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Breaking Sports: Lights survive scare from Western


Montana State University-Northern wide receiver Brandon O'Brien goes past a UM-Western defender during Saturday's 24-17 Lights' win at Blue Pony Stadium.

The offense got rolling early, but it was two late defensive plays which helped the Montana State University-Northern Lights to a season-opening 24-17 win over the UM-Western Bulldogs Saturday at Blue Pony Stadium.

Leading by seven points with under two minutes to play, the Lights got a game-saving interception from junior linebacker A.J. pasalo. Pasalo picked off a Jeff Logan pass deep in MSU-N territory as the Bulldogs were trying to drive for a game-tying score with under two minutes to go. Earlier in the second half, Northern scored on a Ryan Craig punt block to lead 24-3 with 11:19 left in the game. Western scored twice after that to make the game much closer than the Lights would have liked.

Northern jumped out to a 10-0 lead behind a first-quarter feld goal from Juan Garcia, and a one-yard TD run by Stephen Silva. The Lights went up 17-0 as the second quarter got underway when Derek Lear hit Kyle Johnston for an 80-yard scoring strike. From there however, MSU-N's offense was kept at bay for the rest of the game.

Johnston had 151 yards receiving while Brandon O'Brien hauled in five catches for 71 yards. Lear threw for a career-high 342 yards on 20 completetions. The Lights also went without committing a turnover. Senior defensive end Will Andrews had a sack and a pass breakup.

The Lights are now 1-0 in Frontier Conference play heading into next Saturday's road trip to Montana Tech.

For full coverage, see Tuesday's Havre Daily News.


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