Not one, not two, not three, not four, but eight. That's how many chances the Miami Univeristy football team had to tie the game against Central Michigan University from inside the CMU 14-yard line. But, the RedHawks couldn't convert any of them.
The plays went incomplete pass, defensive pass interference, defensive pass interference, sack, incomplete pass, incomplete pass, defensive pass interference and another incomplete pass to end the game. The third defensive pass interference gave Miami a final, untimed down, but an out route to freshman wide receiver Sam Martin just grazed off his fingertips and the Chippewas escaped with a 34-27 win.
If Martin could do it over again, he would change his play call on the down when fifth-year quarterback Andrew Hendrix was sacked.
"We had our bread and butter call on down there," Martin said. "They brought pressure. Andrew should have got us out of the call. But, I think he thought he could get rid of it. He needed to protect us and give us a better chance. If I don't make the call, he doesn't miss the check. That's the hindsight … That's the one that really stings. We were probably going take at least one crack at running it, because we had timeouts and we're on the 1."
Sophomore wide out Rokeem Williams, who had seven catches for 121 yards, thought Miami was going to score the whole time.
"I thought it was one of those games where we were going have a good ending to it," Williams said. "Come back and score for sure. There wasn't a doubt in mind that we were going to make those plays."
As many teams have done against the RedHawks this season, CMU was effective running the football. The Chippewas racked up 209 yards on 40 carries.
"Like all good running teams, they took over in the second half," Martin said. "[They had] 55 yards rushing in the first half and that's what they do … we still got enough stops to give us a chance to win the game, which was all we were looking for."
Miami had some success on the ground, picking up 102 yards on 27 carries.
"We ran it enough to keep them honest," Martin said. "We didn't run it great, we can't run it great."
Hendrix once again carried the RedHawks through the air, completing 24 of 41 for 369 yards and two touchdowns.
Despite the loss, Martin was pleased with the way the 'Hawks played.
"To me, there are a lot of positives because we played good football," Martin said. "It wasn't painful to watch. I'm glad we beat Kent and I would have rather won 10-3 today, but it was painful to watch what we were doing out there [against Kent]. We weren't playing good football."
Miami has one game left this season, a Tuesday night game against rival Ohio University. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 25 at Yager Stadium.