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Rapid Reaction: No. 4 Montana 39, Cal Poly 7

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Posted at 4:28 PM, Sep 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-25 23:08:18-04

MISSOULA — The Montana defense continues to dominate, as the Grizzlies jumped all over Cal Poly early on Saturday afternoon in Missoula on their way to a 39-7 win over the Mustangs.

FULL HIGHLIGHTS: Defense, special teams lead No. 4 Montana to win over Cal Poly

After the two sides traded punts back and forth early on, Cam Humphrey hit Sammy Akem on a slant that he took 65 yards to the house to break the seal for Montana. On Cal Poly's ensuing possession, defensive end Justin Belknap came up with an interception that he returned back for a touchdown to put the Griz up 15-0.

Leading 18-0 at halftime after a Kevin Macias field goal, Malik Flowers took the opening kick of the third quarter back to extend Montana's lead to 25-0. Montana then scored two touchdowns in the span of less than a minute when Humphrey hit Joey Elwell for a 23-yard score, then the Griz defense blocked a Cal Poly punt and Levi Janacaro hopped on it in the endzone to give the Griz a 39-0 advantage.

Cal Poly's only points came in the fourth quarter on a 2-yard touchdown run by Shakobe Harper.

TURNING POINT: Belknap's interception return. The Cal Poly offense was sputtering early before Belknap's pick-6, but that turnover gave the Griz a 15-0 lead over the Mustangs. The Montana defense continued to swarm from there.

STAT OF THE GAME: Turnovers. This continues to be a trend for the Montana defense. The Griz forced two more turnovers this afternoon while not coughing it up.

GAME BALLS: Montana's defense and special teams. The Grizzlies had a touchdown on the defensive side of the ball on Belknap's pick-6 and two touchdowns on special teams between Flowers' kickoff return and Janacaro's blocked punt recovery.

WHAT'S NEXT: Montana (3-0) will visit Eastern Washington on Saturday, Oct. 2.