Calan Crowder’s two-yard touchdown run with 1:53 left in regulation and a strong defensive effort helped deliver a 28-21 Missouri State victory over Murray State Saturday afternoon at Robert W. Plaster Stadium.

Crowder, who rushed for 104 yards on 15 carries in the Bears’ first win of 2017, capped the decisive 44-yard scoring drive with a short plunge into the end zone after Deion Holliman’s 29-yard punt return put the Bears in business inside Murray State territory with 5:16 to play. Holliman, who also registered a 40-yard punt return earlier in the fourth quarter, finished the day with 149 all-purpose yards, including five punt returns for a total of 80 yards to help set up the Bears’ late surge.

Up next, the Bears will welcome nationally-ranked Illinois State to Plaster Stadium for a 2 p.m. game next Saturday (Sept. 23).

Postgame Notes: With his second-quarter TD reception, Malik Earl (1,401 yards) moved past Cadarrius Dotson (1,327) into 13th on the Bears’ career receiving yardage chart; Earl needs three more yards to match Sean Adams’ career total in the No. 12 spot on the list…Deion Holliman topped the 3,000-yard mark for all-purpose yardage with 149 yards to move up to eighth on the Bears’ career list, passing both Jermaine Saffold (2,891) and Jason Ringena (2,894)…McNeece Egbim logged a career-high 15 tackles—a Bears’ single-game high for 2017…Austin Henderson (7 tackles), Jordan Wilkes (7), Zack Sanders (6), Skyler Hulse (5) and Tyler Lovelace (4) each recorded career single-game highs for tackles as well…Calan Crowder topped the 100-yard rushing mark for the second time in three games this season and for the sixth time during his MSU career…Peyton Huslig accounted for three of MSU’s four touchdowns (2 passing, 1 rushing) for the second time in three games as a Bear…Missouri State’s announced attendance of 13,648 marked the Bears’ best home crowd since Oct. 17, 2015 vs. Illinois State (14,212); it also represents MSU’s fifth-best home crowd since the renovation of Plaster Stadium prior to the 2014 season…MSU improved to 67-35-4 all-time in home openers with their fourth-straight victory in their initial home contest…The Bears also ran their all-time record at Plaster Stadium to 211-165-12.

Story–Missouri State Athletics