For the first time since the 1988 season the Ball State University football team (3-0, 1-0 MAC) has managed to start the season 3-0 after posting a 41-24 victory at Akron’s (1-2, 0-1 MAC) Rubber Bowl in its Mid-American Conference opener Saturday afternoon.
"This was a good win, but trust me we have a lot of work to do," Ball State head football coach Brady Hoke says. "We forced some turnovers and that helped us beat a good football team. We reacted well to some tipped balls and Sean Baker's fumble return for a touchdown was a real momentum play for us."
Freshman Sean Baker etched his name into the record books after scoring his first touchdown on a 33-yard fumble return at the 9:26 mark in the third quarter giving the Cardinals a 24-10 edge over the Zips. Baker totaled three interceptions to tie the school record for interceptions in a game.
"We put ourselves in the right place at the right time," Hoke says. "Our kids did a nice job in a lot of ways."
Senior cornerback B.J. Hill intercepted the ball in the closing minutes of the game for
MiQuale Lewis scored his second touchdown of the game at the 5:16 mark in the third quarter making it a 31-10 ball game. Lewis tallied his second straight 100-yard rushing game. It was the fourth 100-yard game of his career.
Sophomore kicker Ian McGarvey would then seal
With his first pass of the game, senior quarterback Nate Davis set the
McGarvey’s 31-yard field goal with 13:33 left in the second quarter increased
Baker’s second interception of the game resulted in a 1-yard touchdown run from Lewis giving the Cardinals back the lead (17-10) before heading into the half. Baker’s interception at 11:20 in the second quarter was the first of his career.
"It is nice being 3-0 and 1-0 in the MAC," Hoke says. "It says a lot for where our program is at this point. Ball State has played a lot of tough non-conference schedules in the last 20 years and those made a 3-0 start very difficult. We are glad to be undefeated at this point, but the most important thing is to be 1-0 in the MAC."
10:50 – Igor Iveljic 34-yard field goal (6 plays, 29 yards, 1:27)
13:33 – Ian McGarvey 31-yard field goal (9 plays, 55 yards, 3:20)
10:18 – Alex Allen 5-yard run (2 plays, 10 yards, 55 seconds) (Igor Iveljic kick good)
13:06 – Andrew Johnson 26-yard run (10 plays, 84 yards, 3:36) (Igor Iveljic kick good)
8:27 – Chris Jacquemain 13-yard pass to Andre Jones (5 plays, 23 yards, 1:31) (Igor Iveljic kick good)
3:04 – Ian McGarvey 32-yard field goal (12 plays, 63 yards, 5:17)