Mid-American Conference News and Notes

9:59 AM, Oct 14, 2013   |    comments
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Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) -

AKRON: Although they had another strong outing, the Zips (1-6, 0-3) lost, 27-20, to the defending conference champion NIU Huskies, their 30th consecutive road loss. Akron trailed by a touchdown for the final six minutes after Kyle Pohl connected with Tyler Goodman in the fourth quarter, but it was stopped on its final two drives by NIU's defense. Pohl went 24-of-56 for 262 yards with a touchdown and an interception, while Jawon Chisholm carried the ball 21 times for 70 yards and two touchdowns. Jerrod Dillard paces the team with 74 receiving yards and the Zips turned the ball over just once. The Huskies held a 399-372 edge in total yards. Akron will look to end its road losing slide in week eight when it visits Miami-Ohio.

BALL STATE: For the third consecutive season under third-year coach Pete Lembo, the Cardinals (6-1, 3-0) became bowl eligible with a hard-fought 27-24 decision over Kent State at Scheumann Stadium. Keith Wenning completed a seven-yard touchdown pass to Willie Snead with 1:29 left in regulation to lift Ball State to its third consecutive decision. Wenning finished 23-of-46 for 305 yards and four touchdowns with two interceptions. He has now surpassed 300 passing yards in seven straight games to open the season Snead pulled down 10 receptions for 152 yards and two touchdowns. Jordan Williams caught seven balls for 83 yards and a score while Jamill Smith caught a touchdown on three catches for 32 yards. Jahwan Edwards was the team's leading rusher, running for 73 yards on 11 carries. Both defenses played great in the opening half as the score was tied at seven at the intermission. Jeffery Garrett made some crucial plays on the defensive side of the ball, including his third interception of the campaign. The Cardinals will continue their quest back to Detroit with a road game at Western Michigan on Saturday.

BOWLING GREEN: Another BCS conference school nearly became a victim of a MAC upset as the Falcons (5-2, 3-0) came up just one point shy of Mississippi State and fell, 21-20, to the Bulldogs in a non-conference battle at Davis Wade Stadium. Both sides put forth a tremendous defensive display in the second half as Matt Johnson's two-yard touchdown run in the third quarter marked the only score over the final 30 minutes of play. BGSU limited the Bulldogs to only 177 yards passing, however it allowed 245 yards on the ground including a 75-yard touchdown run that gave MSU a double-digit lead in the first quarter. Johnson completed 20-of-34 passes for 224 yards while adding 29 yards rushing and a touchdown on six carries at Dave Clawson's unit saw a three-game winning streak come to an end. Travis Greene led the Falcons in rushing with 99 yards on 15 carries. Ryan Burbrink chimed in with 66 yards receiving on four receptions. Paul Swan anchored the defense with 11 total stops. BGSU will have an open week before it returns to its league schedule to host Toledo on Oct. 26.

BUFFALO: For the first time since 1965, Buffalo (4-2, 2-0) blanked an opponent on the road as it coasted to a 33-0 decision over Western Michigan at Waldo Stadium. The Bulls held the Broncos to only 202 yards of total offense including only 38 yards on the ground. Colby Way led the defense that forced four turnovers with three sacks while Khalil Mack registered six tackles, 1.5 for loss, a sack, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Joe Licata went 11- of-21 for 124 yards and three touchdowns to guide the offense while Brandon Oliver led all rushers with 128 yards on 19 carries. Fred Lee also played a big role as he tallied 88 yards and a touchdown on four receptions. UB will be looking for its fifth consecutive win when it hosts Massachusetts on Saturday.

CENTRAL MICHIGAN: Saylor Lavallii powered the Chippewas (3-4, 2-1) to a 26-23 upset of Ohio University in the Bobcats' Peden Stadium. Lavallii racked up a career-best 184 yards on 26 carries and also made a touchdown catch. Cooper Rush had a terrific performance, hitting on 20-of-28 pass attempts for 224 yards and three touchdowns, including the game-winner with under a minute remaining in regulation. CMU trailed, 23-19, with under five minutes remaining before it regained possession in Ohio territory thanks to a muffed punt. Rush found Courtney Williams for a five-yard scoring strike with 22 seconds left to give the Chippewas their second consecutive win after a 1-4 start. CMU actually had fewer total yards (432) than Ohio (439), but the Chippewas had nearly 36 minutes of possession time and converted 9-of-17 third-down attempts. CMU will try to pull off another upset this week when it hosts Northern Illinois.

EASTERN MICHIGAN: 513 of Army's 551 total yards of offense came on the ground as the Black Knights dispatched Eastern Michigan (1-5, 0-2) en route to a 50-25 victory in West Point. The Black Knights' Terry Baggett set the school record with 304 yards on 18 carries and also scored four times on EMU's defense. Bronson Hill led the Eagles with 234 all-purpose yards including 143 rushing. Tyler Benz completed 17-of-26 attempts for 223 yards and two touchdowns. He was also picked off once and sacked twice. Matt Hunter recorded a team-best 13 total stops. EMU failed to register a single tackle for loss, sack or takeaway in the contest. The Eagles held their own for the opening 30 minutes and trailed by only four at halftime before Army posted 21 unanswered points in the third frame to pull away. Now with its non-conference slate in the books, EMU will try to secure its first MAC win when it visits Peden Stadium to take on Ohio in week eight.

KENT STATE: Dri Archer was limited to only 20 total yards by Ball State's defense as the Golden Flashes (2-5, 1-3) let a late lead slip away and fell, 27-24, to the Cardinals at Scheumann Stadium. Brad Miller chipped in a 21-yard field goal just past the midway point of the fourth frame to give Kent State a 24-20 lead before BSU used a late touchdown pass to go ahead with under two minutes left. Freshman quarterback Colin Reardon did a decent job, completing 19-of-24 pass attempts for 166 yards with two touchdowns to one interception. He also added 71 yards on nine rushes while Trayion Durham carried the ball 23 times for 86 yards. Archer averaged just 1.5 yards per carry and 2.8 yards per catch, although he did score a touchdown. Chris Humphrey made nine grabs for 106 yards and a score in the loss. Keenan Stalls stood out on the defensive side of the ball with seven tackles and an interception. The Golden Flashes will step out of MAC play this week to conclude their non-conference slate at South Alabama.

MASSACHUSETTS: The Minutemen (1-5, 1-1) picked up their first victory since Nov. 10, 2012 as they downed Miami-Ohio, 17-10. A.J. Doyle amassed 249 yards, two touchdowns and a pair of interceptions on 19-of-35 passing in the win. Jamal Wilson was steady with 82 yards on 23 carries. Rob Blanchflower caught five passes for a season-high 98 yards and a touchdown. The UMass defense allowed Miami-Ohio to gain only 290 yards. The unit was especially strong on third down, allowing the RedHawks to convert just 1-of-11 attempts. The Minutemen also picked off three passes and forced a turnover-on-downs on Miami's final possession. UMass will seek its first-ever MAC road win on Saturday when it challenges Buffalo in upstate New York.

MIAMI-OHIO: Interim head coach Mike Bath's debut showed promise, but the RedHawks (0-6, 0-2) could not muster anything offensively down the stretch and suffered a 17-10 setback to Massachusetts at Gillette Stadium. Miami held a 10-7 lead with 8:09 remaining in the third quarter before UMass scored 10 straight points to go ahead by a touchdown early in the fourth frame. Bath's offense managed only 290 yards and converted only 1-of-11 third-down plays. Austin Boucher had 166 passing yards and a touchdown, but he was largely ineffective, completing just 14-of-34 pass attempts while tossing three interceptions. Dawan Scott rushed for 55 yards on just five carries, while also tallying four receptions for 58 yards. Miami will try to end its 10-game losing slide this week when it hosts Akron.

NORTHERN ILLINOIS: The Huskies (6-0, 2-0) won their 23rd straight home game as they held off Akron for a 27-20 victory to stay perfect in regular season games under first-year head coach Rod Carey. NIU amassed 399 total yards of offense while allowing Akron to pile up 372 total yards. The win was the 19th in a row over a MAC rival. Jordan Lynch had trouble with his accuracy, hitting on only 16-of-35 pass attempts. The senior quarterback still finished with 303 total yards and two touchdowns. Cameron Stingily added 80 yards and a score on 21 carries, while Tommylee Lewis reeled in six passes for 58 yards. NIU's defense came up with big stops when needed as it stopped the Zips on their final two drives to protect a seven-point lead. The now bowl eligible Huskies will hit the road in week eight to take on Central Michigan.

OHIO UNIVERSITY: Frank Solich's squad had its four-game winning streak snapped as Ohio (4-2, 1-1) was upset, 26-23, at home by Central Michigan. While hanging on to a 23-19 lead, the Bobcats' defense made a stop on a key third down late in the fourth quarter. However, Thad Ingol fumbled the punt on fourth down and CMU recovered the loose ball in Ohio territory to set up its game-winning drive. Tyler Tettleton finished 24-of-33 for 319 yards and two touchdowns, but threw an intercepted on back-to-back drives in the second quarter. Donte Foster made nine catches for 118 yards and Chase Cochran compiled 122 yards and a touchdown on three receptions. Beau Blankenship was limited to only 70 yards on 21 carries. Ohio's defense had been dominant in MAC play entering the bout before it was torched for 432 yards by CMU. The Bobcats committed four turnovers and registered only a single takeaway. They will try to bounce back on the road when they head to Rynearson Stadium to challenge Eastern Michigan on Saturday.

TOLEDO: The Rockets (3-3, 3-1) had an open week following their 47-20 rout of Western Michigan in week six. Toledo returns to action on Saturday to conclude its non-conference slate at home versus Navy.

WESTERN MICHIGAN: The P.J. Fleck era in Kalamazoo continued its poor start as the Broncos (0-7, 0-3) were dismantled in a 33-0 loss to Buffalo at Waldo Stadium. With senior quarterback Tyler Van Tubbergen unavailable due to injury, redshirt freshman Zach Terrell stepped in to make his first career start. Terrell finished 16-of-34 passing for 164 yards, with two interceptions and a pair of fumbles. Dareyon Chance gained 54 yards on nine attempts although the Broncos amassed 202 yards of total offense and converted only 2- of-12 third-down attempts in the contest. Corey Davis led all receivers with eight catches and 92 yards. WMU will try to avoid falling to 0-8 this week as it hosts Ball State.

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