While the Bobcats started out of the gates with a bang Saturday, it took them grinding out all they could muster to earn a late 27-21 victory over the Mean Green of North Texas.
Tyler Tettleton hooked up with Chase Cochran on the very first play from scrimmage on a deep ball up the right hash. 10 seconds in, and 75 yards later, the Ohio Bobcats led 7-0. It more than likely came as a surprise that Ohio shot out of the gates with a play-action deep ball after running the ball seemingly every first down play a week ago against Louisville.
Two Matt Green late field goals proved to be the difference in the contest. Green had missed his first three field goals of the year, but he came through in a crucial time for Ohio. Green's 38-yard field goal provided the winning points with 8:08 remaining in the fourth. Green also added a 22-yarder with 1:23 remaining just for good measure.
That second field goal after a 62-yard drive in which Chase Cochran hauled in a circus catch to bring the 'Cats to the Mean Green 25. On either side of that catch, Ryan Boykin and Beau Blankenship split a few carries, accounting for 30 yards on the drive.
Xavier Hughes, in a bit of tip-drill football, brought in an interception to seal the deal.
On the night, Boykin rushed for 93 yards on 19 carries. Blankenship would took less of the load against the Mean Green, only carrying 14 times for 83 yards. Blankenship struggled to get on track early on as the Ohio offensive line failed to get much of a push. Head coach Frank Solich inserted Boykin into the lineup to shake things up a bit, and it proved effective in helping the Bobcats score their second touchdown, a 10-yard pass from Tettleton to Boykin to put the 'Cats up 14-7.
Relative unknown Jovon Johnson came on to recover a fumble, and return an interception for a touchdown (with the latter coming early in the second). At the time, it was a 21-7 Bobcat lead.
North Texas intercepted Tyler Tettleton twice in the third quarter and went on to have scoring drives to even the game up at 21, but that would be all the Mean Green could muster.
Tettleton finished the evening 19/30 passing for 239 yards, 2 touchdowns and two interceptions. The Bobcats gained 445 yards with 206 coming on the ground. The defense yielded 303 total yards and kept many of the Mean Green skill players under wraps.
It may have been closer than the Bobcats would have liked, but Solich's group will take it, as they head into a week to prepare for Marshall.