By BRIAN RAMSEY | OBU Sports Network
ARKADELPHIA – The fifth-ranked Ouachita Baptist University football team moved to 6-0 on the season with a 63-24 homecoming victory over Southwestern Oklahoma State University on Saturday afternoon at Cliff Harris Stadium.
The two squads traded scores in the first quarter to give Ouachita a 14-10 lead heading into the second frame. The Tigers (6-0) exploded for 28 second-quarter points, while keeping SWOSU (3-3) to just seven to hold a 42-17 lead at the halftime break.
Ouachita again hit the 20-point mark in the third quarter, scoring three times and keeping SWOSU to just one score to give the Tigers their final 63-24 advantage. Neither team scored in the final 15 minutes.
- The Tigers amassed 709 yards of total offense in the win, unofficially setting a new school record for a single game. It is definitely a new school record for the NCAA era. The bulk of the offensive production came on the ground with 481 rushing yards. Overall, the team averaged 10.1 yards per play.
- Ouachita, the nation’s best pass efficiency unit coming into Saturday’s game, put together a near-perfect performance against SWOSU. Combined between starting quarterback Riley Harms and backups Eli Livingston and Grant Allen, Ouachita was 16-for-17 through the air for 228 yards and three touchdowns. The only incompletion was a pass from Harms to Tucker Swoboda caught just out of bounds on the Ouachita sideline.
- The Tigers led the Great American Conference and ranked fifth in the nation in scoring prior to Saturday’s game, and that national rank should be higher next week with the second 63-point outing of the season and fifth game of the year with at least 40.
- Senior running back TJ Cole needed just seven rushing yards to become the sixth Ouachita player to rush for at least 3,000 career yards. Cole hit that mark and more, turning in his 14th career 100-yard rushing performance with 14 carries for 129 yards and three touchdowns. He now has 3,122 career rushing yards.
- Six different Tigers found the endzone at least once in the game, led by Cole with three rushing touchdowns.
- Kendel Givens also turned in a 100-yard game on the ground with eight carries for 118 yards, including a 77-yard touchdown run, the longest play from scrimmage this season for Ouachita.
- In addition to Harms’ 197 passing yards and two touchdown passes, he also had a 72-yard touchdown run.
- Gabe Goodman remains perfect on the season in extra points, going 9-for-9 against SWOSU, moving him to 39-for-39 overall this season.
- Ouachita did not have to punt during the win. The Tigers had 13 offensive drives in the game. The first six ended in touchdowns. Up big late in the game, the Tigers turned the ball over on downs twice. Ouachita ended both halves with kneel downs.
- Linebacker Jax Miller hit double-digits in tackles for the second time this season, coming up with 10 stops. Ty Compton finished with eight.
- Ouachita had two sacks and five tackles for loss in the win. The two sacks were by Compton and Mikey Gonzalez.
- The Tiger defense recorded interceptions number six and seven of the 2022 season in the win. Pierce Smalley had a pick-six taken off the board due to a penalty, though Ouachita maintained possession. Jason Jackson recorded the other interception, both off of deflected passes.
- Ouachita moves to 8-1 in the annual Paul Sharp Cup, honoring the late Ouachita graduate and SWOSU coach, who led the Bulldogs to the 1996 NAIA national championship. Overall against SWOSU, the Tigers are now 14-4 with six consecutive victories in the series.
- Ouachita earned its 10th homecoming win in the last 12 years.
- The Tigers are 6-0 for the 10th time in program history, the last coming in back-to-back undefeated regular seasons in 2018 and 2019.
The Tigers are back at home next Saturday, October 15 to host Arkansas-Monticello. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.