BG moved to 4-1 today with a 31-10 victory over the Akron Zips. The game was closer than that might appear, but it was still a clear and convincing victory for the Falcons over an improving Zips club.
Here's the key point. BG did not get off to a great start. Less than 10 minutes into the game, the Zips led 14-3. BG had been 3 and out once and had stalled once in the red zone.
Things were not looking good.
Here's why it was a nice victory. There was no panic on the BG side. The game plan was not abandoned, adjustments were made.
And results were achieved. First, Akron did not score again for the rest of the game. They did move the ball here and there, but they did not score again. They had only 3 first downs in the third quarter, had a deep drive result in no points in the early 4th (more later) and, again, generated some yards. For the game, 14 points and 4.8 yards per play is a pretty good day for the defense.
The offense had similar issues. After struggling for most of the half, BG got the ball back on its own 35 with about five minutes left in the half. BG put together a 10 play TD drive that scored despite giving up two sacks. The scoring play featured a juggling circus catch and run by Shaun Joplin (after a couple earlier drops) and it was 14-10.
BG then scored TDs on each of its first 3 drives of the second half to make it 31-10, the score the game would eventually finish with. Also, more on the offense in another post, but here was the game's key sequence.
BG leading 24-14, late third. Akron moved the ball upfield, got a gift penalty on BG and ended up inside the BG five. On 2nd down, they threw a pass but BG was able to hold the player just out of the end zone to force third and very short. Honestly, almost impossible for the ball to be any closer to the goal line.
Akron chose to pass and Pohl rolled right. He went to throw for the end zone and Gabe Martin was in his way and made a huge, athletic play to knock the pass down. Martin was not covering the receiver, he in the flat, and it was just a huge play.
Akron tried a FG, and sent Robert Stein out. Stein is the brother (as it turns out) of former BG kicker Stephen Stein, and all I can say is that if the Steins refused ever to return to the Doyt, I would understand. Robert Stein had the shortest FG you could ever kick, and he doinked the upright and BG had held them with no points.
BG then went on a 13-play, 8 minute TD drive with 3 3rd down conversions to make it a 17 point game. That drive featured a crazy, Dri Archer-style sideline to sideline scamper by Andre Givens.
Anyway, that was the key sequence. Akron had a chance to score and BG made a huge red zone play and then the offense took advantage by running 8 minutes off the clock and then scoring.
I know Akron is 1-4. They are getting things figured out. It won't be too much longer. In fact, I hope they win every game for the rest of the year. It was a nice win for the Falcons and one in which I think they showed themselves to be a mature and competent team that knows how to win games.