FARGO, N.D. (AP) -Nick Mertens threw for 186 yards and three touchdowns and North Dakota State raced out to a 40-0 lead Saturday and coasted to a 50-14 win over Central Connecticut State.
Mertens completed 15 of 23 passes for the Bison (2-0), much of that in the first half as NDSU went up 43-7. Mertens tossed two touchdown passes Jerimiah Wurzbacher in the second half.
NDSU, which is ranked No. 1 in the latest FCS coaches poll, has outscored its two opponents 91-20. It jumped on the Blue Devils for 27 points in the first quarter, including a blocked punt recovered in the end zone by Daniel Eaves.
Pat Paschall rushed for 117 yards and a TD, Tyler Roehl added 100 yards and Matt Voigtlander had 82 for the Bison, who ran for 330 of their 524 total yards.
D.J. McNorton chipped in 40 yards on 12 carries and scored twice in the first half.
James Mallory carried 17 times for 116 yards for the Blue Devils (1-1).
Central Connecticut got on the board with 2:13 left in the second quarter on an 18-yard TD pass from Hunter Wanket to Josue Paul. The Blue Devils didn't score again until Josh Vargas' 3-yard run with 10:54 remaining.
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