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2018 MAC Football Game Recap: Miami RedHawks at Army Black Knights

Despite a late rally, Miami falls to Army 31-30 in a double overtime thriller.

Miami Ohio v Minnesota Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Despite being down 21-7 in the later stages of the game, the Miami RedHawks (3-5, 3-1 MAC) battled back to tie the Army Black Knights (5-2) to force overtime but a gamble on a two-point conversion in the second overtime cost the RedHawks in a 31-30 hard-fought loss. Gus Ragland carried the offense with 329 passing yards, 56 rushing yards, and four touchdowns through the air while Brad Koenig was everywhere on defense with 23 tackles and a TFL.

After a quick three-and-out by Miami to start the game, Army marched their way down the field on a 12 play, 54-yard drive capped off by a two-yard plunge to take a 7-0 lead. The RedHawks responded with a drive into Army territory thanks to a couple of big runs by Ragland and an 11-yard completion to Andrew Homer on fourth-and-three, but the drive stalled on a fourth-and-13 on the 34-yard line as another Ragland scramble came up five yards short.

The Knights’ second drive was much like the first as fullback Andy Davidson found paydirt from 11 yards out to conclude a 15 play, 74-yard drive. The momentum of the game started to shift on the ensuing kickoff as Maurice Thomas took the kick back to Miami’s 48-yard to set up the offense in good position. Ragland made some big throws on the drive as he found Nate Becker for a 13-yard gain on third-and-five and hit Kenny Young for a wide-open 34-touchdown.

Again, Army pounded the rock all the way into scoring position but Miami’s defense stood tall on the goal line as it stopped the Knights on fourth-and-goal from the one-yard line.

The ‘Hawks forced a three-and-out to begin the third quarter but the drive sputtered out due to a chop block penalty on third down by Young and they pinned Army back on its own 15-yard line. Miami was able to force another punt but was unable to do anything with it as another penalty on third down killed a once-promising drive. Cam Thomas put the Army offense on his back the following drive as he exploded for a 52-yard gain and finished the drive with a 1-yard keep for a score.

Miami responded with a lengthy drive but a deep incompletion on third-and-six and a one-yard Ragland scramble on fourth down ended the scoring chance. Another Army three-and-out gave the RedHawks another chance on offense and they capitalized on a well-orchestrated drive by Ragland as he found Jalen Walker for 12 yards on fourth-and-nine and hooked up with Dominique Robinson on a jump-ball in the end zone for the score.

A failed onside kick attempt by the ‘Hawks put Army in good position offensively but a three-and-out gave Miami one final chance to tie the game. Ragland orchestrated a clutch drive in which he converted fourth-and-three and third-and-five with passes and found Becker in the back of the endzone on fourth-and-goal to tie the game at 21-21 with 17 seconds left in regulation.

Miami started off with the ball in overtime but the drive stalled out at Army’s 15-yard line and Sam Sloman gave the ‘Hawks the first lead of the game with a field goal. The Knights were able to get into the red zone on the ensuing drive but the Miami defense stiffened and held Army to a 37-yard field goal. On their second possession in overtime, Army found paydirt from seven yards out to put the pressure squarely on Miami’s offense. The Red and White showed some intestinal fortitude as Ragland found Luke Mayock on a corner route for the 18-yard score on fourth-and-15 but the two-point conversion attempt to win the game failed.