Rockets Bombard Eastern Michigan, 55-16, for Fourth Straight Win
Toledo, OH – Toledo played without star running David Fluellen but it made little difference as the Rockets crushed Eastern Michigan, 55-16, at the Glass Bowl Saturday night.
Fluellen, who entered the game as the MAC’s leading rusher with 1,067 yards, watched from the sidelines with a lower left leg injury suffered a week ago vs. Bowling Green. He had to be pleased with the efforts of his teammates. The Rockets outgained the Eagles in total offense, 792-309, and built a first-half lead of 35-3 before coasting to victory in the final 30 minutes.
Fluellen’s replacement, freshman Kareem Hunt looked Fluellen-like, rushing for 168 yards on 20 carries and two touchdowns, his third consecutive game over the 100-yard mark. Senior quarterback Terrance Owens completed 18-of-24 passes for a season-high 375 yards and three TDs before calling it a night in the third quarter as head coach Matt Campbell began sending in his reserves. Junior Justin Olack was Owens’ favorite target, corralling four passes for career-high 110 yards.
Toledo upped its record to 6-3, 4-1 in MAC play, keeping pace with West Division leaders Ball State and Northern Illinois, who each have a 5-0 league record. It was the Rockets’ fourth consecutive victory. EMU fell to 1-8, 0-5 in MAC play.
The Rockets scored on their first four possessions, jumping out to a 28-0 lead before the Eagles had barely landed on the Glass Bowl turf. Toledo opened the scoring on a seven-yard TD pass from Owens to sophomore tight end Alex Zmolik. The bulk of the nine-play, 91-yard drive came from the legs of Hunt, who carried the ball five times for 40 yards, and Reedy, who caught two passes for 36 yards.
Toledo’s second score came about a minute later and took exactly one play, a 47-yard bomb from Owens to Dwight Macon to make the score 14-0 with 7:46 to play in the first quarter. Two minutes later, the score moved to 21-0 on a 30-yard run by redshirt freshman Damion Jones-Moore.
On the second play of the second quarter, Hunt got on the scoreboard with a two-yard rushing TD to make the score 28-0.
Eastern got on the board with a 41-yard field goal by Dylan Mulder with 7:43 to play in the half. Hunt came right back with a 39-yard touchdown rush, barreling over an Eagle defender and then bolting down the sidelines to make the score 35-3.
The Eagles cut the lead to 35-10 on their next possession with a 10-play, 76-yard drive capped off by a 16-yard touchdown pass from Brogan Roback to Dustin Creel. UT finished off the first half with a 20-yard field goal by Jeremiah Detmer to take a 38-10 lead into the locker room.
Toledo tacked on 17 more points in the second half. In the third quarter, Detmer made his second 20-yard field goal and Olack hauled in an 80-yard touchdown pass from Owens, his first score of the season. Redshirt freshman Marc Remy put on the icing with a nine-yard TD run with 6:50 left.
The Rockets are off next Saturday but return to the Glass Bowl on Tuesday, Nov. 12 for a critical matchup with MAC East Division leader Buffalo (6-2, 4-0 MAC).