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Owls fall to ULM in 35-14 loss

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Owls fall to ULM in 35-14 loss



Wilbert throws for a career-high 261 yards, defense limits Browning

For the first half, Florida Atlantic kept Kolton Browning in check.

The senior quarterback who leads the Sun Belt Conference in passing touchdowns and total offense was held to just 3-of-11 passing for 19 yards and a touchdown.

However, the lack of production didn’t last long as Browning and the Warhawks used an efficient second half to secure a 35-14 win over the Owls.

FAU traveled to Monroe knowing that containing Browning was essential to winning the game, and in the first half of play that was just the case.

ULM built an early lead off of a Browning 3-yard touchdown pass to Brent Leonard and added another score with a 36-yard touchdown run from Monterell Washington.

Despite the points, the Warhawks high powered offenses appeared to be somewhat contained.

The Owls defense was able to make multiple stops and force punts while Browning often had to throw the ball away.

While the defense was playing well, the offense and special teams struggled.

FAU was forced to punt on their first five possessions of the night, and on the sixth made a costly error.

Punter Sean Kelly fumbled a high snap while standing in his endzone and the Warhawks recovered the loose ball for a touchdown giving them a three-score lead.

The Owls’ offense looked primed to break out of their funk early in the second quarter when quarterback Graham Wilbert connected with wide receiver William Dukes for a 45-yard pitch and catch down into ULM territory.

Dukes (pictured) got behind the Warhawks defense, and snagged the ball away from two defenders to make the play.

The catch marked the Owls’ longest gain of the night, but wouldn’t result in points as two negative plays and a short run led to yet another punt.

Wilbert would again find Dukes later in the first half for a big completion, this time aiding a drive that would result in a score.

The Owls strung together a 13-play drive that was capped off by a 3-yard Jonathon Wallace touchdown run right before halftime.

The points cut the Warhawks lead to two scores and marked only the third first half touchdown for the Owls this season. FAU trailed by only two touchdowns at the break and had effectively limited Browning and ULM’s offense.

After the intermission however, the veteran signal caller would be awoken.

Browning threw his second touchdown strike of the night and Washington scampered for another touchdown run to give the home team a large advantage on the scoreboard early in the fourth quarter.

Wilbert and the Owls’ offense tried to battle back into the game and continued to throw the ball down the field, but ended up having to punt twice and turned the possession over on downs.

FAU was able to add another score late in the contest when Wilbert hit wide receiver Marcus Cunningham for a 15-yard touchdown pass, but the points came too late.

Wilbert finished the game 26-for-39 passing for a career-high 261 yards including the one score.

More importantly he was able to continue his development with Dukes – who had a team-high 96 yards receiving – and displayed a passing game that had been absent for most of the season.

Wallace, who had been battling injuries, led the team with 50 yards rushing and scored his first career touchdown. As a team, FAU ran for only 46 yards – their lowest total in 11 games.

Defensively, the Owls limited the Warhawks to just 341 yards of total offense and held Browning to just 10-of-23 passing for 147 yards and two touchdowns.

The loss marks the 13th straight for the Owls in Sun Belt Conference play and the fourth straight to the Warhawks.

Game Notes:

- Linebacker Adarius Glanton made one of the biggest defensive plays for the Owls on the night, dropping Browning behind the line early in the first half. The sack marked the defenders first of his career and only the team’s fifth of the season.

- While Dukes proved to be a playmaking threat for Wilbert, wide receiver Jason Stoshak had a big outing as well. The freshman recorded his first career catch, and finished the game with four grabs for 35 yards.

- FAU was penalized a season-high 11 times for 87 yards, with most of the flags coming during crucial moments of the game. On two separate occasions Owls’ defenders where called for pass interference helping ULM gain easy first downs.

- Travis Jones had three punt returns for 20 yards on the night. While the defense was forcing the Warhawks to punt often, the running back was able to gain some unusual yardage in the return game. FAU came into the contest with negative punt return yardage on the season and ranked dead last in the nation.

Twitter: @andrewrivins
Email: [email protected]
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Re: Owls fall to ULM in 35-14 loss

At the start of the year I thought our WRs were going to be bad. As a whole, they surprise me. Dukes, Stoshak , Mckinney, all of them showed good hands and the ability to pull the ball down in a crowd. They are doing a nice job. Our RBs are doing a nice job. Our QB is better than I thought. So what is the problem? I hate to point the finger, but the O line isn't winning enough of the snaps. IMHO they need to cop an attitude and go out there and try to knock someones head off. Get mean on the field.Beat the guy in front of you on every play. If you don't, the whole play breaks down. I don't see films, I'm only trying to figure it out. Defensively, I love the play of the small D tackle ( can't think of his name ). Every player should have his desire . Our D backs seem to be doing a good job. I think our LB's seem to never show up as a whole. Individually they have had good games. Each is very talented. But the LB's need to disrupt the game. They need to play hard on every play and make their assignments. I know they can't do this all of the time. But they need to the majority of the time. The long snapper has done a great job all year. First error. It happens. All of this can not be backed up by facts or stats, it's just my stupid opinion.
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Re: Owls fall to ULM in 35-14 loss

I was also very impressed with your WR's and your DB's.  Your WR's looked tall and fast, and did a good job overall of making the difficult catches (though I think a couple easy ones were dropped).  Your DB's kept our WR's contained all night long.  Oh, and my tickets ended up being right in front of your cheer leaders.  Whoever chooses their outfits needs a raise.  Good luck the rest of the season, guys!
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Re: Owls fall to ULM in 35-14 loss

aaron_c said

I was also very impressed with your WR's and your DB's.  Your WR's looked tall and fast, and did a good job overall of making the difficult catches (though I think a couple easy ones were dropped).  Your DB's kept our WR's contained all night long.  Oh, and my tickets ended up being right in front of your cheer leaders.  Whoever chooses their outfits needs a raise.  Good luck the rest of the season, guys!

Took care of the avatar issue for you…
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