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Freshmen backs carve up Central Michigan, lead Buffalo to 34-24 victory

Buffalo v Rutgers Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images

Buffalo Bulls Football used a blistering rushing attack on Saturday to take down Central Michigan, 34-24, to prevent a second-half comeback.

Central Michigan was the first to draw blood on the afternoon with a 40-yard field goal from Ryan Tice in the opening quarter. Unfazed, Buffalo leaned heavily on Jaret Patterson to carve up the Chippewas’ defense as Tyree Jackson finished two drives off with a 6-yard pass to Tyler Mabry and a rushing touchdown respectively. The Bulls even had a field goal from Adam Mitcheson go their way to truck to a 17-3 advantage.

The beginning of the second half was a different story for the Bulls, however. Tyree Jackson had a pass intercepted on the first drive, giving momentum to a CMU team that needed it badly. Central Michigan would score on that drive, which led to both teams trading touchdowns until UB’s 17-3 drubbing was only a 24-17, one-possession lead.

Central Michigan now had a shot to win it heading into the fourth quarter. Jackson, who finished the day at 10-20 and 127 yards, was not having a great day at all and UB’s defense couldn’t put together a stop.

But, Jackson wasn’t the only quarterback struggling in the game. The Chips’ Tommy Lazzaro wasn’t up to par and costed CMU what could’ve been a huge win for a program in a rebuilding year. When the afternoon was all said and done, the Chippewas relinquished four passes to four different Bulls defenders: Aapri Washington, Brandon Williams, Joey Banks, and Cameron Lewis.

On offense, UB’s rushing corps was outstanding. Patterson and Kevin Marks each carried the ball 18 times and eclipsed the century mark in yardage with 121 ad 167 yards respectively. The freshmen duo have been lights out this season and it’s incredible to think what kind of damage they’ll do in the years to come.

With the win, Buffalo continues to march toward being bowl eligible for just the fourth time since returning to FBS Football with a 5-1 record. We’ll see how the team puts two straight weeks of decent, but not great showings when they take on Akron at UB Stadium next Saturday at noon.