Miami Takes Control of West Virginia Just Before Halftime 21 – 7 in Russell Athletic Bowl
ORLANDO, FL – The Miami Hurricanes are taking control of 16th ranked West Virginia University at halftime 21 – 7 in the Russell Athletic Bowl. In what has been a close contest it’s been a battle of West Virginia’s high powered offense against the brick wall that is the Miami defense and the Miami offense against themselves.
The Mountaineers found themselves up early on in the contest 7 – 0 behind the ability of quarterback Skylar Howard and the run pass options his team presented. The Hurricanes defense had problems stopping Howard on rollouts and really sliced through the ‘Canes on the way to their first touchdown. Howard on the drive had a nice 24 yard run up the middle that set up running back Kennedy McKoy for a six yard score. That was really the last time of the half West Virginia looked potent.
Miami’s offense through two and a half quarters looked atrocious. Just awful but finally broke through after only managing about 40 yards up until 6 minutes and 30 seconds left in the second quarter when freshman wide out Ahmmon Richards took a short pass to the house for 51 yards tying the ball-game. This was followed by next possession Miami stringing together a six play 59 yard drive that led to a wide open Malcolm Lewis for a three yard touchdown. Lewis is a senior in his final game.
As the half was winding down Miami had one more chance to stretch out the lead behind their defense that has been lights out. The next possession brought a five play 70 yard drive to put Miami up two scores right before halftime. It was truly shocking to see this offense kick into that kind of gear so suddenly after looking like breaking a bowl punting record(which they still may do). Miami now has 215 total yards to West Virginia’s 104.
Miami’s defense has West Virginia reeling. Miami is 0-6 on third down conversions but is hold the Mountaineers to just four of 12 while also racking up three sacks and a turnover off an early fumble. If Miami’s defense can continue putting up this kind of pressure it’ll be difficult to see West Virginia closing the gap, but this high powered offense could flip the switch at anytime and make this a game again.
- Darrell Wilkinson MiamiSportsNative.com
- Twitter: @DarrellW_Sports
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