(updated 1:40 a.m.) Falcons fall to Mississippi State, 21-20 (10-12-13) PDF Print E-mail
Written by By Sentinel Sports Staff   
Saturday, 12 October 2013 23:19
STARKVILLE, Miss. — It’s a pretty safe bet Mississippi State won’t be scheduling any more games with the Bowling Green State University football team anytime in the near future.
The Falcons gave the Bulldogs more than they wanted Saturday evening as Mississippi State held on for a 21-20 victory.
‘‘I’m disappointed that we didn’t win, but that’s the only thing I’m disappointed with,’’ BG head coach Dave Clawson said. ‘‘Our effort was outstanding; our preparation was great. I thought our kids played their hearts out.’’
Bowling Green held Mississippi State scoreless in the second half, but the Falcons could not score again after pulling to within 21-20 on Matt Johnson’s 2-yard run and Tyler Tate’s PAT with 3:57 left in the third quarter.
Clawson said he thought about going for a 2-point conversion after Johnson’s score.
‘‘Usually I start going for two in the fourth quarter,’’ Clawson said. ‘‘I wanted to keep us in the game. I didn’t want to not get it, and then if they score you are down nine, and it’s a two-score game.
‘‘I just thought there was too much time left.’’
The Falcons had only three possessions after making it 21-20.
The first ended on a fourth down incomplete pass with 8:52 left in the game. Johnson was under pressure from MSU’s defense and had to throw the ball on the run.
The second ended on another fourth down incomplete pass with 1:15 remaining to play, as BG had from its own 6-yard line, after the defense had held MSU on downs, to the 45-yard line.
Johnson’s pass went off the pads of Ryan Burbrink on fourth down, although it appeared there was a helmet-to-helmet hit on Burbrink after the pass was incomplete.
‘‘I didn’t see the helmet-to-helmet,’’ Clawson said.
‘‘All we want is a shot, and we gave ourselves that shot,’’ Johnson said. ‘‘Unfortunately we were just a little short.’’
Bowling Green then got the ball back with three seconds remaining and 71 yards from the end zone. A scramble play after a 21-yard pass to Jared Cohen ended in a fumble for the Falcons.
‘‘I don’t know if we played a great defensive game tonight for the entire duration,” MSU head coach Dan Mullen said, “but we have to trust in our guys on defense and trust in our guys to make plays and step up in key moments. We talked about finishing the game, and I’ll tell you what: the one thing we did tonight was finish the game.”
Mississippi State led 14-3 after the first quarter.
‘‘We dropped a few passes,’’ Clawson said about BG’s early ineffectiveness on offense. ‘‘We protected well; we had a good mix run and pass.
‘‘We dropped three balls in the first quarter that we normally catch,’’ Clawson added. ‘‘One was for a third-down conversion, and the others were for big plays.’’
Bowling Green put together a 96-yard touchdown drive to pull within 14-10 with 4:15 left in the first half.
Mississippi State responded with a 75-yard TD drive with 1:04 left in the half to go ahead 21-10.
The Falcons got a 45-yard field goal from Tyler Tate on the final play of the first half to make it 21-13.
‘‘At halftime we had a lot of momentum,’’ Clawson said.
Clawson said nothing changed offensively for the Falcons after the first quarter, other than they caught the ball.
‘‘We were just executing; we were calling the same plays that we were calling in the very beginning of the game,’’ Johnson said. ‘‘We just performed at a higher level.’’
Bowling Green also struggled defensively in the early going, but improved tackling helped the Falcons stay in the game.
‘‘I would love to tell you we made some brilliant adjustment, we just did a much better job of tackling in the second half,’’ Clawson said. ‘‘We didn’t call anything different.’’

Bowling Green    3    10    7    0    —    20
Mississippi St.    14    7    0    0    —    21
First Quarter
MSSt—Perkins 1 run (Bell kick), 9:58. (Drive: 9 plays, 75 yards, 5:02).
BG—FG Tate 35, 5:36. (Drive: 4 plays, minus-4 yards, 1:50)
MSSt—Prescott 75 run (Bell kick), 5:24. (Drive: 1 play, 75, yards, 0:12)
Second Quarter
BG—Givens 7 run (Tate kick), 4:15. (Drive: 6 plays, 96 yards, 2:31).
MSSt—Prescott 10 run (Bell kick), 1:04. (Drive: 10 pays, 75 yards, 3:11)
BG—FG Tate 45, :00. (Drive: 6 plays, 48 yards, 1:04)
Third Quarter
BG—Johnson 2 run (Tate kick), 3:57. (Drive: 7 plays, 76 yards, 3:15)
BG    MSSt
First downs    21    23
By rushing    7    13
By passing    11    9
By penalty    3    1
Rushes-yards    29-160    41-245
Passing    224    177
Comp-Att-Int    20-34-0    19-25-1
Avg. gain per play    6.1    6.4
Sacks-yards lost    1-1    2-13
Punts-Avg.    2-48.5    2-41.0
Punt returns    0-0    1-1
Kickoff returns    2-31    2-46
Fumbles-Lost    1-1    0-0
Penalties-Yards    4-30    9-71
3rd-down conversions    4-11    4-11
4th-down conversions    0-2    1-3
Red-zone conversions    3-3    2-3
Time of Possession    27:46    32:14
RUSHING—Bowling Green, Tra.Greene 15-99, Johnson 6-29, Givens 4-24, Hopgood 3-10, Team 1-(minus 2). Mississippi St., Prescott 15-139, Perkins 16-83, Lewis 5-15, J.Robinson 2-5, Russell 3-3.
PASSING—Bowling Green, Johnson 20-34-0—224. Mississippi St., Russell 12-14-0—102, Prescott 7-11-1—75.
RECEIVING—Bowling Green, Cohen 5-51, Burbrink 4-66, Joplin 4-40, Beck 2-33, Tra.Greene 2-(minus 1), Moore 1-15, Bayer 1-5, Hopgood 1-2, Flewellyn 0-13. Mississippi St., Morrow 4-57, Lewis 4-34, Perkins 4-21, R.Johnson 2-16, Ross 1-17, J.Robinson 1-16, Wilson 1-6, Holloway 1-5, M.Johnson 1-5.
Last Updated on Sunday, 13 October 2013 12:10

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