The University of Findlay football team came up short against Wayne State University on Saturday, Oct. 31 in Detroit, Mich., losing 31-26. The loss gives the Oilers a 4-5 record on the year with a 3-5 mark in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) play.
The Oilers turned the ball over three times in the first quarter, but Findlay's defense was able to hold the Warriors to only three points. Wayne State would then find the end zone twice in the second quarter to jump out to a 17-0 lead before sophomore quarterback Rhys Gervais hit senior running back Daiquone Ford on a 2-yard touchdown pass late in the opening half.
The third quarter began with a 29-yard field goal from junior kicker Tyler Bugeja, which made the score 17-10 in favor of Wayne State. Freshman running back Marcus Jones then plunged into the end zone from one yard away to tie the game at 17-17 with 9:20 to play in the third.
After rattling off 17 straight points, the Oilers were unable to convert a fourth down opportunity on their next possession. The failed attempt gave Wayne State good field position and led to a 37-yard scoring play by the Warriors to make the score 24-17 with 3:07 showing on the third quarter clock.
Bugeja would tack on another field goal for the Oilers, this one a 41-yard kick, with just under nine minutes remaining, but the Warriors would again find the end zone. The touchdown by Wayne State pushed the Warrior lead to 11 at 31-20 with 6:26 to play.
The Oilers would again trim the Warriors lead, this time via a 5-yard touchdown pass from Gervais to senior wide receiver Alex Long. They could not convert the two-point conversion attempt however, which made the score 31-26 with 3:46 left in the game. The Warriors then ran out the clock on the ensuing possession to secure the victory.
Gervais finished the game by completing 25-of-42 passing attempts for 217 yards and two scores. He also threw three interceptions in the game.
Freshman defensive back Chiebuka Chukwuneke led the defense with eight tackles and a sack while junior defensive back Anthony Linner made six stops to go along with a sack and a fumble recovery.
Romello Brown led the Warriors with 172 rushing yards and three touchdowns.
The Oilers will return home to host Malone University next Saturday, Nov. 7. The game is scheduled to begin at noon in Donnell Stadium.