Flashes ground Rockets

Deanna Stevens

Kent State defeats Toledo

Sophomore quarterback Julian Edelman is hit by several Toledo players during a fourth quarter run. Edelman finished with 73 rushing yards and the Flashes defeated the Rockets 40-14. SEAN DAUGHERTY | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: Jason Hall

Kent State’s football team ran away with a 40-14 victory over Toledo – literally.

Behind runningback Eugene Jarvis’ career-high 179-yard, three touchdown performance, the Flashes (5-2) begin Mid-American Conference play 4-0 for the first time in Kent State history.

It was the first game for Jarvis after being sidelined since the second half against Akron with an ankle injury.

The first of his 31 carries was a fake reverse that resulted in a 43-yard pick up.

“That was a good play for me,” Jarvis said. “It got me jump-started, and let me know that I’m back, and I’m ready to go.”

As a team, the Flashes put up 348 yards in offense, 270 of those came on the ground.

Sophomore quarterback Julian Edelman was second running the ball with 73 yards on 13 carries, including a 26-yard touchdown run in the first quarter.

He threw a touchdown pass to senior Najah Pruden in the third quarter. Edelman completed eight passes on 15 attempts for 78 yards and one interception.

Toledo (2-5, 0-3 MAC) also helped the record-setting cause with some pre-game antics.

“The worst mistake Toledo made was coming in jumping on our logo before the game and calling our kids out before the game,” Martin said. “Because we answered. Pretty soon, people are going to stop treating us that way.”

While the Rockets were getting a feel for the logo, the Flashes were finding their way to the end zone. Kent State scored 26 points in the first half, and Toledo was held scoreless.

“There was a lot of talking going on before the game, and I’m proud of our kids for doing their talking in between the whistles,” Martin said.

Junior defensive back Jack Williams said the Rockets’ actions were a total lack of respect.

“That’s like someone coming to your house and putting their feet on your coffee table,” Williams said. “That’s disrespect.”

Williams had two interceptions, one of which he returned 44 yards for a touchdown.

Toledo coach Tom Amstutz said the turnovers were deadly to the Rockets’ offense.

“Obviously we threw a turnover for a touchdown, and we made a nice catch, and fumbled it,” Amstutz said. “That’s huge in these types of football games. We got to take better care of the football and get our rhythm back on offense.”

Along with the two interceptions, the Flashes forced the Rockets into three fumbles, two of which were recovered by Kent State.

They also sacked freshman quarterback Aaron Opelt three times and sophomore quarterback Clint Cochran once for a loss of 16 yards.

Martin said the defense, which has a 22-person rotation, is performing well because of the units’ speed.

“Even when we make a mistake, we can make up for it because of the speed factor, particularly in the back end,” Martin said. “We did a good job of giving the quarterback some different looks and disguising things. Once they couldn’t run the ball they put it all in his hands.”

Contact football reporter Deanna Stevens at [email protected].