2:00 PM ET, November 1, 2003
Bobcat Stadium (MT), Bozeman, MT
BOZEMAN, Mont. (AP) -- Sacramento State couldn't stop Montana State running back Bruce Molock and couldn't catch return man Corey Smith.
Molock rushed for 201 yards and three touchdowns and Smith returned two punts for scores Saturday as Montana State downed Sacramento State 56-7.
"The punt returns came as a result of the defense getting us the ball," said MSU coach Mike Kramer. "It's unbelievable to watch how the defense has grown here in four years. And it was a great effort by the offense to cure our ills."
Montana State (5-4 overall, 3-1 Big Sky) held the Hornets (2-7, 1-4) to 239 yards of total offense and allowed Blake Mori only 10 completions in 30 pass attempts.
The Bobcats' third straight win keeps them in the hunt for the league title, while Sacramento State lost its fifth straight game.
Bobcat quarterback Travis Lulay completed 19-of-27 passes for 191 yards and a touchdown. He ran for another score.
Molock, who also caught four passes for 34 yards, scored twice on runs of 1 yard and broke loose down the middle for 60 yards with 1:31 left in the third quarter to put the Bobcats up 42-7.
Molock opened the scoring with a 1-yard run with 9:37 left in the first quarter. The touchdown capped a six-play drive kept alive by a tipped pass that Demetrius Williams caught for a 34-yard gain.
"It's about time something like that went our way," Lulay said. "It gave us a little spark."
MSU took a 14-0 lead after Lulay's 1-yard TD run.
Smith returned a punt by Todd Marshall 80 yards for a touchdown to give the Bobcats a 21-0 lead with 12:07 left in the second quarter. Marshall was sent flying with a block by fullback Ryan Elliott on the play and did not return to the game.
"I was in the right place at the right time," Elliott said. "I'll take a good block over a touchdown any day."
Molock's second rushing TD put Montana State up 28-0 with 7:43 left in the half.
The Hornets only score came when Mori hit Josh Farrell with a screen pass and the running back eluded two MSU defenders to score on a 47-yard pass play.
Smith returned another Sac State punt 48 yards for a touchdown with 4:39 remaining in the third period to give MSU a 35-7 lead.
"All week we practiced on putting it in the corner and not letting (Smith) catch it," said Sac State coach Steve Mooshaigian. "But we had a lot of inexperienced guys playing on special teams too, and they didn't execute. Believe me, it was not designed so that Smith could get the ball."
Smith also caught four passes for 38 yards.
Lulay hit Elliott with a 3-yard scoring strike to give the Bobcats a 49-7 lead with 11:41 remaining.
David Mayfield, who replaced Molock in the fourth period, completed the scoring with an 8-yard touchdown run with 3:13 remaining.