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NCAA Game Summary - Ball State at Nebraska



(Saturday, September 22nd)

Final Score: (24) Nebraska 41, Ball State 40

Lincoln, NE (Sports Network) - Sam Keller completed 29-of-37 passes for a school-record 438 yards with three touchdowns and an interception, and the 24th-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers survived a 41-40 win over non-conference foe Ball State.

Marlon Lucky rushed for 102 yards on 21 carries with a touchdown for Nebraska (3-1), which beat Nevada and Wake Forest to open the season, but fell to top- ranked USC, 49-31, last week. Sean Hill had three catches for 129 yards and Maurice Purify caught six balls for 122 yards, both of whom scored a touchdown.

Nate Davis completed 26-of-43 passes for 422 yards with three touchdowns and an interception for the Cardinals (2-2), who opened the season with a Mid- American Conference loss to Miami-Ohio, but then rallied for back-to-back wins. MiQuale Lewis rushed for 122 yards on 19 carries with a 43-yard touchdown, and Dante Love caught 10 balls for 214 yards and a score.

Trailing 40-35, Keller led the Cornhuskers 82 yards on nine plays, completing 7-of-7 passes, capped by an 11-yard touchdown pass to Purify for the eventual game-winner. The Huskers went for two points, but Keller's pass to Todd Peterson sailed into the back of the end zone.

Ball State got a first down at the Nebraska 43-yard line on its final drive, but after a five-yard completion to Dan Dunford, Davis threw a strike off the hands of Love with 22 seconds on the clock. After another incomplete pass, Ball State's Jake Hogue was forced to go for the 55-yard field-goal attempt, which missed wide left, as Nebraska escaped with the win.

Nebraska got on the board in the opening minutes on a 28-yard touchdown run by Lucky, who capped a nine-play, 63-yard drive with 10:17 remaining.

With just less than 10 minutes remaining in the second, Davis led Ball State on a 10-play, 80-yard drive that he culminated by completing a 20-yard touchdown pass to Darius Hill. Hogue's 45-yard field goal five minutes later put Ball State ahead 10-7 heading down the first-half stretch.

The Cornhuskers weren't finished, though, as Quentin Castille's one-yard touchdown scamper capped a nine-play, 73-yard drive that put them ahead 14-10 at halftime.

Davis' 14-yard touchdown rush 3 1/2 minutes into the third quarter gave BSU back the lead, 17-14, but Nebraska answered on a Hill 73-yard touchdown reception down the right sideline with 6:39 to go in the third.

BSU took back the lead, 24-21, as Lewis raced down the left sideline before cutting across the middle at the 20-yard line for a 43-yard score with 4:55 left.

Nebraska then marched 71 yards on seven plays finished by Keller's 18-yard touchdown pass to Nate Swift for a 28-24 lead with 2:09 remaining in the third.

Love lifted Ball State back in front, 31-28, heading into the fourth quarter after a 58-yard touchdown reception in the final minute of the third.

BSU drove 96 yards on five plays to open the fourth quarter, and Madaris Grant's 21-yard touchdown reception about two minutes into the final period put it ahead 37-28 after the point after try failed.

The Cornhuskers defense sparked Nebraska's rally down the stretch. Bo Ruud returned an interception 34 yards for a touchdown with 9:21 left, and Nebraska trailed just 37-35.

Hogue's 22-yard field goal two minutes later widened Ball State's lead to 40-35.

Game Notes

Lucky's 11 catches were the most ever by a running back at Nebraska, which compiled 552 yards of total offense, but got outgained by Ball State, which notched 610 yards of offense for the third-highest total ever by an opponent at Memorial Stadium...Keller notched the highest single-game passing total in Nebraska history, passing the previous mark of 433 yards set by Zac Taylor in 2005...The Huskers wrapped up non-conference play, and will now turn their attention to their Big 12 slate...This game marked the first-ever meeting between Ball State and Nebraska on the gridiron.

09/22 17:45:25 ET


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