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Bobcats outmatched again in 43-10 loss to Cyclones

Ohio falls behind big early against Power Five foe


AMES, Iowa – For the second straight week, Ohio was outmatched by a Power Five school, falling 43-10 to Iowa State on Saturday at Jack Trice Stadium.

The Cyclones (3-0) were up by 24 points only a few minutes into the second quarter and slowed down little from there.

Ohio was unable to establish its line play, finishing with just 24 yards rushing, and had to take it to the air to try to get some offense going, but there were mixed results there at best, with Kurtis Rourke throwing two interceptions and losing a fumble for the Bobcats’ first three turnovers of the season. Backup Parker Navarro also lost a fumble in the fourth quarter.

On the other hand, Iowa State had little trouble offensively, finishing with 463 yards of offense while opening up a 30-3 advantage by halftime.

"We came here to win a football game, but we made some mistakes and got caught in some tough plays," Ohio coach Tim Albin. "You don't invest like our team and staff has for this not to hurt, but it's my job to continue to find ways to inspire this football team. The sun is going to come up and we're going to correct those mistakes. We're excited to come back home and be in front of our fans."

Iowa State quarterback Hunter Dekkers completed 28 of 36 passes for 268 yards and three touchdowns, with nine completions to Xavier Hutchinson for 93 yards.

The Cyclones came out and scored on their first possession, with Dekkers running in from 6 yards out to make it 7-0. Two possessions later, they struck again, aided by a short field following a shanked punt. They converted a fourth down on the way to a 14-0 lead with Dekkers throwing a 12-yard touchdown pass to DeShawn Hanika.

Before the end of the first quarter, Rourke fumbled while under pressure, and it was recovered by M.J. Anderson. Ohio’s defense limited Iowa State to a 19-yard Jace Gilbert field goal, but Rourke turned it over for the second offensive play in a row. Under pressure again, he underthrew his target and was picked off by Anthony Johnson, setting up a 3-yard touchdown run by Deon Silas that pushed the advantage to 24-0 with still 13:01 left in the half.

Later, a Dekkers fumble was recovered by Bradley Weaver, and Ohio finally got on the board, with Rourke leading a drive that resulted in a Nathanial Vakos 45-yard field goal at the 3:35 mark.

That left plenty of time for the Cyclones to answer, and they did. Dekkers completed a fourth-and-2 pass to Sean Shaw for a 15-yard touchdown and a 30-3 lead before halftime. Rayyan Buell blocked the extra point.

Rourke was intercepted a second time on a fourth-and-3 play from the Iowa State 37. Colby Reeder picked it off and returned it to the Ohio 13, and two plays later, Dekker hit Hutchinson for a 13-yard scoring pass that made it 37-3.

The Bobcat’s most successful drive of the day followed, with Rourke tossing a 1-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Foster on a fourth-and-goal play.

Navarro’s fumble led to a Gilbert 21-yard field goal with 8:08 remaining. He added one more field goal, from 39 yards, with 1:29 to go.

Rourke finished 20 of 33 passing for 194 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions, completing four passes for 48 yards to Miles Cross. Nolan McCormick was the leading rusher with 43 yards on seven carries, and he added six catches for 19 yards. Starting running back Sieh Bangura was held to 28 yards on eight carries, and the Bobcats’ two quarterbacks netted minus 47 yards rushing.

Jirehl Brock had 76 yards on seven carries for Iowa State, while Silas carried 10 times for 58 yards.

Torrie Cox Jr. led the Ohio defense with eight tackles.

"Taking the bumps and bruises, as well as learning lessons from the past few weeks and being able to apply them to this week is essential to being successful," linebacker Bryce Houston said. "Not just for this game, but the rest of the season, so we're very excited to return to Athens."

The Bobcats face Fordham at 2 p.m. Saturday at Frank Solich Field at Peden Stadium on ESPN Plus.








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