Calvin Mattheis | Ohio Athletics

Ohio Loses in Triple Overtime

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Ohio Football made its return to Peden Stadium in a record breaking season opener, as the ‘Cats fell to the Texas State Bobcats 56-54 in triple overtime.

On the first play of triple overtime Texas State quarterback Tyler Jones tossed a pitch to freshman quarterback L.G. Williams, after faking the sweep Williams immediately flicked it back across the field to Jones for the easy halfback pass touchdown and a 56-48 lead.

Ohio had one more shot and it all came down to the final snap of the game when Greg Windham was dropped for a sack on Ohio’s two-point conversion attempt that would’ve tied it at 56. Moments earlier in the fourth quarter, Ohio seemed ready to run out the clock when Windham committed a crucial mistake, fumbling the ball on a read option, and giving it back to the Texas State offense, who would go on to tie the game with a field goal as time expired.

Windham commented on the play post-game, “I don’t have anything for you, I just fumbled the ball, that’s all there is to it.”

Ohio’s fate was tied to Windham’s play all game as he struggled to find a rhythm early in his first career start, going 12-23 from the field for 129 yards in the first half. Windham was overthrowing receivers early and often leaving Ohio with a 14-6 deficit at the half.

Windham came out of the locker room a new man, leading the Bobcats on four scoring drives before falling just short of victory, finishing 27-45, for 380 yards, four touchdowns and the late fumble.

Defense in this game was almost nowhere to be found as the two teams combined for 1,176 total yards of offense. Texas State was led by senior quarterback Tyler Jones who completed 40 of 55 passes for 418 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions. Jones was in command the entire game, running the Bobcat spread attack with poise and never letting the momentum swings affect him.

Safety Kylan Nelson was a lone bright spot for the Ohio defense, intercepting Texas State’s Tyler Jones in the red zone twice in the second quarter, Nelson was crucial to keeping Ohio in the game while Windham and the offense worked through their growing pains.

This wasn’t the only loss for Ohio tonight as its leading-rusher from last season, A.J. Oullette, left the game early in the first quarter after injuring his ankle on a 40-yard run up the middle.

“I don’t know the details yet but it looks like it will be a costly injury,” Coach Frank Solich said. “Obviously not having A.J. had an impact, but I’m thankful for the depth at that position.”

Ohio will now regroup and get ready for next Saturday’s matchup with Kansas, a team that has won just three games in the last two seasons.