Saturday's state college football: Huge rally lifts Central Michigan over Ball State 45-44

Detroit News staff and wires
Central Michigan quarterback Quinten Dormady

Muncie, Ind. — Jonathan Ward rushed for 105 yards and four touchdowns, Tommy Lazaro ran for two fourth-quarter touchdowns, the second coming from the 2-yard line with 61 seconds left in the game, and Central Michigan overcame a big deficit and beat Ball State 45-44 on Saturday.

The Chippewas (7-4, 5-2 Mid-American Conference) trailed 27-11 at halftime and 41-31 heading into the final quarter. Central Michigan led 3-0 early and then didn’t lead again until its final drive.

Ward ran for his first TD in the second quarter from 1 yard out and then added scoring runs of 6, 9 and 1 yard in the third quarter to get the Chippewas within 10 points.

Quinten Dormady completed 27 of 38 passes for 356 yards and one interception for the Chippewas. Tyrone Scott had four catches for 95 yards.

Drew Plitt finished 14-of-25 passing for 268 yards with three TDs and a pick for the Cardinals (4-6, 3-3). Justin Hall had four catches for 95 yards and two scores. Riley Miller caught the other scoring pass for Ball State. Walter Fletcher led the Cardinals’ ground attack with 115 yards on 15 carries. Huntley added 106 yards rushing with a TD on 24 totes.


Wayne State 31, (at) Grand Valley State 19: Darece Roberson had two touchdowns, including a 96-yard kickoff return, as Wayne State (8-3, 7-1) won its fifth straight at the expense of 19th-ranked Grand Valley State. James Hill opened the scoring for the Warriors on a 1-yard run with 10:04 left in the first quarter. Nicholas Deion added a 6-yard run with 8:54 left in the game to seal the win.

Aryuan Cain-Veasey rushed for 134 yards on 22 carries, including a score, for the Lakers (8-3, 5-3).

(At) Ashland 31, Northern Michigan 10: Jeffrey Barnett scored on runs of 3, 4 and 2 yards as Ashland (7-4) rolled off 17 unanswered points in the second half. Keshawn Howard had a 34-yard touchdown for Northern (1-9).

(At) Michigan Tech 34, Northwood 21: Will Ark passed for 317 yards, connecting with Jacob Wenzlick on scoring strikes of 73 and 12 yards as the Huskies (5-5) ended a three-game skid. Tajae Leslie had two catches and a TD for Northwood (1-10).

Davenport 33, (at) Saginaw Valley State 23: Nate Couturier's 43-yard TD punt return highlighted a 17-point fourth quarter for Davenport (5-5), which also saw Deion Powers bring back a missed extra point 98 yards in the second quarter. Ryan Conklin passed for 334 yards and a score but was intercepted twice for Saginaw Valley (5-6).


(At) Alma 46, Finlandia 0: Joseph Schaefer had four catches for 48 yards and scores as Alma (6-4, 4-3) racked up 410 yards in offense while holding Finlandia to 100. Finlandia finishes 0-10.

Albion 30, (at) Olivet 21: Kyle Thomas scored on a 49-yard run and caught a 36-yard pass for another TD as Albion (8-2, 5-2) won its fifth straight. Kaleb Jarrett had two rushing TDs for Olivet (8-2, 5-2).

(At) Hope 42, Adrian 7: Kenyea Houston rushed for 194 yards on 23 carries while Connor Mellon scored on runs of 4 and 14 yards to lead Hope (9-1, 7-0), which finished the season undefeated in conference play. Henry Wilson scored on a 20-yard pass from Jack Wurzer for Adrian (5-5, 4-3).

(At) Trine 29, Kalamazoo 3: Dylan Dowling scored on runs of 1 and 6 yards in the second half to cement the win for Trine (5-5, 2-5), which built a 17-3 halftime lead. Greg Kearns had a 37-yard field goal for Kalamazoo (2-8, 1-6).