EOU’s Sean Hurlbut carries the ball in the first half of the Mountaineers’ 63-35 loss to Southern Oregon Saturday. CASEY KELLAS - The Observer
The Southern Oregon University football team came to Community Stadium Saturday and did what it does best: score.
The Raiders put up 60 points for the second time this season against Eastern Oregon University, running away with a 63-35 victory.
SOU put up 642 yards of total offense, including 557 yards through the air.
The loss spoiled what was a good day offensively for the Mountaineers.
EOU had its best rushing day of the season, finishing with 235 yards on the ground.
Quarterback Jason Simonis led the ground attack with 138 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries.
He also completed 19 of 31 passes for 196 yards and three scores.
But the Southern offense proved to be too prolific.
The Raiders got on the board less than two minutes into the game on an eight-yard touchdown pass from Austin Dodge to Cole McKenzie.
Southern Oregon added two more scores before the first quarter was over — a seven-yard touchdown pass from back-up quarterback Chris Kammel to Clay Sierra and a one-yard touchdown run by Mike Olson — to extend its lead to 21-0.
That’s when things started to turn in EOU’s favor.
A fumble in the Raiders’ end zone by Dodge was recovered by Ronnie Flowers to get the Mountaineers on the board at the end of the first.
Then in the second quarter Simonis scampered in from 18 yards out to cut the lead to 21-14.
On the ensuing EOU possession, Simonis led his team downfield and found Jace Billingsley for a six-yard touchdown pass to tie the game at 21-21 with 6:39 to go in the first quarter.
But right when things were looking good, the Raiders got their second wind.
After a roughing the kicker penalty by EOU extended an SOU drive, the Raiders scored on a 12-yard touchdown pass to Olson.
The Raiders scored again on a touchdown pass to McKenzie with 52 seconds left in the second quarter and SOU took a 35-21 lead into halftime.
In the second half it was all Southern Oregon, as the Raiders stretched their lead to 42-21.
EOU got back within 14 points at 42-28, but that was as close as it would get as Southern Oregon scored three more times before a late EOU touchdown.
Dodge completed 32 of 55 passes for 550 yards and four touchdowns.
Patrick Donahue caught eight passes for 143 yards and a touchdown, while Olson had five for 159 and a score.
McKenzie had seven grabs for 119 and one TD. Manny Barragan had 98 yards receiving and 63 yards rushing.
With the victory Southern Oregon improves to 7-2 overall this season, while EOU is 4-5.
Montana Tech is still leading the Frontier Conference with an 8-1 mark.
The Mountaineers will travel to Dillon, Mont., to take on University of Montana Western next Saturday
Kickoff is scheduled for 12 p.m. MT.
Montana Western is 3-6 this season and lost to Montana Tech 43-7 Saturday.
The Bulldogs defeated Eastern Oregon 16-3 back on Sept. 29.