Cookeville, TN – Maybe eight isn't enough for Central Arkansas.
The Bears won their eighth straight game on Saturday as redshirt senior quarterback Nathan Dick threw for 319 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for another score in a 34-14 win at Tennessee Tech in the first round of the FCS playoffs.
Up next for Central Arkansas (9-3) is a second-round match-up at No. 4 seed Montana (9-2) on Dec. 3 in Missoula (2 p.m. ET kickoff). The Bears basically have been in playoff-mode ever since they opened their season with a 1-3 record.
Dick completed 23-of-29 attempts. The Bears, who never trailed, broke the game open when Dick fired a 42-yard touchdown to Jesse Grandy to give the visitors a 27-7 lead with 4:50 left in the third quarter.
Central Arkansas, ranked 15th in The Sports Network/Fathead.com FCS Top 25, built a 10-0 lead. After Terence Bobo scored on a 1-yard touchdown run with 2:16 left in the first quarter, Willie Matthews recovered a fumble by Tennessee Tech's Cody Forbes on the ensuing kickoff. The Bears' Eddie Camara then kicked a 25-yard field goal on the first play of the second quarter.
Dick's 1-yard touchdown run gave Central Arkansas a 17-7 lead with 1:55 left in the second quarter. He also threw a 30-yard touchdown pass to Thomas Hart in the fourth quarter.
Jackie Hinton ran for 87 yards on 19 carries in the win.
Quarterback Tre Lamb completed 30-of-44 passes for 291 yards, two touchdowns and one interception for 21st-ranked Tennessee Tech (7-4), a tri-champion in the Ohio Valley Conference, but winner of its automatic bid to the playoffs.
Austin Tallant had a game-high 16 tackles in the loss.
Coupled with Eastern Kentucky's 20-17 loss to James Madison earlier on Saturday, OVC teams have lost 18 straight playoff games since 2000.