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Record setting day as Bobcats cut down Lumberjacks

By Kane O'Neill, KTVM Sports, koneill@ktvm.com
Published On: Dec 24 2013 08:04:44 AM MST
Updated On: Oct 06 2013 09:55:08 PM MDT
BOZEMAN, Mont. -

The big question heading into the Bobcat's homecoming game Saturday was how would they stop Northern Arizona's star running back Zach Bauman. Bauman rushed for 125 yards and 2 touchdowns against the University of Montana last weekend but the Bobcats made sure he wouldn't have a repeat performance.

MSU's defense held Bauman to 28 yards in the game. On the flip side Bobcat senior running back Cody Kirk ran for 156.

"Pick your poison," said Kirk. "If you want us to beat you in the pass it'll be in the pass. If you want us to beat you on the ground we'll beat you on the ground. That was our mentality just go out there and get after them."

Kirk wasn't the only star in the running game as Shawn Johnson also ran for 98 yards today. However his biggest play of the game wasn't a normal run. It was a 100 yard kickoff return.

"He hit it with great speed and we got everybody covered and blocked," said MSU head coach Rob Ash. "Jon Ellis and him were having a foot race down the sideline. That was pretty exciting. It was a great play."

One play that didn't get much recognition until after the game was a catch made by senior wide receiver Tanner Bleskin, which set the MSU career receptions record with 170. The quarterback that threw the pass that set the record was his brother Jake.

"Tanner Bleskin would rather have a win than a career record or single game record or any kind of record," said Ash. "That is pretty cool though that that pass came from his brother. They're very close."

That wasn't the only record set today as homecoming brought thousands of fans to Bozeman this weekend and it showed as MSU set a new attendance record with 21,027 fans. The Bobcats say that helped them get the victory on Saturday.

"Our crowd was awesome from the very beginning of this game," Ash said. "That helps us get out of drives. Our guys raise their level of play and that's one of the advantages of playing in front of 21,000 people."