Actions

Montana Western football advances to NAIA playoffs as No. 16 seed

Montana Western Bulldogs logo
Posted at 12:22 PM, Nov 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-15 14:22:59-05

DILLON  — The Bulldogs are playoff bound.

For the first time since 2002, Montana Western's football team (8-3 overall, 7-3 in the Frontier Conference) advanced to the NAIA playoffs, with the bracket being unveiled Sunday evening.

The Bulldogs, which beat Rocky Mountain College in double overtime on Saturday to give Western a share of the Frontier title, will enter the 16-team postseason tournament as the No. 16 team. Western will hit the road and play at No. 1 seed Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) on Saturday.

Western is the only team in the field to advance to the postseason with three losses in the regular season. The Bulldogs eight regular-season wins are the most since 2002, their last playoff season.

After suffering a double-overtime loss at College of Idaho on Oct. 23, the Bulldogs reeled off three-straight wins to close out the Frontier season, completing sweeps against MSU-Northern, Montana Tech and the Battlin' Bears.

Saturday's game will be a tough test for the Bulldogs, but they'll have plenty of weapons at their disposal as they look to pull off a first-round upset.

After setting a school record with 13 touchdown receptions in 2019, Nate Simkins broke his own record by recording 14 this season to go along with 1106 receiving yards. He hauled in 80 catches and averaged over 13 yards per catch.

Western also has a potent running back duo in Nevada transfer Reese Neville and Colten McPhee. The tandem combined for 19 rushing touchdowns this season and nearly 1500 yards on the ground.

Quarterback Jon Jund also contributed in the run game, rushing for 920 yards and 10 touchdowns while averaging over five yards a run. He also threw 31 touchdowns against 14 interceptions and piled up 2925 passing yards.

Click here to see the first-round games.