The Bowling Green Falcons returned home to the friendly confines of Doyt Perry Stadium, where they are undefeated this season. The Falcons looked to not have their homecoming party spoiled by the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs.
The Falcons would welcome back star tailback Andrew Clair, who had missed last week’s drubbing to Kansas State with an injury.
Before a large crowd, the Falcons opened the game with a seven-play, 68-yard scoring drive capped off by a one-yard touchdown run by Bryson Denley, one of Bowling Green’s many solid backs.
But the Bulldogs would waste little time responding, with a three-play, 60-yard scoring drive of their own With veteran QB J’Mar Smith connecting with TCU transfer Isaiah Graham from 49 yards out.
A Darius Wade pick-six on Bowling Green’s next drive would put the Bulldogs ahead for good, as star Tech corner Amik Robertson returned it for 36 yards and the score.
The Falcons last gasp came early in the second quarter, as the Bulldogs shanked a punt to set Bowling Green up with excellent field position at the 29 yard line, trailing 14-7. In a defining moment, the Falcons were denied as they turned the ball over on downs at the six-yard line.
It took just four plays for Louisiana Tech to travel 94 yards for another score, as Jaqwis Dancy scored the first of his two rushing touchdowns (this one from eight yards out) to go up 21-7 on BGSU.
21-7 would remain the score until the early fourth quarter, when Dancy capped off a five-play, 65-yard drive with a two yard plunge to go up 28-7.
Smith would find Smoke Harris for a 27-yard strike with 10:19 to go in the fourth to push the Bulldog lead to 35-7, where it would stay until the clock struck zero.
Darius Wade was just 18-of-36 for the Falcons with a costly pick six, but did account for 171 yards passing and 48 via the ground against a Tech squad who has historically been strong defensively.
Davon Jones continued his strong senior season as the Boston College transfer ran for 48 yards to tie Wade for the team lead on 13 carries. In his return to action, Clair was held largely in check as he had 11 carries for just 22 yards rushing, good for an un-Clair like 1 yard per carry average. Denley had the Falcons only score with his first quarter touchdown.
Receiving-wise, Quintin Morris had a team high six receptions for 90 yards to continue his underrated season. Clair would add three receptions while as three other Falcons had multiple receptions.
Defensively, the Falcons had five sacks and forced two turnovers. Kholbe Coleman had a sack and 13 total tackles, while Brandon Perce added an interception.
Matt Naranjo had an excellent day across eight punts, with four downed inside the twenty. His efforts were a large reason why the score stayed stagnant for so long by forcing Tech to have long fields.
For the Bulldogs, Smith looked every bit of the experienced starter that he is, finishing with 267 yards and two touchdowns on a 19-of-26 effort but was sacked five times.
Justin Henderson led the Bulldogs with 95 yards rushing, of which 75 came on one carry. Dancy had 31 yards and two touchdowns across eight carries.
Adrian Harris had six catches for 94 yards and Smoke Harris had five receptions for 64 yards with a touchdown. Isaiah Graham had a 49 yard touchdown for his only catch. Dancy and Cee Jay Powell each had three catches as part of a deep position group.
Corner Amik Robertson looked like a future NFL draft choice, with his 36 yard pick six and ten tackles. L’Jarius Sneed and James Jackson each had nine tackles for the Dogs.
The Falcons fell to 1-2 with the loss as the Bulldogs improved to 2-1.
BGSU travels on Saturday to in-state rival Kent State, who is 1-2 but their two losses have come to undefeated power five schools in Arizona State and Auburn.