It seemed like FAU was finally about to break their three game losing streak, but a late touchdown gave the University of Louisiana Monore a 20-17 win on Saturday, Oct. 9th.
The first quarter of play remained scoreless, but was a very sloppy fifteen minuets of football. On its first drive, FAU (1-4, 0-2) drove down the field, but ULM (2-3, 1-1) defensive back Theo Smith cut the Owls drive short as he intercepted quarterback Jeff Van Camps touchdown pass at the one yard line.
Late in that quarter, ULM attempted its first of two faked a punts, the second happening in the fourth quarter. Punter Aaron Munoz passed to third string quarterback Zack Rhodes for 56 yards which set up the War Hawks on the FAU five yard line.
A power struggle in the Owls red zone ensued as ULM quarterback Kolton Browning fumbled and recovered by FAU’s defensive end Corey Henry. On the next play starting on the Owls 18 yard line, a high snap zipped past Van Camp’s hands and rolled to the FAU one yard line where Van Camp recovered as the first quarter came to an end. The very first play of the second quarter, FAU on its own one yard line, defensive end Ken Doresey sacked Van Camp in the end zone for a safety giving ULM a 2-0 lead.
Although the War Hawks completely shut out FAU 12-0 in the first half, the Owls came out of the locker room looking like a new team. Finally, running back Alfred Morris got the majority of touches and broke 100 yards for only the second time this season. Morris totaled 30 carries for 153 yards and two touchdowns. Following a 28 yard field goal by kicker Ross Gornall, an impressive drive down the field by Morris was topped off by a goal line burst making the score 12-10.
Penalties continued to haunt the Owls and cause missed opportunities throughout the game. The biggest mistake came late in the third quarter as FAU recovered a muffed punt, but their celebration was cut short as the recovery was negated by an offside call on FAU.
Following that drive, ULM was pushed back in their own red zone and decided to attempt its second fake punt which was baffling due to the fact that they attempted this in their own one yard line. The ball was snapped to wide receiver Aaron Munoz who rushed for 14 yards but fell short of the first down giving FAU a start at the ULM 26 yard line. The Owls took advantage of their field position as Morris once again marched the team down the field and pounded the ball into the end zone on a three yard dive giving them the lead for the first time in the game.
It was now all up to the FAU defense who had been playing rather well so far in the second half. However, it was the offense who goofed up as another bad snap caused Van Camp to fumble which was recovered by the War Hawks on the ULM 45 yard line. This set up a drive that ended with a five yard touchdown sprint by ULM running back Jyruss Edwards. A two point conversion pass by Browning to wide recover Brent Leonard sealed a 20-17 victory for the War Hawks.
Bottom Line: The first half of this game was sloppy by both teams with huge mistakes in the red zone. Although they lost, FAU’s defense looked a little better. It’s the offense I’m worried about now. Two bad snaps and penalties caused this game to slip out of FAU’s grasp. The Owls are on a much needed bye next week. I expect them to do something productive this time and come back to put up a fight against Arkansas State University.
For more on this game, visit: upressonline.com
About the Author
Written by Mark Gibson
Mark Gibson is a senior media communications major at Florida Atlantic University. He is a staff reporter who covers sports and entertainment for the FAU student Newspaper, University Press. He also runs a podcast and website that reviews video games and new electronics. On his downtime, he loves playing his guitar and currently plays bass in a local band.