MISSOULA, Mont. - Turnovers came back to haunt the Vandals on Saturday, as Idaho (4-6, 2-4 BSC) fell at No. 6/No. 5 Montana (8-2, 6-1 BSC), 42-17.
The Vandals jumped out to a 10-0 lead after a 97-yard drive was capped off by a Connor Whitney touchdown from Mason Petrino.
Idaho's defense was stellar in the first quarter. Christian Nash snagged his first career interception on Montana's second play from scrimmage. Montana's second drive made it all the way to the Idaho 4-yard line before Tyrese Dedmon forced a Griz fumble that was recovered by Sedrick Thomas. Dedmon got his hands on another turnover on the second play of the next drive, his first career interception.
Following the Whitney touchdown Montana made a switch at quarterback and brought in the expected starter, Dalton Sneed. Sneed brought the Griz down the field for their first touchdown on his first drive, cutting into the Idaho lead. The Griz would add another late in the half to take a 14-10 lead into the break.
The turnovers came in the third. The first came on a fumble midway through the quarter and led to another Montana touchdown. The next came on the ensuing drive, with Petrino getting picked off after a deflection at the line of scrimmage. Again, the Griz capitalized with a touchdown, going up 28-10.
The Vandals stayed locked in and drove 75 yards for a touchdown on the following drive, stretching into the fourth quarter, to cut the deficit to just 11 at 28-17.
Montana would score touchdowns on each of its next two drives, sandwiched around another Petrino fumble, and would go on to win, 42-17.
Cutrell Haywood led the Vandals with seven receptions and finished with 79 yards and a touchdown. Jeff Cotton caught six passes for 98 yards, despite missing the entire second half.
The Vandals return home to face No. 8 Sacramento State at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 16. Tickets are on sale now at GoVandals.com/Tickets.