Rockets look for road victory at Western Michigan to get back in division race

October 23, 2018 | Athletics, Events
By Paul Helgren

Toledo (3-4, 1-2 Mid-American Conference) has a short week to prepare for its contest at MAC West co-leader Western Michigan (6-2, 4-0 MAC) this Thursday night.

The game will be broadcast on ESPN2.

The Rockets are coming off a 31-17 loss to Buffalo at the Glass Bowl on Saturday. The Rockets led at the break, 17-7, but were outscored by the Bulls 24-0 in the final 30 minutes.

Toledo’s defense kept it in the game, but the Rockets could not keep pace with the Bulls in the second half. UT set season highs with three interceptions and five sacks, but penalties and field position proved too much to overcome in the end.

Buffalo outgained the Rockets in total yards, 463-295, and racked up 32 first downs to just eight for UT. Junior linebacker Jordan Fisher led the Rockets with a career-best 12 tackles. Seniors Josh Teachey and Ka’dar Hollman each broke up three passes. Junior Willie Ross was credited with 2.5 sacks.

Sophomore quarterback Eli Peters was 5 of 17 for 128 yards and one TD in relief of starter Mitch Guadagni. His big play was an 80-yard TD to junior Diontae Johnson. Redshirt freshman Bryant Koback led the rushing attack with 81 yards, 70 of it coming on a first-quarter TD run.

Western Michigan (6-2, 4-0 MAC) is tied with Northern Illinois for first place in the MAC West Division. The Broncos are coming off a 35-10 victory over Central Michigan on Saturday and have won six straight games following season-opening losses to Syracuse and Michigan. WMU leads the MAC in total offense (467.1) and rushing offense (219.6). Junior Lavante Bellamy leads the MAC in rushing with 821 yards. Junior quarterback Jon Wassink is second in the MAC with 247.5 yards passing per game.

Toledo leads the series with Western Michigan, 42-30. This will be the 73rd meeting between UT and Western Michigan, dating back to 1939. The two schools have played every year since 1950.

The Rockets beat Western Michigan, 37-10, at the Glass Bowl in last year’s regular-season finale. The victory clinched the MAC West Division title for Toledo.

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