USD football goes 2-0 with 56-0 victory over Peru State

USD football goes 2-0 with 56-0 victory over Peru State USD received 53 yards rushing on six carries from sophomore Stefan Logan of Miami, FL. He left the game in the first half after sustaining an ankle injury, and won't see action against Minnesota State, Moorhead in the DakotaDome Friday. Both Wes Beschorner and Travis Mlady once again shined as the South Dakota football team (2-0) defeated Peru State (0-2) in the Coyotes' home season opener before a raucous and energized crowd of 5,512 at a refreshed DakotaDome on Thursday night.

In two games this season, South Dakota has rolled up 105 points or 52.5 per game. And for the second straight game USD totaled more than 500 yards in total offense with 510 on 57 plays.

USD had 324 yards rushing and 186 passing yards. It was the second straight game that the Coyotes had rolled up more than 300 yards on the ground.

Leading the way was Mlady, a sophomore who had 152 yards on 12 carries with two TDs. Mlady, who had a long of 46 yards, averaged 12.7 yards per carry on Thursday night. In two games this season, Mlady has 310 yards rushing on 27 carries and a 11.5 per rush average along with three TDs.

Junior quarterback Wesley Beschorner, the reigning NCC Player of the Week, again accounted for four TDs, including three passing and one rushing. Beschorner of Lohrville, IA, now has six TD passes and two scoring runs this season.

South Dakota controlled the NAIA Peru State Bobcats from the start. USD led 14-0 after one quarter and built the lead to 35-0 at halftime. USD scored a TD in the third quarter and had two scores in the final quarter of play.

The Coyotes opened the scoring when Beschorner scored on a 14-yard run. With Cody Butler's (Hastings, NE) extra point, USD led 7-0 at the 8:09 mark of the first quarter. Later in the first quarter, Beschorner and sophomore wide receiver Derek Gearman (Lennox) connected on a 43-yard pass play at the 4:51 mark. With Butler's kick, USD led 14-0. USD moved the ball 69 yards in three plays in 1:21.

Sophomore Tyler Evans (Stewart, MN) scored his second rushing TD of the season on a five-yard run with 10:45 to play in the second quarter. Butler's extra point gave USD a 21-0 lead. The lead grew to 28-0 when Mlady scored on a six-yard run at the 4:32 mark of the second quarter. The Coyotes closed out the first-half scoring when Beschorner threw a 26-yard TD pass to Brooks Little (Castlewood). It was Little's first career TD reception. After the score, Butler's extra point kick gave USD a 35-0 lead at halftime.

Beschorner threw his third TD pass of the night when senior Paul Tschetter hauled in a 10-yard scoring reception with 12:14 to play in the third quarter. With Butler's extra point kick, USD led 42-0. Mlady scored on a 13-yard run with 13:16 to play in the fourth quarter. Butler's kick made the score, 49-0. The Coyotes closed out the scoring when Ryan Molencamp recovered a fumble by Evans in the end zone with 8:47 to play in the game. With Butler's kick, USD led, 56-0.

On the night, Beschorner completed 9-of-14 passes for 138 yards with three TDs and one interception. Also for South Dakota, junior quarterback Sean McLaughlin completed 3-of-3 passes for 33 yards and redshirt freshman Carter Black was 1-of-1 passing for 15 yards. Overall, USD completed 13-of-18 passes for 186 yards.

Senior Chris Mikkelsen (Gregory) had four receptions for 35 yards, including a long of 15 yards. With the four catches, he has seven on the season and 111 in his career to move into second place on the career receiving chart at USD. He passed Philip Meehan, who had 108 receptions for USD from 1995-98.

Mikkelsen also had four punt returns for 63 yards, including a long of 39 yards. Gearman's TD reception now gives him four catches on the season and three TDs, with all three scores better than 40 yards.

On the ground, USD received 53 yards rushing on six carries from sophomore Stefan Logan (Miami, FL), who left the game in the first half. Beschorner had six carries for 45 yards and a TD while Evans had 39 yards on six carries. Newcomer Darnell Pitts (Sioux City, IA) had 27 yards on five carries. Tschetter ended with three receptions for 34 yards while David Cronin had two receptions for 36 yards, including a long of 21 yards.

Luke Mikkelsen had two punts for 107 yards or 53.5 per kick.

On defense, the Coyotes limited Peru State to 22 yards rushing on 30 carries and 134 yards in total offense. USD had four quarterback sacks and 10 tackles for loss. Senior Mike Meekins (Superior, NE) led USD with seven tackles. Senior Tim Schellhammer (Chatfield, MN) had five tackles, including four tackles for loss and a quarterback sack.

Peru State was led offensively by quarterback Danny Burns, who completed 13-of-25 passes for 112 yards. Scott Beveridge hauled in five passes for 41 yards and Jared Gerdes had four receptions for 37 yards. T.J. Graham had seven rushes for 16 yards to lead the Bobcats. Stefawn Bradley had five tackles to lead the Peru State defense. Luke Johnson had an interception for the Bobcats.

Next for the Coyotes is the Hall of Fame game with Minnesota State, Moorhead on Sept. 11 at the DakotaDome.

Coyote Tracks

* South Dakota introduced a renovated and improved fan enhanced DakotaDome to the 5,512 in attendance. The remodeled interior included a changed corridor along with a new scoreboard system that includes a video board and a Pro-Ad board, and much more.

* After two games, quarterback Wesley Beschorner had a 206.53 efficiency ranking. He has completed 20-of-31 passes for 336 yards with six TDs and two interceptions. He also had rushed 17 times for 63 yards. Beschorner had completed 64.5 percent of his throws.

* The Coyotes have recorded consecutive 300-yard rushing games to open the season. USD had 635 yards rushing on 82 carries or 7.7 per carry. USD has outrushed oppoents 317.5 per game to 40.5 per game for opponents.

* Placekicker Cody Butler had scored 15 points this season, all extra points. He has yet to attempt a field goal.

* South Dakota has scored 15 TDs in the first two games.

* With six punt returns for 135 yards, Chris Mikkelsen has a gaudy 22.5 punt return average after two games.

* In total offense, USD has rolled up 1,058 yards on 122 plays or 8.7 yards per play. USD is averaging 529 yards per game in total offense.

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