Buffalo Comes Back and Defeats Army in Overtime

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PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 02: Ahmad Bradshaw #17 of the Army Black Knights runs the balls against the Temple Owls in the first quarter at Lincoln Financial Field on September 2, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

(Buffalo, NY) The Army West Point Black Knights have plenty of reasons to be excited about coming into Saturday night’s game. The excitement goes back to last week, where they traveled to El Paso, TX to face UTEP in the Sun Bowl. The game comes less than a week after the death of Brandon Jacobson, Army’s starting CB, who was killed in a car crash near West Point’s campus. It was never a doubt, as Army discarded UTEP 66-14. The game was lopsided in every sense of the word as Army gained 600 total yards to UTEP’s 254 yards. Player of the game would have to be Darnell Woolfork. He rushed 15 times for 75 yards and banged in three touchdowns. Army fullback Andy Davidson also had himself a game, as he rushed 17 times for 106 yards and one touchdown. Army became 3-0 for the first time since 1996, and it did not look like they would slow down. Another fun fact, 1996 is also the last time that all three service academies (Army, Navy, Air Force) started 3-0 in the same year.

Tale of the Tape

Army, riding high after their beat down on UTEP, traveled to Buffalo, NY to face the Buffalo Bulls. Buffalo has not had a great start to their season, as they have lost both of their first two games to Albany and Nevada. The Bulls were also 14-point underdogs according to Las Vegas odds. They knew that even at home, this was a new Army team and one that is always a threat to score.

Exploding Ahead

After winning the toss, Army kicked off to Buffalo. On the play, Army’s place kicker Mitchell Howard suffered a leg injury which put him out of the game. Backup kicker Blake Wilson stepped in and took over place kicking duties. Buffalo promptly went three and out and punted the ball to Army. Army subsequently traveled 71 yards on nine plays, where Jordan Asberry rushed in a 15 yard run for an Army touchdown only five minutes into the game. In the second quarter, Blake Wilson knocked in a 20-yd field goal to extend Army’s lead to 10-0.

The Comeback

Army received the second half kickoff. In the first drive, a bad Ahmad Bradshaw pitch on fourth down gave Buffalo the ball deep into Army’s territory. Buffalo took advantage of the opportunity and scored on a one yard quarterback sneak from Tyree Jackson. Buffalo kicker Adam Mitcheson missed the PAT, and the game would become 10-6. Later in the third, Blake Wilson knocked in a 38-yard field goal to make it 13-6. On their next drive, Army went 62 yards in 11 plays which ended in a five yard TD run for QB Ahmad Bradshaw to extend Army’s lead to 20-6. Coming into tonight, Army has shut out opponents in the fourth quarter allowing zero points in three games. Tonight is when things changed. Halfway through the fourth, Kamathi Holsey hauled in a five yard TD pass from Jackson to cut the game to 20-13. With two minutes left to play, Tyree Jackson had another one yard QB sneak to tie the game 20-20. With eight seconds left to play, Blake Wilson from Army stepped up to kick a game winning field from within 30 yards. He hooked it left and sent the game to overtime. Army got the ball first to begin overtime. After a chop block penalty, Blake Wilson stepped out for Army to salvage some points for Army and to force Buffalo to at least kick a field goal themselves. It was a 43-yard field goal, and he kicked it wide right. Buffalo subsequently marched down and kicker Adam Mitcheson kicked a 33-yard field goal to give Buffalo the win.

Army has off next week, then will travel down to Duke who defeated Notre Dame on Saturday.

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