It was a long day at the office for the Miami University football team in an afternoon that included lightning delays, heavy rains and a few dedicated fans that stuck around to support their team. None of that helped, though, as the ‘Hawks were downed by conference foe Central Michigan University, 21-9.
“It was a very disappointing loss,” head coach Don Treadwell said. “Offensively speaking, we left a lot of plays on the field. A lot of missed opportunities there, and that’s really frustrating because the kids had a good week in practice and took advantage of a lot of the things we didn’t take advantage of today. We’re going to have to find a way to make those types of plays in each game as we move forward.”
The contest got off to a slow start, and at 10:45 of the first quarter play was called by the officials after lightning strikes were spotted a few miles away. Players and fans took shelter for nearly an hour to allow the storm to pass, after which the teams retook the field.
Miami opened the scoring on a 40-yard field goal that sophomore Kaleb Patterson squeezed through the uprights at 4:28 of the first quarter. Miami dominated the first half statistically, collecting 114 yards on the ground and 70 through the air. Nine first downs only lead to three points, however, while Central Michigan was held to just 80 yards of total offense but came away with a touchdown.
After a great defensive effort in the first half, Miami failed to contain the Chippewa rushing attack in the final two quarters. Sophomore tailback Saylor Lavallii began to find holes in the RedHawk front three and ran for 151 yards and two touchdowns when all was said and done. Both teams finished with 294 yards of total offense, which is the best offensive and defensive showing the RedHawks have had thus far in 2013. The RedHawks also achieved 16 first downs against CMU, also a season high.
“We’re so close in all aspects: passing, rushing, everything,” redshirt freshman quarterback Austin Gearing said. “We just need to execute when we get down to the red zone. I definitely believe we turned the corner a bit today.
The loss drops RedHawks to 0-5 for the first time since 2009, a season that saw Miami win just one game on Halloween night. They’ll get another shot at tasting victory against Mid-American Conference opponent the University of Massachusetts Saturday, Oct. 12.