- Associated Press - Saturday, November 7, 2015

VERMILLION, S.D. (AP) - Drew Iddings forced a fumble that led to the go-ahead touchdown and blocked the game-tying field goal attempt in the closing seconds as South Dakota beat Southern Illinois 34-31 on Saturday.

With the win, the Coyotes (5-4, 3-3 Missouri Valley Conference) handed head coach Joe Glenn his 200th career win.

“That’s wonderful, but honestly it pales to this game,” Glenn said. “This game goes to the Coyotes and only the Coyotes, not to a coach that’s coached perhaps a thousand games.”

Iddings’ sack of Southern Illinois quarterback Mark Iannotti with 5:29 left led to a fumble on the SIU 19-yard line. Ryan Saeger’s 5-yard TD pass to Brandon Andrews on fourth down with 3:09 left gave the Coyotes the lead.

After the Salukis (3-6, 2-4) drove into field goal range, Iddings blocked Austin Johnson’s 51-yard field goal attempt with 46 seconds left.

The Coyotes scored 17 points off Salukis turnovers.

“They were fabulous. What can you say,” Glenn said. “They all took turns making big plays. Man, the defense had to hang in there.”

South Dakota quarterback Ryan Saeger was 26-for-39 for 269 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran for 64 yards and another touchdown.

Iannotti ran for two touchdowns and threw for 251 yards and two scores. But he also lost two fumbles under pressure from the USD defense and threw two interceptions.

“He’s second today to Ryan Saeger,” Glenn said of the two quarterbacks. “The winning pitcher today was Ryan Saeger . I don’t want to hear Iannotti.”

Iannotti led the Salukis on a 16-play, 80-yard drive for a 7-0 lead with 8:48 left in the first quarter. Iannotti capped the drive with a 1-yard run.

But back-to-back Iannotti turnovers in the first quarter helped South Dakota take the lead.

First, an Iannotti fumble led to the Coyotes’ game-tying touchdown. The Coyotes moved 44 yards in 11 plays and scored on quarterback Ryan Saeger’s 1-yard run.

On Southern Illinois’ next possession, Tyson Graham intercepted a pass that led to a 30-yard Mile Bergner field goal and a 10-7 lead.

Iannotti responded quickly, throwing a 2-yard TD pass to Isra Lamprakes.

But with 3:34 left in the half, Saeger hit Brandt Van Roekel down the right side for an 80-yard TD pass.

Saeger’s 11-yard TD pass to Drew Potter staked South Dakota to a 27-21 lead early in the third quarter. The lead lasted just 45 seconds before Iannotti threw a 79-yard TD pass to Billy Reed and the Salukis were back on top 28-27.

Salukis’ kicker Austin Johnson kicked a 50-yard field goal with 10:21 to play to extend their lead to 31-27.

Reed caught five passes for 142 yards with a touchdown.

Southern Illinois has lost six games by a total of 17 points.

“It was a fabulous game. One of the best games I’ve ever seen,” Glenn said. “In the end, our defense really turned it up and took the ball away from them.”

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