Griffons Fly Past Bronchos
UCO running back Jake Standlee, 20, fends off MWSU defender Tyrell Robison, 29, during the Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 game at Missouri Western. The Bronchos lost to the Griffons 41-37. (Provided/ John Ellis,MWSU Athletics).
The University of Central Oklahoma’s late-game comeback attempt fell short for the second straight week as they lost 41-37 to Missouri Western this past Saturday.
“These guys show they are going to fight to the last second every time we step out on the field,” head coach Nick Bobeck said. “We’ve had a chance to win every game, and I think we should be 4-0, but the bottom line is we’re not. We have to correct the mistakes we’re making to start winning some football games.”
Missouri Western struck first with a 25-yard touchdown to take an early 7-0 lead. After a Jay Tedesco punt pinned Missouri Western at its own 1-yard line, the defense forced taking over at the Missouri Western 39-yard line. From there, quarterback Chas Stallard hit wide receiver J.T. Luper for a 38-yard gain that set up a 1-yard touchdown run by backup quarterback Chandler Garrett to cut the lead to one as a blocked extra point made it a 7-6 game.
Two plays later, Missouri Western hammered home a 71-yard touchdown run and convert the two-point conversion to make it a 15-6 lead middle the first quarter. The Bronchos would not be outdone as running back Quan Hogan exploded for a 75-yard touchdown run to make it a 15-13 game, with both teams combining for over 300 yards of offense before the end of the first quarter. After a pair of stops, Stallard found Luper again for a touchdown giving the Bronchos a 20-15 lead that held through the half.
Kicker Alex Quevedo hit a 24-yard field goal to open up the second half for the Bronchos giving them a 23-15 lead. On the following drive, linebacker Colton Lindsey forced a fumble but after a scrum for the ball, Missouri Western scooped it up and took it 45-yards into the endzone to cut the lead to 23-21 after they missed the extra point.
Following a missed Quevedo field goal, Missouri Western put up six more points as they hauled in a 25-yard touchdown pass to take a 27-23 lead after the PAT was blocked by Broncho defensive end Jared Lopes. The Bronchos would respond as Hogan would punch it in from 12-yards to give the Bronchos a 30-27 lead. Missouri Western responded with a 48-yard touchdown pass to take a 34-30 lead with 3:23 left in the game.
The Bronchos came back swinging as Stallard would find Luper again for an 83-yard touchdown to take a 37-34 lead with 2:24 to go. Missouri Western would respond with a 68-yard touchdown pass to take a 41-37 lead. The Bronchos offense stalled on the following drive as Stallard was sacked on a 4th & 1 with 46 seconds left. They would get a stop on the following drive and get the ball back with 24 seconds left.
Starting at their own 31-yard line the Bronchos moved the ball down to the Missouri Western 25-yard line with three seconds left giving them one last shot at the endzone. Unfortunately, Stallard’s pass to Luper fell incomplete as it was tipped at the last second securing the win for Missouri Western.
“We made some plays that cost us”, Bobeck said. “This game comes down to one play, the final play, but if we don’t make some of those other mistakes then this game is different.”
Stallard finished 18-34 passing with two touchdowns and career high 383 yards. He also added 76 yards on the ground to reach 459 yards of total offense, the third most in a single game in school history.
A big chunk of those passing yards came from Luper who continued his strong play hauling in eight catches for 253 yards and two touchdowns and had catches of 83 and 85 yards.
“That kid is special”, Bobeck said. “He is so talented and so athletic, plus he works his tail off. When you add that together, that’s what you get.”
Hogan finished his career day with 12 carries for 126 yards and two touchdowns as he helped the offense put up a season-high 612 yards.
“That kid is really talented”, Bobeck said. “He is being asked to do a lot but he is so talented. I think you saw tonight the kind of potential he has.”
Linebacker Alex Figueroa led the defense with 14 tackles, three for loss, and one sack. Lindsey finished with 12 tackles including two for loss.
The Bronchos will look to get back on track as they host Emporia State at Wantland Stadium this Saturday at 2 p.m.