Ohio vs Akron: Bobcats back in MAC East race with win over Zips

The Akron/Kent State writer took care of the recap for MAC Report Online this Saturday, but since I’m a loser with nothing better to do on a Saturday night I wrote a recap anyway.

A game against the lowly Akron Zips was just what the doctor ordered for the Ohio Bobcats, as they snapped their two-game losing streak with a 37-20 victory at InfoCision Stadium Saturday.

The “big-play offense” of the Bobcats was clicking as Ohio outgained Akron 556 yards to 249.

While the offense was able to move the ball at will, three turnovers and 100 penalty yards dampened what was otherwise a good performance.

“I think we showed some signs of coming out of (our slump),” Head Coach Frank Solich said. “Three turnovers again today. That’s not what we’re after, but we were able to overcome that.”

The first turnover, a Tyler Tettleton interception on the team’s first drive, stalled the early momentum. Despite the mistake, Tettleton continued his efficient ways completing 21 of 29 passes for 328 yards.

Another long drive in the first quarter resulted in a Matt Weller field goal. The kick made him Ohio’s top scoring kicker.

Akron would counter with a 72-yard drive that was capped with an A.J. Fox field goal.

With both teams scuffling through most of the first half, a big blow came when Tettleton would find his favorite target, LaVon Brazill for a 78-yard touchdown with 6:17 remaining in the second quarter.

“I think it came at a good in the game,” Solich said. “Neither team had the game in control and both teams were fighting for a little bit of an advantage, but there was a lot of football to play.”

The Bobcats were able to do a much better job keeping drives alive compared to last week’s game against Ball State as they converted 11 of 14 third-down conversions.

Ohio then went on a run where they would score 27 of the next 34 points, featuring two Tettleton touchdowns (one rushing, one passing), A Beau Blankenship touchdown run and two more Matt Weller field goals.

Akron was hoping to take advantage of a banged-up Ohio defensive line by going to running back Jawon Chisolm early and often. Ohio contained him well as he only had 49 yards on 21 carries. The Zips as a team had just 81 total rushing yards.

For Ohio, Donte Harden had a good game statistically, picking up 123 yards on 22 carries, but another costly fumble saw him benched for a short while.

In addition to getting their season back on track, losses by Temple and Buffalo bring the Bobcats back into the running for the MAC East title. While the sudden change of fortunes will have the team looking to go for the kill, both the players and coaches are keeping it in perspective.

“We’ve got to play one game at a time,” cornerback Travis Carrie said. “We can’t focus on other teams.”

“I have no idea where that stands and how that all works, but obviously that helps us,” Solich said. “We’re going to have to win out in order to be in the game. We got four more to go in order to get that done and a huge one next week with Temple coming to our place.”

The Bobcats next game will be a pivotal matchup with the Temple Owls in Athens next Wednesday. Akron will play Central Michigan at home Saturday.

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About suhlmann12
journalism student at Ohio University. Huge fan of Pittsburgh sports teams

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