The crowds heavily favored Western Michigan as they owned all of the WMU side of the field and a good portion of the Bobcats side. It was reported that 50,000 tickets had been sold by midway through the first quarter and the fans have definitely been treated to a good game thus far, as the Western Michigan Broncos lead the Ohio Bobcats at halftime 16-7.
Ohio's first drive gained one first down before an unfortunate misplay by Quinton Maxwell resulting in a lost fumble. The Bobcats gave the Broncos a short field starting on Ohio’s 33 yard line. It was the first test for the Ohio defense and they held their grown forcing Western to a three and out on a very impressive first defensive drive. Through Ohio’s first two drives there were no passes thrown seven runs and the fumble.
In a case of deja vu the Bobcats lost the ball on the ensuing kickoff as Trevor Sweeney forced the fumble and Giovanni Ricci recovered. The Ohio defense held its ground once again after another short field and forced the Broncos to kick another field goal.
Western Michigan began to move to move the ball on their third drive finally being able to maneuver the Bobcats run defense. At the end of the first quarter, Western Michigan Broncos led 6-0 on the two Butch Hampton field goals. Hampton broke the all time WMU single season record for points scored in the first quarter and currently has 113 points and counting.
The second quarter consisted more of the same pace of play, but ddespite using nine minutes of the clock and gaining five first downs, WMU could only come up with another field goal.
The Ohio run defense has shown up in full force thus far, limiting the Broncos to 16 carries for 46 yards. Jamauri Bogan has been neutralized as he only is averaging 2.5 yards per carry on 11 carries.
Greg Windham replaced Maxwell in the second quarter after two fumbles. Windham's first pass was an absolute bomb to Papi White that put the Bobcats in the red zone for the first time. After two plays and no movement the Bobcats were faced with an all important third and goal. Windham delivered as he found Jordan Reid streaking to the end zone to put the Bobcats on the board.
The Broncos then used Corey “The Based God” Davis on their next offensive snap and he scored a 70 yard touchdown from Terrell.
The duo now has the second most touchdowns as tandem in FBS history behind Chase Clement and Jarett Dillard of the Rice Owls.
On the final possession of the first half, for the Broncos went into a two minute offense mainly out of the shotgun formation. Terrell completed 3 of 5 passes for 64 yards and touchdown to Carrington Thompson. Thompson also had an incredible catch to convert a 2nd and 20 to put the Broncos in the red zone.
It was a half that had many Western Michigan fans anxious as they were limited to three field goals on their first four drives. The Bobcats then showcased their only offense of the first half with a 67 yard heave to White and closed the gap to 9-7 Broncos. The Broncos then quickly responded with a 70 yard throw of their own to their legend Corey Davis.
Western Michigan leads 23-7 over the Bobcats with the late Thompson touchdown to end the half.
After 30 minutes we’ve seen the Ohio defense continue to keep them in the game but they were on the field for 19 minutes compared to only 11 minutes for the Broncos.
It’ll be real interesting to see if they can find it in them to stay in this game as it looks like Western Michigan is proving too much for the Bobcats.