BiG TWITTER POST: Kent State's Dri Archer runs for 241 yards, 2 TDs, as Falcons lose MAC East title game to Golden Flashes 31-24 at Doyt Saturday
BiG OVERVIEW: After a scoreless first quarter, Kent State took advantage of a BG turnover (a pass by Matt Schilz went off the hands of Chris Gallon and was intercepted by Norman Wolfe) to give the Golden Flashes the ball on the Falcons’ 23. While the defense held, KSU’s Freddy Cortez kicked a 32-yard field goal. On its next possession Kent State’s Dri Archer took a handoff and raced 79 yards for a TD that made the score 10-0. Bowling Green began a comeback on its first play from scrimmage when Schilz hooked up with Gallon on a 72-yard scoring strike. Late in the second quarter BG’s Josh Pettus forced and recovered a fumble on the Flashes’ 41, and the Falcons settled for a 30-yard field goal by Tyler Tate that tied the game at 10-10. Bowling Green took the lead in the third quarter after another KSU turnover (Cameron Truss forced a fumble and Aaron Foster recovered it), and Schilz completed a 27-yard pass to Shaun Joplin for a TD. But Kent State drove 76 yards on six plays with Spencer Keith completing a 32-yard touchdown toss to Eric Adeyemi to retie the game. Archer scored again on the Golden Flashes first drive of the fourth quarter, racing 74 yards for a touchdown on an electrifying run, but the Falcons responded with an 81-yard TD connection from Schilz to Gallon the next play from scrimmage. Then late in the final period a Schilz pass was tipped by Roosevelt Nix and intercepted by Richard Gray on BG’s 20, and Keith scored the winning touchdown on a seven-yard run.
BiG PLAY: There were so many big plays in this contest, it’s almost a disservice to pick one. But if I must … There were a surprising number of turnovers in the contest as both teams coughed the ball up three times (Kent State had two fumbles lost and one interception, while Bowling Green threw three interceptions). The biggest of those turnovers came with the Falcons facing a second-and-10 from their own 20. QB Matt Schilz threw a pass that was tipped by KSU’s Roosevelt Nix and then intercepted by Richard Gray on the 20, and four plays later the Flashes’ Spencer Keith scored the game-winning touchdown on a seven-yard run.
OFFENSIVE BiG MAN: There are some choices for this award, but the leader is freshman wide receiver Chris Gallon. He caught 10 passes for 213 yards and a pair of touchdowns, one of 72 yards and the other covering 81. … Receiving honorable mention is junior quarterback Matt Schilz, who completed 22-of-44 for 355 yards and three touchdowns in his best passing day of the season. Schilz did have three interceptions, although the last was a “hail Mary” attempt. … Junior wide receiver Shaun Joplin had five catches for 74 yards and touchdown, which came on a 27-yard throw from Schilz early in the third quarter. On BG’s final do-or-die drive of the contest he caught three passes for 35 yards and three first downs, two of them coming on third-down plays.
DEFENSIVE BiG MAN: Senior linebacker Dwayne Woods made his final game at the Doyt a memorable one, finishing with 11 tackles, including seven solo stops. Woods was credited with half of a tackle for loss and also had one quarterback “hurry.” … Junior cornerback Cameron Truss posted six tackles, all solo stops, and also forced a fumble. … Sophomore safety Ryland Ward finished with eight tackles, including four solo. … Sophomore linebacker D.J. Lynch posted seven tackles, four of which were solo and one of which was a tackle for loss. … Junior safety Josh Pettus played in place of BooBoo Gates and had six tackles, one of which was a tackle for loss. He also forced and recovered a fumble on the same play. … Junior Aaron Foster came up with a big play for the second week in a row – in fact, this week he had two. He had two tackles, one of which was a 16-yard sack, and he recovered a fumble.
SPECIAL TEAMS BiG MAN: It was an up-and-down day for BG’s special teams, but junior punter Brian Schmiedebusch was generally solid. Schmiedebusch punted the ball five times for 195 yards, an average of 39 yards per kick. He dropped two inside KSU’s 20 and had a 50-yard punt on the day. BG’s net yards per punt was 39.8 yards because of a negative return by the Flashes. … Honorable mention to senior Stephen Stein, who handled the kickoffs in the absence of Anthony Farinella and also made three extra points.
BiG NUMBERS: One positive and one negative for the Falcons … starting with the positive. Bowling Green’s 355 yards passing was the most by the team this season, surpassing the 332 passing yards against Rhode Island. It’s the eighth-highest passing total since Dave Clawson took over as coach, and it’s interesting to note that the highest (505 yards) and third-highest (400) both came against the same school: Kent State. … And now the negative: KSU’s 334 yards rushing were the most allowed by the Falcons this season, easily surpassing the 246 rushing yards by Virginia Tech. That was the highest rushing total against BG since Western Michigan ran for 351 yards last season (and West Virginia had 360 yards the week before).
BiG QUESTION: Can the Falcons bounce back? Obviously BG’s hopes of winning the Mid-American Conference’s East Division title have been dashed, but there still are things to play for. Another win would give Bowling Green eight, the most since the 2007 team that played in the GMAC Bowl. A victory also would solidify the Falcons’ spot as a bowl-eligible team since there are five other MAC schools with eight wins.
Click here to read The Blade story from Saturday’s contest. Click here to read The Blade notebook from Saturday’s contest. Click here to read the in-game chat from Saturday’s game. Click here to read some post-game notes and quotes from the game. Click here to view a photo gallery from Saturday’s contest, courtesy of The Blade's Lori King. And click here to read a column from the contest written by The Blade's Dave Hackenberg.