Sophomore Terry Swanson rushed for 161 yards and junior Kareem Hunt added two scores to lead No. 24 Toledo to a 38-7 Homecoming victory before 23,118 in the Glass Bowl Saturday afternoon.
Toledo (5-0, 2-0 Mid-American Conference) moves to 5-0 for the first time since 2001. Kent State falls to 2-4, 1-1 MAC.Toledo’s defense continued its dominance, holding Kent State to 257 yards of total offense, including just 83 yards in the second half. Senior defensive end Trent Voss led the way with six tackles, three tackles for loss and three quarterback hurries. KSU’s only score came on a fumble recovery in the end zone following a snap that sailed over punter Nick Ellis’ head. In the last three games, Toledo’s defense has given up one touchdown — a 51-yard touchdown pass vs. Ball State Oct. 3.
Hunt, playing in his first game since suffering a hamstring injury vs. Iowa State Sept. 19, rushed for 85 yards on 16 carries. He scored on runs of two and one yards. Swanson added an 88-yard run that set up one of Hunt’s scores as well as a 23-yard TD.
Senior quarterback Phillip Ely completed 19 of 32 passes for 205 yards and two touchdowns. Sophomore Cody Thompson caught four passes for 65 yards and one score. Once again, the offensive line did not allow a sack, moving the streak to 173 passes without a sack this season.
Toledo’s day started off with couple of hitches. Diontae Johnson took the opening kickoff 89 yards for a touchdown that was brought back due to an illegal block. The Rockets failed to move the ball, and the ensuing snap went over Nick Ellis’ head and was recovered by Kent State in the end zone, putting the Golden Flashes up, 7-0, before many of the Rocket faithful had settled in their seats.
Toledo’s second drive stalled at the KSU 25-yard line, and Jameson Vest’s 42-yard field goal was wide left. The Rockets finally broke through to tie the score late in the first quarter on four-yard pass from Ely to senior wide receiver Corey Jones.
The Rockets extended the lead to 14-7 on a 23-yard score by Swanson with 11:51 left in the second quarter. Vest made it 17-7 moments later with a 41-yard field goal.
Swanson set up Toledo’s next score with an 88-yard run to the KSU two-yard line. It was the longest run of Swanson’s career and tied for fourth longest in Toledo history. Hunt took it the rest of the way on the next play with a two-yard run, giving UT a 24-7 halftime lead.
Toledo made it 31-7 on a one-yard run by Hunt that capped a nine-play, 80-yard drive with 3:42 left in the third quarter. The Rockets finished off the scoring with a seven-yard TD pass from Ely to sophomore Thompson early in the fourth quarter.
The Rockets return home next week, hosting Eastern Michigan in a noon kickoff.