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Ohio beats Wyoming 30-27 in overtime at Arizona Bowl

arizona bowl

TUCSON, Ariz. — CJ Harris hit Tyler Foster on a 10-yard touchdown pass in overtime, lifting Ohio to a 30-27 win over Wyoming in the Arizona Bowl on Friday.

The Cowboys (7-6) labored offensively after the teams combined for three touchdowns in the first quarter. Andrew Peasley sparked Wyoming’s offense, orchestrating a six-play, 75-yard drive capped by Jordan Vaughn’s 5-yard TD run with 2:08 left in regulation.

The Bobcats (10-4) had time to answer, and Nathanial Vakos kicked a tying 46-yard field goal with 4 seconds left.

Wyoming’s John Hoyland opened overtime with a 29-yard field goal, but Foster pulled down the winning catch over a defender in the back of the end zone.

Ohio had a hard time revving up its passing game against Wyoming’s defense, relying mostly on the ground instead.

Sieh Bangura ran for 138 yards and scored on a 3-yard run. Harris hit Jacoby Jones on a 34-yard score and finished with 184 yards on 20-of-33 passing in his third start since Mid-American Conference Offensive Player of the Year Kurtis Rourke went down with a season-ending knee injury.

The Arizona Bowl has produced some strange games through the years, and the 2022 version appeared as if it was going to follow suit.

Wyoming, which averages 127 yards passing per game, threw the ball on six of its first nine plays in an opening drive capped by Jordan Vaughn’s 17-yard touchdown run up the middle.

Ohio answered by picking apart Wyoming’s stingy defense, setting up Harris’ TD pass to Jones, who battled Wyoming’s Deron Harrell near the goal line.

Bobcats returner Sam Wiglusz then muffed a punt and Peasley hit Treyton Welch on a 17-yard touchdown pass the next play.

The wild ride smoothed out by the second quarter.

Wyoming all but stopped passing, Ohio struggled to complete passes and the teams traded field goals. Wyoming led 17-11 at halftime.

Ohio got into a brief offensive rhythm in the third quarter, taking an 18-17 lead. Bangura scored on a 3-yard option right after breaking off a 40-yarder midway through the third.

THE TAKEAWAY

Ohio won most of its games this season with an offense that averaged nearly 32 points per game. The Bobcats relied on their defense most of the day before their offense found its form late.

Wyoming labored offensively through most of the second half before Vaughn’s late touchdown. The Cowboys left Ohio with too much time and the defense, the Cowboys’ strength all season, couldn’t come through.

UP NEXT

Wyoming: One of the nation’s youngest teams will have much more experience next season.

Ohio State: The Bobcats hope to have Rourke back and healthy, but may have to replace several defensive players.