Hilltoppers clinch bowl eligibility for seventh straight year

11/18/2017 02:34 AM

By Ryan Dearbone

Senior night is generally memorable on the Hill, but WKU and Middle Tennessee State University made the 2018 version unforgettable. After 3 low scoring quarters, in which neither team found its groove, both teams couldn’t stop scoring. WKU’s senior quarterback Mike White led the charge with 5 total touchdowns and 485 yards on 39-54 attempts. White spread the wealth as three Toppers (Lucky Jackson, Kyle Towner, and Nacarius Fant) had over 100 yards for the game.

MTSU had a more balanced attack as the Blue Raiders racked up 137 yards on the ground, led by junior Tavares Thomas and nearly 300 yards in the air. The pace picked up in the fourth quarter as MTSU exploded for 3 touchdowns and WKU added 2 to their total.

Overtime saw both squads match each other point for point until the third round. MTSU’s Canon Rooker missed a 42-yard field goal that would have given the Blue Raiders the win. WKU’s Ryan Nuss took advantage of his opportunity and hit his first game-winning field goal, a 37-yarder that sailed through the uprights. Coach Mike Sanford admitted in the postgame press conference Nuss had barely won the kicking job in the spring and was the last player picked during the spring game draft.

The Hilltoppers (6-5) clinched bowl eligibility for the 7th straight year, but will need a win next week against Florida International on the road to up their chances of locking in a bowl berth.

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