Tuesday, Apr 24, 2018
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Rockets crank up defensive intensity


Toledo's DaJuane Collins tries to elude Colorado's Cha'pelle Brown during the first quarter.

The Blade/Dave Zapotosky
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Six days after giving up 52 points and 315 rushing yards in a season-opening loss at Purdue, the University of Toledo showed plenty more resolve on defense last night in its home opener against Colorado.

The Rockets kept the Buffaloes off the scoreboard in the first quarter en route to leading 23-3 at halftime, despite Colorado owning an 18:50-11:10 advantage in time of possession.

Against the Boilermakers on Saturday, the Rockets found themselves down 31-14 at the half.

UT was also much more effective at controlling its opponent's rushing attack as the Buffaloes ran for 99 yards on 18 carries in the first half.

Colorado sophomore running back Darrell Scott, who was limited by injuries in the Buffs' 23-17 loss to rival Colorado State last week, rushed for 85 yards on 12 carries.

His 32-yard scamper in the second quarter set up Colorado's only score in the half - a 32-yard field goal from Aric Goodman 1:29 into the second quarter.

Colorado junior quarterback Cody Hawkins was held to 11-of-18 passing for 80 yards in the first half.

Hawkins was also sacked once by senior defensive tackle Derrick Summers, resulting in a fumble that was recovered by freshman safety Jermaine Robinson with 1:32 remaining in the half.

The Buffaloes didn't score their first touchdown until 7:26 remained in the third quarter on a four-yard pass from Hawkins to junior wide receiver Scotty McKnight to make it 30-10.

WILLIAMS AILING: UT senior wideout Stephen Williams was a late scratch from last night's starting lineup due to injury.

Senior Robin Bailey started in his place and had one catch for eight yards in the first half.

Williams entered the game on UT's second possession but left the field early in the second quarter grabbing his upper right leg after an incomplete pass from quarterback Aaron Opelt.

He returned later in the half but did not have any more passes thrown his way in the first half.

SCOUTING TALENT: Scouts from seven NFL teams were in attendance at the Glass Bowl last night.

Representatives from the Cleveland Browns, Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, San Francisco 49ers, Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers were on hand, likely evaluating Williams and safety Barry Church.

Colorado tight end Riar Geer and linebacker Jeff Smart are also considered NFL prospects.

BIG LEG: UT senior kicker Alex Steigerwald booted a career-long 50-yard field goal to put the Rockets ahead 16-3 with 9:59 left in the second quarter.

The kick from the middle of the field ranked as the eighth longest in school history.

Steigerwald later attempted another 50-yarder with 2:25 remaining in the half but pushed the kick wide left.

AFTER DARK: Last night's contest was the latest-ending game in Glass Bowl history.

The latest a UT home game had ended before last night was 12:06 a.m., a 37-31 double overtime win over Kansas in 2006.

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