Victory Cannon headed to Kalamazoo, as CMU football falls to WMU
With a minute remaining and down by two points, redshirt freshman Jase Bauer stepped into the huddle looking to secure Central Michigan football’s first victory against Western Michigan in Kelly/Shorts Stadium since 2010.
However, the Chippewas’ final attempt to secure the win came up short as Bauer underthrew a pass to sophomore wide receiver Jalen McGaughy which ended up in the hands of a Bronco defender.
After two knees, WMU secured the Victory Cannon with a 12-10 win on Wednesday.
CMU falls to 4-7 on the season and 3-4 in the Mid-American Conference.
"Obviously, disappointing finish," said head coach Jim McElwain. "Hats off to them and what they were able to do shutting us down defensively. They had a great plan to handle (Emanuel) and we didn't do a good job getting it adjusted and it came down to they made the plays when they needed."
With snow piling up on the field ahead of the game, the Broncos started the scoring in the first quarter as junior running back Sean Tyler scampered for 53-yards on their first drive.
19 seconds later freshman quarterback Bert Emanuel Jr. ran to the right sideline, however, as the hole closed up, he reversed field turning the play into a 60-yard touchdown. It was Emanuel’s first start as a Chippewa.
As halftime neared, WMU lined up for a 26-yard field goal to take a lead into the break. But sophomore cornerback Donte Kent burst through the line and blocked the attempt which senior defensive end Thomas Incoom corralled. It was Kent’s first career field goal block.
"Get the most yards I can, put the offense in a good position," Incoom said. "That's what I was thinking about, you know, not trying to make something extraordinary happen. I just want to get the best yards for the offense to get a better chance so we can win."
After two quarters the Broncos had 199 rushing yards compared to 92 for CMU.
Although both teams’ offenses struggled to gain yards in the second half, the Chippewas broke through with 5:30 remaining in the third quarter as Bauer connected with redshirt freshman wide receiver Tyson Davis for 36 yards.
Moments later, CMU took its first lead of the game, 10-7, on a 24-yard field goal from sophomore kicker Marshall Meeder.
The Chippewas maintained the lead into the fourth quarter as their defense shut down the WMU rushing attack, allowing 56 rushing yards in the second half.
With time winding down, CMU sent Emanuel under center looking to hold its three-point lead. However, backed up on his goal line, Emanuel attempted to break free but was taken down in the end zone, making it a 10-9 game.
On the next drive, WMU marched down the field in eight plays and took the lead back on a 25-yard field goal.
The Chippewas tried to rally a comeback, but Bauer’s final pass ended up in the hands of a Bronco defender as they won 12-10.
Emanuel finished the day with 98 rushing yards while adding 32 passing yards on a 3-for-3 performance. Bauer ended with 21 rushing yards, 62 passing yards and one interception.
After sitting out against Buffalo, Lew Nichols III returned to the CMU backfield on Wednesday. He ended the day with 35 rushing yards on 10 attempts.
Davis led the Chippewa receivers with 39 receiving yards on two catches. McGaughy ended the day with two catches for 29 yards.
WMU finished with 357 total yards, compared to 253 for CMU.
The Chippewas finish their season against Eastern Michigan in Ypsilanti, on Nov. 25 at noon.