SPRINGFIELD–What’s up Bear Nation. How was your homecoming experience?! Well if it was anything like Missouri State’s football game, then it was a whole lotta fun.

Students, staff, and alumni packed out Plaster Stadium on a gorgeous afternoon to watch Ryan Beard and the Bears take on Murray State.

But on the first play of the game, a Bears reverse goes awry and the ball ends up in the arms of a Racers defender.

That miscue led to this 13-yard touchdown pass from DJ Williams to Taylor Shields. The first of two td connections for the duo in this one.

Three minutes later though, Jordan Pachot and the offense answer. Pachot heaves to the back of the endzone where Jmariyae Robinson hauls it in and drags the foot to tie it up at 7-7.

Later in the quarter, Racers back into Bears territory and this time, Williams throws a dot to Cole Rusk. Big tight end with a sweet grab to regain the lead.

Not so fast though, under 3 minutes to go in the first, Pachot zips a strike to his tight end, Gary Clinton in the back of the endzone. It was 14-all after the opening period.

Then with less than 90 seconds remaining in the first half, Pachot completes the hat trick with this dime to Terique Owens! We hit intermission even steven, 21-21.

Surprisingly, the second half was a defensive struggle, only 10 points combined between the two teams, and Devin Goree’s 2nd sack of the game sealed the victory for the Bears.

Missouri State hangs on to win 28-24 to give the Bears back-to-back w’s for the first time under Ryan Beard.

“Schematically, obviously, there was a shift,” said Bears Head Coach Ryan Beard. “Love the play in the second half. I hate that it got to that point, but again, the guys did what they needed to do. They were focused, they gave great effort, and…it’s a great day to be a Bear.”