BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Nick Rice kicked a 26-yard field goal with no time left to cap a wild finish to lift Old Dominion to a 37-34 win at WKU Saturday night in Bowling Green.
Rice’s field goal was set up by three penalties and two prior untimed downs. With two seconds left, WKU ran a pass play that fell incomplete, but ODU was called for roughing the passer that set up a 57-yard field goal attempt by Alex Rinella.
The kick fell short but the Monarchs were called for too many players on the field, setting up a 52-yard field goal for Rinella. Rinella’s 52-yarder was caught at the goal line by Isaiah Harper and returned to the WKU 17, where a facemask penalty was called, adding one more untimed down, and Rice’s 26-yarder.
ODU set up the final scenario, tying the score at 34 with eight seconds left on a Travis Fulgham touchdown pass from Blake LaRussa.
The Monarchs trailed 24-17 at halftime and cut the lead to 24-19 on a safety when the Hilltoppers were called for holding in the end zone.
Rinella hit a 33-yard field goal to make the score 27-19, but Kesean Strong cut the lead with a one-yard score and LaRussa hit Cornell Hendrick for the two-point conversion to tie the score at 27.
WKU got on the board first on their opening drive, driving 80-yards on nine plays capped by a nine-yard touchdown pass from Davis Shanley to Mik’Quan Deane for a 7-0 WKU lead.
The Monarchs followed the WKU score by marching right down the field on an eight play, 72-yard drive capped by a Kesean Strong one-yard touchdown run. LaRussa scampered for a 20-yard run and completed a 27-yard pass to Travis Fulgham to the one to set up the Strong touchdown.
ODU took its first lead of the game on a Will Knight one-yard touchdown run to complete a nine play, 81-yard drive. It was Knight’s first career touchdown.
WKU tied the score at 14 with a one-yard score from Gino Appleberry.
ODU retook the lead on a 45-yard field goal from Nick Rice for a 17-14 advantage midway through the second quarter. Isaiah Harper had a 33-yard kickoff return to give ODU a drive start at their own 46.
Alex Rinella tied the score at 17 with a 41-yard field with five minutes left in the first half.
After an ODU turnover, WKU drove 71-yards in 2:47 and scored on a Davis to Kyle Fourtenbary 15-yard touchdown pass to take a 24-17 lead with 35 seconds left in the first half.
Notes: Jonathan Duhart and Travis Fulgham were game captains along with Isaiah Harper and Oshane Ximines … Kesean Strong scored his sixth rushing TD of the year and seventh overall … Tim Ward notched his first sack of the season in the first quarter … Jonathan Duhart now has a catch in 36-straight games … Will Knight scored his first career touchdown to end the first quarter … Nick Rice made his fifth-straight field goal with a 45-yarder in the second quarter … Kesean Strong recorded his first career 100-yard rushing game … Travis Fulgham scored a touchdown in his fif-straight game.