The Tulsa Golden Hurricane football team broke out of their .500 record and got back on the winning track, as they beat the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks 34–24.
Quarterback Dane Evans and running back Zach Langer both contributed to the offensive effort again, as both were responsible for two touchdowns each. Evans’s touchdowns were paired with 341 yards passing, while Langer had 69 yards of his own.
However, the scoring began with kicker Redford Jones, as he hit a 34-yard field goal. After Craig Ford missed a field goal, Langer scored the first of his two touchdowns, giving Tulsa a 10–0 lead after a quarter.
Early in the second quarter, Louisiana-Monroe finally got on the board. Quarterback Garrett Smith ran three yards for a touchdown, cutting the lead to a field goal. After a scare via a missed field goal by Jones, he redeemed himself by hitting a 28-yard field goal, bringing the lead back to six points. Tulsa ended the half with Evans’s longest pass completion of the year, as Joshua Hobbs scored on a 36-yard touchdown reception.
However, the Warhawks dominated the entire third quarter. After a 22-yard field goal by Ford, Smith completed a pass to Ajalen Holley for 26 yards for a touchdown, bringing the score to 20–17 Tulsa. Louisiana took their first lead of the game on a 43-yard rush by DeVontae McNeal, as they took a 24–20 lead. Tulsa’s only scoring attempts ended in a pair of field goal misses by Jones.
After the third quarter, the Louisiana scoring ended, and Tulsa finished the game strong. Evans completed a pass to D’Angelo Brewer for a 15-yard touchdown, and Langer ran for his second touchdown, bringing the game to the final score of 34–24.
Louisiana-Monroe was only held to 173 rushing yards, while compiling 231 yards passing. Meanwhile, Tulsa ran for 222 and passed 341 yards. The game featured a pair of 100-yard receivers, as Josh Atkinson and the Warhawks’ Ajalen Holley both had just over 110 yards each. This was Atkinson’s fourth straight 100-yard game.
After the game, Head Coach Philip Montgomery talked about two big plays by junior linebackers Matt Linscott and Matt Hickman that swung the game back in Tulsa’s favor.
“(The interception) was a changing point of the game. Those two plays were huge momentum swings for us.” The Golden Hurricane were able to take advantage of those turnovers to go up 34–24 late in the 4th quarter.
Coach Montgomery also had a few words concerning the new black uniforms that the team played in. “[The team] walked in the locker room and it was like a little kid on Christmas….I know our guys enjoyed playing in them, and they were excited about it. Recruits like it.”
The Warhawks were fighting in honor of quarterback Daniel Fitzwater, who died this past week. “The coaching staff and team are deeply saddened by the loss of a great person in Daniel,” said Louisiana-Monroe coach Todd Berry. “The team’s hurting, everyone’s hurting…We were all heartbroken.”
Louisiana-Monroe goes back home to play Appalachian State next week, while Tulsa goes on the road to take on East Carolina Pirates.