Vermillion, S.D. - The Youngstown State football team suffered a 56-21 loss to South Dakota on Saturday afternoon at the DakotaDome.
With the defeat, YSU drops to 5-5 overall and 1-5 in the MVFC while South Dakota improves to 4-6 and 3-3.
For the game, sophomore quarterback Joe Craycraft completed 18-of-30 passes for 246 yards and three touchdowns. Nine different YSU players had receptions in the contest.
USD jumped out to a 14-0 lead on the strength of two Austin Simmons touchdown passes. On the Coyotes' first drive of the game, Simmons found Herrmann Connor for a 13-yard scoring strike. On its next possession, Simmons hit Carter Bell on a 15-yard touchdown toss.
YSU pulled within 14-7 on its next possession moving 91 yards in just five plays. After a penalty and four rushes moved the ball out to the 47-yard line, Craycraft found Jermiah Braswell on a 53-yard touchdown pass.
But the Yotes answered right back as Simmons called his own number scoring on a 10-yard run to push the lead back up to two touchdowns.
On the first play of the second quarter Simmons threw his third touchdown pass of the game. This time he connected with Brett Samson on a six-yard toss.
However, YSU used an impressive seven-play, 69-yard drive to march right back down the field and get within two touchdowns. For the second time in the contest, Craycraft found Braswell on a scoring toss, this time on a nine-yard slant with 10:34 left in the second quarter.
The Penguins stopped the Coyotes on back-to-back possessions, but a fumble by the YSU special teams units gave USD the ball at the Penguins' two-yard line. On the first play following the turnover, Kai Henry punched it in for a score and a 35-14 USD lead.
In the second half, USD outscored YSU, 21-7. The Penguins scored late in the fourth quarter when Craycraft connected with Braxton Chapman on a one-yard touchdown pass.
For South Dakota, Simmons was 13-of-21 for 180 yards and four touchdowns.
The Penguins return to action next Saturday when they visit Indiana State. Kickoff at Memorial Stadium in Terre Haute, Ind., is set for 1 p.m.