Flashes fall to Marshall in Double OT

Stephen Means II

Kent State battled back after two second half ejections, but couldn’t pull off the upset, losing to Marshall in double overtime, 36-29.

With 13:52 remaining in the game, Kent State (1-3) junior safety Nate Holley was ejected from the game with a targeting penalty.  Holley recorded 15 tackles, including 11 in the first half.

Ninety seconds later, junior cornerback Najee Murray was ejected for the same call. Marshall (3-1) scored following the ejections to take a 22-19 lead.

“I think the guys that went in there played well for us,”  said head coach Paul Haynes. “Quan (Robinson) went in there and played well for us. Nick Cuthbert, Marcus Elliott jumped in there and played well for us too.”

The Flashes responded with a 33-yard field goal from redshirt freshman kicker Shane Hynes sending the game into overtime.

Kent State struck first in overtime to take a 29-22 lead.

Following three consecutive stops on the one-yard line, Marshall’s redshirt freshman Gunnar Holcombe hooked up with freshman Davonte Allen for controversial a three-yard touchdown to tie the game at 29.

Marshall would score again in double overtime on a seven-yard touchdown run by redshirt sophomore Tony Pittman to take the lead for good, winning the game 36-29.

“(This was a) tough loss; the guys fought hard,” Haynes said. “Proud of our guys. A play here and a play there came out different, but we’re learning a lot of things.”

The loss extended the Flashes losing to Marshall to 11.

Junior Terence Waugh had a huge impact on tonight’s game, recording 11 tackles and three sacks.

“Honestly I watched a lot of film with my coach,” Waugh said. “I realized they used a different type of technique passing-wise and he just explained to me the best ways to counter that. I just did what my coach asked me to do.”

Waugh now has six and a half sacks in four games this season.

“My coach told me at the beginning of the season for me to help the team on defense, I just have to work on getting better everyday that I practice,” Waugh said. “That’s the only mindset I have had since the season has started. He said just get better everyday and see what happens. And fortunately I’ve been in the place to help my team out, and I am just thankful.”

Offensively, the Flashes started the game out hot jumping out to a 13-7 lead going into halftime.

“They made a couple of plays here and there,” Haynes said. “One a short field in overtimes it’s a little easier for them.”

Pittman led Marshall on the ground with 133 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries.

Redshirt senior Trayion Durham led the Flashes with 117 yards and one touchdown on 31 carries. Redshirt junior quarterback Colin Reardon added 187 yards passing and two touchdowns.

“There are a lot of things that we are doing well,” Haynes said. We are a heck of a lot better football team than we were in week one.  I think we’ve gotten better. We’ve learned some lessons going along the way that will be valuable for us in the future.”

Kent State will be at home again next weekend for homecoming. The Flashes take on its first Mid-American Conference opponent of the season in Miami (OH). Kick off at Dix stadium is at 3:30 p.m.

Stephen Means II is a sports reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].