Web-only: Flashes snap losing streak with win over Miami

Sean Ammerman

Kent State opened Mid-American Conference football play with a 14-16 win over Miami today, marking its first victory in more than a year and snapping an 11-game losing streak.

Kent State coach Doug Martin compared the MAC contest to a NASCAR race that any team could win.

Kent State simply had the “best car” today, Martin said.ÿ

“We still have a lot of improving to do but we took a giant step forward today,” Martin said. “It was a huge win, but it wasn’t so much for me as it was for our players. It has been a tough year coming off of last season.”

The game came down to Miami’s final drive with Kent State in the lead 16-8. Miami drove the ball 80 yards on 19 plays to score a touchdown on a quarterback sneak from Mike Kokal.

Miami went for the two-point conversion that would have tied the game, but Kokal overthrew his receiver, Ryan Busing, in the end zone.

With three dropped interceptions, a blocked field goal and a missed extra point, Kent State nearly gave away its chances to win.

The Flashes came out to an early lead after wide receiver Najah Pruden’s 16-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter and kicker Nate Reed’s 30-yard field goal in the second quarter. An 80-yard drive capped off by an Edelman’s quarterback sneak into the end zone made the score 16-0 in the third quarter.

Miami responded, and kept the game in reach with a touchdown and two-point conversion that stemmed from an interception and made the score 16-8.

The final drive that nearly stole the gave for Miami was kept alive after three fourth-down conversions

The win gives the Flashes a premature lead atop the Mid-American Conference East Division.