CORVALLIS, Ore. — The Southern Utah Thunderbird football team fell to the Oregon State Beavers on Saturday evening at Reser Stadium, but showed drastic improvement from the first half to the second half outscoring OSU 18-7 in the second half.
“They came out and fought together,” SUU head coach Demario Warren said. “I think the defense did a better job of getting off the field on third downs, which was something we struggled with early. The offense kept fighting. … We became a team. I think that’s something that we needed to do and hopefully we see that if we play together, cheer for each other and have some fun together we’ll have a pretty good team. But we didn’t come here to lose. We lost the game, and there’s no moral victories here and we’ve got another tough one next week, so we really need to understand what it takes to beat a Pac-12 team and I’m hoping they learned that in the second half.”
The Beavers got to work on their opening drive, but the Thunderbirds were able to stop them in the redzone for a field goal. On their next two drives OSU was able to get into the endzone, and took a 17-0 lead into the second quarter.
OSU picked up where they left off in the second period, as they added a touchdown on their first three drives to take a 38-0 lead.
With 4:43 to play in the opening half the Thunderbirds broke through and got on the board as Chris Helbig found Frank Harris III for his first career touchdown.
OSU added a field goal before the break to take a 41-7 lead into the break.
The Thunderbirds found their momentum in the third quarter on both sides of the ball. After a Manny Berz field goal, Helbig capped off a 70-yard drive with a short pickup on the ground to put six more on the board for the T-Birds. The score was 41-16 in favor of the Beavers going into the fourth quarter.
SUU scored another Berz field goal and a Jay Green Jr. touchdown in the closing half, leaving the Beavers with a 48-25 victory.
Helbig threw for 340 yards on 31 completions on Saturday night, with three touchdowns to his credit including one on the ground. Landen Measom caught seven passes against the Beaver secondary for 67 yards. Logan Parker grabbed six for 73. On the ground James Felila finished with 51 yards while Green Jr. added 49 of his own.
Defensively Chinedu Ahanonu led the team in tackles with 10. AJ Stanley had eight tackles, while Taylor Nelson, Jalen Russell and Taelin Webb all had six. Lehi Afatasi had a sack and two tackles for loss.
Story and Photo by: SUU Athletics Strategic Communication