Griz Slow to Start; Heat Up in Second Half to Beat Valpo - KULR8.com | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Griz Slow to Start; Heat Up in Second Half to Beat Valpo

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At times wasn't pretty. But in the end, the Montana Grizzly offense was effective enough to beat the Valparaiso Crusaders 45-23 Saturday in Washington-Grizzly.

Starting quarterback Reese Phillips, who was making his first collegiate start, went 27-38 for 381 yards and four touchdowns. He also threw one interception and fumbled once on a quarterback keeper. At times, Phillips looked composed. And at times, especially in the first half, the new Montana QB looked rattled. 

Phillips said afterwords that it felt good for him to get hit again. After leading the offense to a touchdown on the first possession of the game, the Griz did not score a touchdown until the end of the second quarter. 

Jeremy Calhoun, back playing his first full game in a long time after suffering a concussion last season, ran the ball 20 times for 78 yards. The running back also had two touchdowns from one yard out. 

But the star of the game was wide receiver Jerry Louie-McGee. The sophomore wide receiver from Coeur D'Alene took his first catch 63 yards, and then in the second half, caught two touchdowns from Phillips. Montana receiving records will be falling soon. 

Griz wide receiver Samori Toure hauled in his first collegiate touchdown catch from 14-yards out. Junior Keenan Curran, after missing an potential big play due to a drop, made an incredible catch for his first touchdown of the season from 45 yards out. 

But the surprising part of the game for Montana was on the defensive side of the ball. After getting burned numerous times last season off the big play, it was an emphasis throughout fall camp to rectify and fix coverage and gap mistakes. But Valparaiso had four plays over 20 yards, including three over 50 yards through the passing game to set up their first two field goals. 

The Montana defensive line did not provide a lot of pressure either throughout the game, only sacking Valpo quarterback Jason Seewald once and getting one quarterback hit. 

It will surely be an area of concentration this week as the Griz get ready to play the Washington Huskies in Seattle next Saturday. 

Stats Courtesy Montana Sports Information:

Quickie Statistics (4th quarter only)
Valparaiso vs Montana (Sep 02, 2017 at Missoula, Mont.)
VALPO UM
Score 10 21
FIRST DOWNS 5 9
RUSHES-YARDS (NET) 10-33 8-40
PASSING YDS (NET) 86 160
Passes Att-Comp-Int 9-2-0 11-10-0
TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS 19-119 19-200
Fumble Returns-Yards 0-0 0-0
Punt Returns-Yards 0-0 0-0
Kickoff Returns-Yards 2-38 1-4
Interception Returns-Yards 0-0 0-0
Punts (Number-Avg) 3-28.7 1-58.0
Fumbles-Lost 1-0 0-0
Penalties-Yards 0-0 2-20
Possession Time 07:15 07:45
Third-Down Conversions 1 of 6 1 of 3
Fourth-Down Conversions 1 of 1 0 of 1
Valparaiso Montana
Rushing No. Gain Loss Net TD Lg Avg
EARLEY 2 22 0 22 0 20 11.0
DUNCAN 7 23 14 9 0 8 1.3
CARTALES 1 2 0 2 0 2 2.0
Rushing No. Gain Loss Net TD Lg Avg
CALHOUN, Jeremy 2 16 0 16 0 10 8.0
JENSEN, Gresh 1 13 0 13 0 13 13.0
FAVORS,Treshawn 3 7 0 7 0 3 2.3
LEE, Alijah 2 4 0 4 0 3 2.0
Passing C-A-I Yds TD Long Sack
SEEWALD 1-6-0 20 0 20 0
DUNCAN 1-3-0 66 1 66 1
Passing C-A-I Yds TD Long Sack
PHILLIPS, Reese 7-8-0 142 3 45 0
JENSEN, Gresh 3-3-0 18 0 12 0
Receiving No. Yards TD Long
NORBERG 2 86 1 66
Receiving No. Yards TD Long
CURRAN, Keenan 2 62 1 45
LOUIE-McGEE, J. 2 42 2 25
LEE, Alijah 1 15 0 15
CALHOUN, Justin 1 12 0 12
Punting No. Yds Avg Long In20 TB
NG 3 86 28.7 42 0 0
Punting No. Yds Avg Long In20 TB
WILLIAMS, Eric 1 58 58.0 58 1 0
Punt Returns No. Yards TD Long Punt Returns No. Yards TD Long
Kick Returns No. Yards TD Long
GESSINGER 1 21 0 21
CARTALES 1 17 0 17
Kick Returns No. Yards TD Long
TOURE, Samori 1 4 0 4
Tackles UA-A Total Sacks TFL
POLOSKEY 2-1 3 0.0 0.0
SKARECKY 0-3 3 0.0 0.0
Tackles UA-A Total Sacks TFL
BANKS, James 0-3 3 0.0 0.0
EPPERLY, Evan 1-1 2 0.0 0.0
Qtr Time Scoring Play V-H
1st 12:33 UM - CALHOUN, Jeremy 1 yd run (PURDY, Brandon kick), 5-77 1:23 0 - 7
09:34 VALPO - LATSONAS 23 yd field goal, 7-60 3:05 3 - 7
06:09 VALPO - LATSONAS 29 yd field goal, 6-73 2:41 6 - 7
03:02 UM - PURDY, Brandon 24 yd field goal, 9-61 3:06 6 - 10
2nd 08:20 VALPO - NAVARRO 33 yd pass from DUNCAN (LATSONAS kick), 8-59 4:04 13 - 10
03:24 UM - CALHOUN, Jeremy 1 yd run (PURDY, Brandon kick), 13-70 4:50 13 - 17
3rd 01:24 UM - TOURE, Samori 14 yd pass from PHILLIPS, Reese (PURDY, Brandon kick), 9-70 3:30 13 - 24
4th 13:56 UM - CURRAN, Keenan 45 yd pass from PHILLIPS, Reese (PURDY, Brandon kick), 3-66 0:49 0 - 7
12:17 UM - LOUIE-McGEE, J. 25 yd pass from PHILLIPS, Reese (PURDY, Brandon kick), 2-40 0:32 0 - 14
10:31 VALPO - NORBERG 66 yd pass from DUNCAN (LATSONAS kick), 5-77 1:40 7 - 14
05:50 UM - LOUIE-McGEE, J. 17 yd pass from PHILLIPS, Reese (PURDY, Brandon kick), 3-40 1:12 7 - 21
03:34 VALPO - LATSONAS 44 yd field goal, 8-42 2:12 10 - 21

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