A Complete 180: Falcons Use Stifling Defense to Clip RedHawks


A Complete 180: Falcons Use Stifling Defense to Clip RedHawks

After a poor performance and blowout loss last weekend against Buffalo, BGSU Football had to look themselves in the mirror in preparation for the Miami RedHawks. 

Spoiler alert: they got the picture. 

The Bowling Green State Falcons defeated the Miami-Ohio RedHawks 17-13 on senior day at Doyt Perry Stadium Saturday afternoon. 

The game would start with an opening drive field goal by Miami, thanks in large part to two 15-yard penalties by the Orange and Brown, which allowed Miami to get down the field. The Falcons’ first drive would stall out due to penalties, which was a common theme in the first half.

Miami would go three and out its next drive and BG would get the ball back. After putting together a great drive that would have the Falcons in the redzone, it would end in no points after Quarterback Matt McDonald would throw an interception in the endzone. 

But the Falcon defense would hold and force another three and out. After a punt, The Falcon offense would go on a 10-play, 61-yard drive, capped off by a one yard touchdown run by Freshman Tight End Harold Fannin Jr, who had his breakout game.

Both teams would remain scoreless until 48 seconds before the half, when Freshman Quarterback Aveon Smith would throw a back shoulder fade to Junior Miles Marshall for a touchdown to give Miami the lead going into halftime, 10-7.

The Falcons would get the ball to start the second half, but Running Back Ta’Ron Keith would cough up the ball on the return and give Miami great field position. But the BG defense would continue to flex it’s muscle, holding the RedHawks to just three points and keeping it a one-possession game, 13-7.

The teams would trade punts, and later on, the Falcon offense would get some momentum thanks to a 24-yard rush by Tight End Harold Fannin Jr which would lead to a Mason Lawler 22-yard field goal bringing the Falcons within 3, 13-10, late in the third quarter.

BG’s defense would force a big-time turnover on the next RedHawk drive, with Senior Linebacker Demetrius Hardamon getting a strip sack on Miami Quarterback Aveon Smith to shut down the drive and give the Falcon offense the ball back. Unfortunately, the golden opportunity with be missed, a the drive would end with no points as Mason Lawler would miss a 31-yard field goal.

But the BG defense would step up to the plate.

After forcing a Miami three and out, McDonald and Keith would capitalize as Keith would soar to the endzone from 19 yards out, the game-winning score in the end, to give the Falcons the lead 17-13. 

After giving up 466 yards of offense last week, the Falcon defense would look like a brand new team. The Falcons would shut down the Miami offense, only allowing 189 total yards and limiting the RedHawks to just 2.9 yards per carry, while holding Smith to just 91 passing yards.

Hardamon would lead the charge for the defense, registering five tackles, two sacks, and a forced fumble. Walter Haire, Darren Anders, and Karl Brooks would also have impactful plays throughout the game. 

The Bowling Green offense was dominant on the ground, rushing for 176 yards as a team. Leading the backfield was Jaison Patterson, who would rush for 94 yards on 18 carries. McDonald would manage the game well, finishing 16/29 for 149 yards and one interception. Leading receivers were Tyrone Broden, who would have three catches for 42 yards, and Fannin Jr, who would have two catches for 25 yards while also drawing two pass interference penalties.  

The Falcons improve to 3-4 on the year and 2-1 in Mid-American Conference play. Up next is a trip will to Central Michigan next Saturday to take on the Chippewas at 1 p.m. 

For more information about the team, visit bgsufalcons.com.