PSU falls to 1-1 in conference play

Portland State Viking football suffered another loss, 23-17, with a familiar last minute drive against Idaho State on the road Saturday.

Trailing the Bengals by three late in the fourth quarter, PSU (2-3 overall, 1-1 conference) tore into ISU territory with a monstrous 73 yard run by Ryan Fuqua. Unfortunately for the Vikings, a Terry Charles fumble was recovered by the Bengals and resulted in a 37-yard ISU field goal. The Viks’ last minute drive ended with Idaho State’s Josh Robinson picking off quarterback Juston Wood’s pass on ISU’s 17 yard line.

It was another slow start for both team offenses. The only points of the first half were the two field goals made by Bengal’s kicker Javier Garcia. Neither team crossed into the end zone until ISU’s Jason Girley scored on a 79-yard pass in the third quarter.

PSU’s first points came early in the third quarter with Cajal-Willis’ 38-yard field goal. The Viking’s first visit to the end zone came when Wood connected with Tim Hester for a 35-yard touchdown, bringing the Viks within three.

Two minutes later, the Bengals answered back with a 65-yard touchdown run. PSU closed the point gap to three again when Fuqua went in from 29 yards out.

With the offense struggling in the last couple weeks, the Viking defense is seeing more first half minutes.

“Offensively, everybody needs to do a better job than we did in the first half. The coaches and the players need to find a rhythm to get started early. We weren’t surprised by anything they did, but they did it better than us. Then, turnovers hurt in the second half, and that took away our opportunity to win the game,” head coach Tim Walsh stated in a recent press release.

Marcus Green again led the defense with 12 tackles. Green also had help from Matt Jenkins and Ron Hampton who had 10 tackles apiece.

Portland State returns home to PGE Park Saturday for a Big Sky conference game against Weber State University (1-5 overall, 1-3 conference). The Vikings lost to Weber State 41-9 last season and will look for revenge. Kickoff is at 6:05 p.m.