Western Illinois rallies to 31-14 win over Illinois State

NORMAL, Ill. -- Sean McGuire threw for two touchdowns as Western Illinois roared back from a 14-0 halftime deficit to beat Illinois State 31-14 on Saturday.

The Leathernecks (6-3, 3-3 Missouri Valley Conference) scored 31 unanswered points in the second half on a pair of McGuire TD passes, TD runs by Clint Ratkovich and Steve McShane and a field goal by Sam Crosa.

McGuire finished with 288 yards passing and McShane had 67 yards rushing.

McGuire capped the first drive of the second half with a 35-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Gaston and the Leathernecks trailed 14-7. Ratkovich ran for a score on the team's next drive and Crosa kicked a 28-yard field goal to give Western Illinois a 17-14 edge as the third quarter closed.

Early in the fourth, McGuire capitalized on a failed fourth-and-7 try by the Redbirds (6-3, 4-2) deep in their own territory with a 27-yard touchdown pass to Ratkovich and the Leathernecks led 24-14.

Jake Kolbe had 223 yards and two touchdowns passing for Illinois State.


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