(Saturday, October 24th)
Final Score: Western Michigan 34, Buffalo 31 (OT)
Kalamazoo, MI (Sports Network) - A 28-yard field goal by John Potter in overtime proved to be the difference as the Western Michigan Broncos captured a 34-31 victory over the Buffalo Bulls in Mid-American Conference play at Waldo Stadium.
WMU (4-4, 3-2 MAC), which has won twice in the last three outings, was paced by Tim Hiller who converted 34-of-55 passes for 350 yards and two touchdowns, while running back Brandon West accounted for a team-best 133 yards and two scores on 27 carries.
The Bulls (3-5, 1-3) followed the lead set by running back Ike Nduka who produced a game-high 172 yards and scored three times on just 18 rushing attempts. Zach Maynard chipped in with 26-of-51 passes for 327 yards and a TD, but he was sacked once and intercepted twice on the afternoon.
Hiller and the Broncos began the day's scoring as he hit Ansel Ponder with a 10-yard scoring pass on the first offensive drive of the game.
Barely three minutes later Buffalo locked the score at 7-7 when Nduka hit the end zone on an 11-yard run.
Western Michigan put together back-to-back scores as Ponder reeled in a nine- yard TD pass from Hiller late in the first frame and Potter knocked through a 28-yard field goal, accounting for the only points of the second quarter as the home team carried a 17-7 advantage into the break.
In the third period Nduka's two-yard TD run drew the visitors back to within a field goal, but again the Broncos responded, this time with a two-yard touchdown run by West.
Maynard finally put one of his passes into the end zone for the Bulls, combining with Brett Hamlin on a 33-yard connection that made the score 24-21 in favor of the Broncos heading into the final frame.
Capping a five-play, 90-yard drive, Nduka hit the end zone on a 56-yard scamper late in the fourth, pushing Buffalo ahead at 28-24.
With under two minutes remaining in regulation, West provided WMU with a three-yard TD run, but then Buffalo kicker A.J. Principe converted a 28-yard field goal as time expired to push the game into overtime tied at 31-31, setting the stage for the game-winning kick by Ponder from the same distance.
The Bulls rolled up 541 yards of total offense on the day, compared to 505 yards for a Western Michigan squad that posted nine more offensive plays.
10/24 18:39:20 ET