Homecoming was looking really bleak for Idaho State on Saturday with a little more than a quarter to play against Cal Poly.
Then quarterback Tanner Gueller stepped up, rallying the Bengals from a 31-17 deficit to a 38-34 victory at Holt Arena in Pocatello.
Gueller threw for 341 yards and three touchdowns, and led touchdown drives of 75, 65 and 73 yards in the final 17 minutes of the game. He also ran for 60 yards and a score for Idaho State (3-2, 1-1), which got its first Big Sky Conference win of the season.
“We are just glad to get the win,” Gueller said. “It just makes it fun when you have a good group of guys, guys you believe in.”
After Casey Sublette’s 29-yard field goal put the Mustangs up 34-24 with 11:50 left, Gueller directed a 97-second scoring drive that included 42-yard and 30-yard completions to Michael Dean, the latter being for a touchdown.
On the Bengals’ next drive, Gueller had a 22-yard run and completed a 31-yard pass to Hagen Graves. Three plays later James Madison’s 2-yard touchdown plunge put ISU ahead.
“The kids are super resilient,” ISU coach Rob Phenicie said. “The believed they were going to win, and they weren’t fazed when we were down.”
Madison ran for 78 yards and Mitch Gueller caught three passes for 125 yards. Dean had another big game, hauling in six receptions for 121 yards and scoring twice.
Cal Poly (0-5, 0-2) stayed winless.
Utah State 40, BYU 24
BYU’s miserable season continued Friday night, one week before it will host Boise State. The Cougars (1-4) committed seven turnovers, including two interceptions that were returned for touchdowns by Utah State’s Jalen Davis, who finished with three picks.
After taking a 21-7 lead in the second quarter, the next 13 BYU possessions produced four interceptions, three lost fumbles, two punts, three turnovers on downs and a field goal.