Nov. 16, 2013
HOUSTON - Louisiana Tech struggled to stop a Rice running game that accumulated 415 yards and six touchdowns as the Bulldogs fell to the Owls, 52-14, Saturday night at Rice Stadium in Houston.
Ross posted 215 rushing yards and five touchdowns in the dominating performance that Louisiana Tech (4-6, 3-3 Conference USA) struggled to stop.
Sterling Griffin recorded 80 yards receiving on two catches - including a career-long 74-yard touchdown reception from Ryan Higgins in the third quarter - to lead LA Tech's offense. Higgins was 9-for-15 for 138 yards with a touchdown. Scotty Young, who played the majority of the first half, was 6-for-15 for 43 yards and an interception.
Thomas McDonald led the Bulldog defense with 10 total tackles and two pass break-ups.
Rice drove down on its first drive as Taylor McHargue connected with Dennis Parks on a 41-yard touchdown pass to give the Owls a 7-0 lead.
LA Tech was in position to even the score after a 26-yard run by Paul Harris put the Bulldogs at the five-yard line, but the quarterback fumbled on the ensuing play giving the ball back to Rice.
The Owls capitalized on the turnover, upping the lead to 14-0 on a Charles Ross 2-yard run for a touchdown. That capped off a wild series where, earlier in the drive on a single play, McHargue fumbled with Daniel Cobb recovering before he fumbled on the return and Rice regained possession.
Early in the second quarter the Owls had a chance to score another touchdown but Thomas McDonald made a crushing hit at the one-yard line to break up a pass and save the touchdown. However, Chris Boswell would connect on a 30-yard field goal to give Rice the 17-0 lead.
Ross was unstoppable again with 1:54 remaining in the half as McHargue pitched him the ball and he ran it into the end zone for a five-yard score to extend the Owl lead to 24-0. He would add another touchdown at the 7:45 mark in the third quarter on a two-yard run as Rice upped its lead to 31-0.
Rice would answer with a 17-play, 93-yard drive lasting 6:32 that would be capped off by a Ross 1-yard touchdown run giving the Owls the 38-7 advantage with 14:55 remaining in the game.
Ross would notch his fifth touchdown of the night with a 19-yard run just three minutes later upping the Owl lead to 45-7.
Luke Turner would add the final Rice score with 3:59 remaining on a 1-yard run.
Marlon Seets would score the final touchdown for the Bulldogs with a 9-yard run with under two minutes to go.
Louisiana Tech hosts Tulsa next Saturday, Nov. 23 at 6 p.m. at Joe Aillet Stadium.
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