Temple Owls Hold Off UMASS Minutemen, Win 29-21
Logan Marchi threw for 248 yards and three touchdown passes, and Isaiah Wright made a one-handed, 13-yard touchdown grab to lead the Temple Owls past the visiting UMASS Minutemen 29-21 in a closely contested game at Lincoln Financial Field on Friday, September 15. With the win, the Owls record improved to 2-1. The winless Minutemen fell to 0-4 with the loss.
Temple got on the scoreboard first on a 24-yard field goal by Austin Jones to take an early 3-0 lead. Later in the first quarter, the Minutemen failed to take advantage of an opportunity to tie the game when Michael Scheiner missed a 23-yard field goal. UMASS took the lead in the second quarter when QB Andrew Ford connected with Nick Oreyka for a 10-yard touchdown pass with 2:29 to go in the first half. The Owls swiftly regained the lead as Marchi passed to Adonis Jennings for a 30-yard touchdown with 1:04 left on the clock before intermission. On UMASS’s next possession, Temple’s Quincy Roche sacked Ford and recovered the ensuing fumble deep in Minutemen territory. With time running out, in the half, Marchi passed to Keith Kirkwood for an 11-yard score. Jones missed the extra point try, leaving the Owls up by a score of 16-7 as the first half expired.
In the 3rd quarter, Temple boosted its lead to 19-7 when Aaron Boumerhi, the hero of last week’s victory over Villanova, kicked a career-long 52-yard field goal. UMASS rallied to score on a Ford to Jesse Britt 20-yard pass to close the gap to 19-14 with 5:56 showing on the clock. Temple bounced back to score on a Jones field goal from 37-yards to leave the Owls on top by a score of 22-14 as the third quarter ended.
With under four minutes remaining in the game, Marchi connected with Isaiah Wright on a 13-yard pass to give the Owls a 29-14 margin. The Minutemen struck back when Ford ran it in for a 3-yard touchdown with 1:41 remaining in the game to make it a one-possession game, 29-21. UMASS had one last opportunity to tie the game when it forced the Owls to punt with 0:37 on the clock. But the Owls held and came away with a hard-earned victory over a determined Minutemen team.
Marchi, who completed 22-37 passes, paced the Owls to victory with his three touchdown tosses. Wright and Kirkwood each caught 4 passes, including one for a touchdown. Ryquell Armstead was Temple’s leading ground gainer running for 91-yards on 17 carries. The Owls recorded 9 sacks, including three by Roche who also forced and recovered a fumble.
UMASS’s stat leader was Ford who completed 23-37 passes for 377-yards and two touchdowns. Ford also ran for a touchdown. Marquis Young was the Minutemen’s top rusher with 77-yards on 15 carries. Sadiq Palmer was UMASS’s leading receiver with 7 catches for 117-yards. UMASS outgained Temple 458 total yards to 387 total yards. In the end, however, three missed field goals by the Minutemen was too much to overcome.
Next up for the Owls is a conference matchup on the road with 22nd ranked South Florida on Thursday night, September 21. UMASS will travel to Tennessee to play the ranked Volunteers next Saturday, September 23.