Tigers improve to 5-0

By BRIAN RAMSEY | OBU Sports Network

ALVA, Oklahoma — The sixth-ranked Ouachita Baptist University football team improved to 5-0 for the 13th time in program history with a 48-7 road win over Northwestern Oklahoma State on Saturday afternoon.

The Tigers (5-0) had the advantage in nearly every team category, highlighted by dominating wins in first downs (33-15) and rushing yards (353-158). Ouachita also took advantage of 10 NWOSU penalties that set the Rangers back 95 yards.

The game started with a long drive by the Rangers (0-5) ending with a fumble at the Ouachita five-yard line, recovered by the Tigers at the one-yard line. Ouachita responded with an eight-play drive, highlighted by a 46-yard touchdown pass from Riley Harms to Justin Dean.

NWOSU kept Ouachita off the scoreboard for the rest of the opening quarter, but the Tigers used 21 second-half points to take a big lead. Three different Tigers found the endzone in the second quarter. TJ Cole had a 24-yard touchdown run, Kendel Givens had a 24-yard touchdown run, and Connor Flannigan caught a 12-yard touchdown pass from Harms to put Ouachita up 28-0 at halftime.

The fifth different Tiger to score found the endzone late in the third quarter when Xaylon Falls capped a nine-play, 68-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown run.

NWOSU avoided the shutout with its only score of the game on the ensuing drive in less than two minutes.

Ouachita closed out the game with three unanswered scores in the fourth quarter, highlighted by a 55-yard field goal by Gabe Goodman, which set a new school record for longest field goal, with his previous long of 53 leading to a win over Henderson State in the 2021 Battle of the Ravine. The Arkadelphia native added another field goal later, this time from 27 yards out to put Ouachita up by its final margin. His 55-yarder was the second longest field goal in Great American Conference history.

Isaac Edwards started the fourth-quarter scoring with his third rushing touchdown of the season to represent the sixth Tiger of the game to find the endzone.

The Ouachita defense has now held its opponents to two scores or less in four consecutive games. Ty Compton led the Tigers with six tackles. Josiah Johnson had five.

Overall offensively, Ouachita outgained NWOSU 530-306. Quarterback Riley Harms finished 15-for-18 passing with 177 yards and two touchdowns. TJ Cole finished with 15 carries for 113 yards and one touchdown. Kendel Givens had 13 carries for 94 yards and one touchdown. Tucker Swoboda led the receivers with six receptions for 61 yards.

Ouachita is back at home for its next two games with Homecoming set for next Saturday, October 8. The Tigers host the Bulldogs of Southwestern Oklahoma State. Kickoff is set for noon at Cliff Harris Stadium.

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