SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Seven Sacramento State players scored a touchdown as the Hornets steamrolled Cal Poly, 49-14, on Saturday at Spanos Stadium.
With the win, Sacramento State improved to 6-4 overall and 5-2 in Big Sky Conference games. The win assured the team of a winning overall record and matched the highest Big Sky win total in program history. It was also the first victory in San Luis Obispo since a 31-26 win in 1999. Cal Poly dropped to 1-9 overall and 1-6 in league games.
Kevin Thomson returned to action after missing the past three games with injury. The quarterback completed 9-of-16 passes for 247 yards and three touchdowns. He led an offense which averaged 9.9 yards per play and accumulated 465 yards on just 47 plays.
The Hornet defense limited the Mustangs' triple-option attack to 141 rushing yards and held Cal Poly to 289 total yards (3.4 yards per play). Sacramento State was also able to record four sacks against a team that does not throw the ball often and finished the game with 14 tackles-for-loss.
Individually, BJ Perkinson led the Hornet run game with seven carries for 164 yards and a score. The game marked the second time this season that Perkinson went over the century mark. Andre Lindsey was also efficient catching four passes for 111 yards.
Sacramento State had a near-perfect first half, scoring on offense, defense and special teams. The team struck first with a 76-yard to pass from Kevin Thomson to Jaelin Ratliff just three offensive plays into the game. Ernest Jenkins returned a blocked punt 74 yards for a score to give the Hornets a 14-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Elijah Wallace, who was making his season debut, led the team with nine tackles. Immanuel Anderson aded seventh stops with three TFLs and Miguel Garcia had six tackles with two tackles-for-loss.
The team stretched its lead in the second quarter with a pair of touchdowns. Marcus Bruce recovered a fumble in his fourth consecutive game when he fell on a loose ball in the end zone. The score was set up when freshman Killian Rosko hit Jake Jeffrey preventing a good option toss. Bruce then dove on the loose ball in the end zone for his second score of the season. Thomson capped the first half scoring with a 29-yard strike to Andre Lindsey.
The shutout in the first half extended Sacramento State's streak to four consecutive quarters without allowing a point. The last time the team blanked an opponent in the opening half came against Eastern Oregon in 2015.
The Hornets continued the onslaught in the third quarter with three touchdowns. Elijah Dotson had a 33-yard rush around the left edge for the first score. Isiah Hennie made it 42-0 with a grab on fourth-and-goal and Perksinon concluded the team's scoring with a 77-yard sprint around the left edge.
Cal Poly broke through in the fourth quarter with a pair of touchdowns working against Sacramento State's young players.
Jake Jeffrey was 13-of-20 for 148 yards with an interception for the Mustangs. Jared Mohamed led the team with 125 rushing yards and J.J. Koski had six catches for 67 receiving yards.
Sacramento State will close its regular season on Saturday, Nov. 18, against UC Davis at 2 p.m. at Hornet Stadium.
14:03 - Sacramento State took the opening kickoff and needed just three plays to find the end zone. Facing third down, Kevin Thomson floated a ball down the left sideline where Jaelin Ratliff was able to run under it and went untouched into the end zone for a 76-yard score. On the play, Ratliff was able to blow past his defender and then outraced the safety for the longest reception of his career.
1:56 - After the defense help Cal Poly, the special teams found their way to the scoreboard. Marcus Kirkpatrick broke through to block a punt and Ernest Jenkins picked up the ball along the right sideline. The senior then outran three would-be tacklers for his first career touchdown.
13:12 - Sacramento State completed the scoring trifecta when the defense scored a touchdown. Freshman Killian Rosko stripped Jake Jeffrey before the quarterback could make an option toss. The ball squirted through the hands of a Mustang and bounced into the end zone where Marcus Bruce was able to recover it for his second touchdown of the year.
5:50 - The Hornets made the score 28-0, when Thomson found Lindsey for two big throws. Lindsey kept the drive alive with a 42-yard catch on 3rd-and-9 and then scored two plays later when Thomson delivered a strike in the back right corner of the end zone on 3rd-and-4.
10:13 - Elijah Dotson almost single-handedly scored the first points of the half for the Hornets. The freshman caught a 44-yard pass where he side-stepped a handful of defenders and the took a handoff on the next play and darted 33 yards untouched into the end zone.
2:44 - Sacramento State converted on fourth-and-goal when Thomson hit Isiah Hennie on slant to make it 42-0. The drive was sparked by a 54-yard rush from Perkinson where the freshman was able to roll over a tackler get back on his feet and race inside the 10-yard line.
1:18 - Perkinson became the seventh Hornet to score a touchdown when he took the first play of the drive and travelled 77 yards for a score. Perkinson became the third Hornet to have a scoring play of at least 70 yards in the game.
11:16 - Cal Poly scored its first points on a 1-yard rush around the right edge by Broc Mortensen. The Mustangs converted on third and fourth down tries during the drive. The score marked the first points allowed by Sacramento State in over five quarters.
5:02 - With the game in control by the Hornets, Cal Poly added a late touchdown against the Sacramento State reserves. The Mustangs picked up eight yards on 4th-and-3 midway through the series and scored on a 1-yard rush from Reagan Enger.