Cody Stroud threw three touchdowns as McNeese State defeated Sam Houston State 31-23 in the two teams’ second Southland Conference game of the 2013 season.
The Kats struggled on both offense and defense after taking a 3-0 lead in the first quarter with Luc Swimberghe’s 38-yard field goal. SHSU (5-2, 1-1) traded field goals for touchdowns with McNeese (5-1, 2-0) in the first half and the Cowboys led 14-6 at intermission.
Stroud threw 17-yard touchdown pass to Damon Gladney in the first quarter, then found Ernest Celestie in the end zone while covered by two SHSU defenders for a 29-yard touchdown toss.
Swimberghe converted on a 21-yard field goal to open the second half scoring, but the Cowboys responded with a five-play, 79-yard drive that ended with four-yard touchdown run by Marcus Wiltz.
The Kats scored touchdowns in the fourth quarter with a three-yard pass from Brian Bell to tight end Deon Hutchinson and an 18-yard toss to Stephen Williams.