WARRENSBURG, Mo. — The University of Central Oklahoma football team dropped a 44-26 road decision to Central Missouri Saturday in Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association action at Walton Stadium.
"We played well in the first quarter and that's been a goal of ours, but we didn't play well in all four quarters. That was a problem tonight and against this team, you can't do that," UCO head football coach Nick Bobeck said.
Central Oklahoma had a solid performance passing the football Saturday. Keats Calhoon got the start and was 13-for-27 for 144 yards. Will Collins, who came in for Calhoon after a second-half injury, went 8-for-16 for 83 yards. But a pair of position players had the biggest plays.
Johnny Bizzell IV had a 31-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter and Saboor Daniels made a 46-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter. Both came on double-pass plays, catching Central Missouri's defense off guard.
Amonte Phillips led the receiver corps. The sophomore had 11 catches for 135 yards and one touchdown – from Daniels. Taj Griffin had two catches for 32 yards and one score – from Bizzell IV.
O'Shay Harris led the team with nine tackles. Darrius Winston and Jeremiah Hill both had eight tackles.
Central Oklahoma built a 13-0 lead in the game after one quarter of play. The Bronchos took the opening kickoff and marched down the field, going up 3-0 after a 32-yard field goal from Alex Quevedo capped off a 61-yard scoring drive.
On the ensuing kickoff, Dylan Buchheit forced a fumble that Winston recovered at the UCM 17, and four plays later, Central led 6-0 after a 26-yard field goal from Quevedo.
Central then forced a turnover on downs, and on 1st & 10 from the UCM 31, Bizzell IV caught a pass behind the line of scrimmage on the left side of the field and heaved a pass of his own down field to Griffin, who found his way into the end zone for the score that made it 13-0. Bizzell IV caught a 37 yard pass on the previous play on 3rd & 17 to give the Bronchos that first down.
After one quarter of play however, Central Missouri's league-leading offense kicked it into high gear. UCM scored on three of the next four possessions to to go up 17-13 at halftime. The Mules then scored on four of five possession to open the second half and build a 44-20 lead.
Daniels had a 19-yard touchdown run to cap off a 7-play, 81-yard scoring drive in the fourth quarter to make it 44-26. He led the team in rushing with 45 yards on 10 carries. Griffin had 15 yards, Calhoon and Chandler Garrett each had 13, and Collins had 11 to give Central Oklahoma 97 for the game.
Harris added one pass break-up to go with his team-high nine tackles and Hill had one as well to go with his eight tackles. Jakarri Hunt also broke up a pass and ahd five tackles, and Chris Lewis gave Central four passes defended as he added two stops. Kolby Underwood, who had three tackles, added an interception. Drequan Brown made four tackles on the day, including one sack.
The Bronchos, now 2-4 on the season, will return home in Week 7, taking on Missouri Western at 1 p.m Saturday, Oct. 19 at Wantland Stadium.