TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Indiana State junior tailback Shakir Bell rushed for a school and Missouri Valley Football Conference single-game record 349 yards and scored two touchdowns as the Sycamores won their second straight home game, topping the visiting Drake Bulldogs 27-10 Saturday in Memorial Stadium.
The Sycamores improved to 2-1 as they head into next week's conference opener against South Dakota State while the Bulldogs fell to 1-2.
Bell scored twice in the third quarter to break open a game that was tied at 10 during the halftime intermission. The first score came on Indiana State's first possession of the second half as Bell broke free down the north sideline and ran 60 yards for the score with 12:54 left. He backed that up with a 48-yard scoring run on the Sycamores second possession of the period to put Indiana State up 24-10 with 10:47 left in the third quarter.
The Sycamore junior broke his own school record of 256 rushing yards in a single game that he established almost a year ago against Youngstown State (Sept. 24, 2011). His 337-yard total also broke the Missouri Valley Football Conference record of Western Illinois' Herb Donaldson who ran for 328 against Indiana State in 2006. The 349-yard single game performance also ranks eighth all-time among FCS schools and is the most yards gained by a running back in a single game this season among Division I schools. Additionally, his 349 yards is the most gained either rushing or receiving by a Sycamore in a game since Bill Griffith gained 319 yards receiving in 1955 against Evansville.
Indiana State fell behind 3-0 in the opening period as Drake's Spencer Lee connected on a 22-yard field goal with 9:12 left in the first quarter. The Sycamores came back on a four play, 61 yard drive in the second quarter that was capped with a 22 yard scoring strike from Mike Perish to Demory Lawshe. Tanner Fritschie booted the point after for a 7-3 Sycamore lead with 7:18 remaining in the half.
Drake countered with a seven yard touchdown pass from Mike Piatkowski to Nick Rosa that capped a seven play, 71 yard drive and put the Bulldogs back in front 10-7 with 3:38 left in the opening half. For the third straight game this season, the Sycamores ended the first half with a field goal as Fritschle was good from 21 yards out to knot the score at 10.
The second half was highlighted by Bell's running and the Sycamore defense keeping the Bulldogs out of the end zone. Indiana State did add a 35 yard field goal with 3:42 left in the game to put the Sycamores up 27-10.
The Sycamore defense has allowed just one offensive touchdown by the opposition in its last nine quarters of action, dating back to the fourth quarter of the season opener at Indiana.
Bell finished the game with 349 yards on 33 carries with two touchdowns. Perish was 7-of-13 passing for 94 yards and one touchdown while Lawshe led the receiving corps with 48 yards on three receptions and a touchdown.
The Sycamore defense was led by Aaron Archie with 14 tackles (six solos) while Jacolby Washington had 14 tackles (four solos).
Indiana State (2-1) opens Missouri Valley Football Conference action next Saturday as they host South Dakota State with a 2:05 p.m. (ET) kickoff. Drake fell to 1-2 with the loss and hosts Morehead State in their Great Lakes Valley Football Conference opener.
Release from Indiana State University Atheltics
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