Battlin' Bears Late Conversion Fails in Loss at No. 9 SOU - | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Battlin' Bears Late Conversion Fails in Loss at No. 9 SOU

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The Rocky Mountain College football team saw its chance at upsetting No. 9 Southern Oregon sail past a diving receiver in the closing minutes of a 24-23 loss on Saturday afternoon at Raider Stadium.

Rocky Mountain (3-3, 3-2 Frontier) had just driven 66 yards in 10 plays to pull within one on a 1-yard touchdown pass from Drew Korf to Max Gray. After both teams called a timeout, Korf’s pass on the 2-point conversion was out of the reach of Darneail Jenkins and the upset was halted.

The Battlin’ Bears had the chance at the win behind consecutive scoring drives in the fourth quarter. The first was a five play, 69-yard drive that ended with Korf finding Gray for a 12-yard score with 8:31 to play.

Rocky’s defense got the ball back on the ensuing possession when Kendell Jefferson stripped the ball from a Southern Oregon (5-0, 5-0) receiver and jumped on the loose ball at the Rocky 35-yard line.

Southern Oregon had opened a 14-point lead by scoring 17 straight points to begin the second half. Rocky led 10-7 at halftime, but the Raiders scored two touchdowns in the third quarter and then got a 48-yard field goal with 10:28 to play in the fourth.

The Raiders took a 7-0 lead at the 13:32 mark of the second quarter before Griff Amies made a 38-yard field goal for Rocky with 8:04 before halftime. Jacob Bakken would then score on a 4-yard rush with 5:56 to play in the first half for the Battlin’ Bears halftime advantage.

Each team recorded 21 first-downs in the game, but Southern Oregon had a 425-280 edge in total yards. Rocky ran for 176 yards and threw for another 204. SOU gained 323 yards through the air and 102 on the ground.

Bakken played most of the first three quarters for the Battlin’ Bears and finished 8 of 15 for 52 yards while running for another 58 yards and the one score. He had his string of 101 pass attempts without an interception snapped on the final play of the first half.

Korf ended the day at 13 of 18 for 152 yards and two touchdowns. He did most of his damage in the fourth quarter where he accounted for 134 yards passing.

Sam Sparks led the Rocky rushing attack with 60 yards on 12 carries. Gray finished with eight catches for 71 yards and those two touchdowns. Jenkins had five receptions for 62 yards.

Dallas Mack anchored the Rocky defense with 10 tackles. Keegan Fagan, Chase Bertelsen and Jake Tuivaiave added eight tackles apiece. Jefferson made two tackles and added an interception to his forced fumble and fumble recovery. Ryder Rice had two sacks.

SOU’s Tanner Trosin finished 27 of 44 for 323 yards and one touchdown. Matt Boudreaux made five catches for 116 yards.

The Raiders recorded five sacks on the day and held Rocky to 4 of 14 on third-down.

Rocky now heads into its bye week alone in third place in the Frontier Conference standings. The Battlin’ Bears next game is October 14 when they face MSU-Northern at 1 p.m. in Havre, Montana.