard field goal by Eric Melone and a 78-yard interception return by Omar Turner off Wilkinson late in the third quarter.
Turner also intercepted a pass by Wilkinson in the fourth quarter.
The Bobcats missed an excellent scoring opportunity in the third quarter after Tuss had driven Montana State 66 yards to the Colorado State 5. The drive ended when Tuss’ fourth-down pass was dropped by Eric Hopkins in the end zone.