SHAWNEE - After two straight weeks away from home, the Oklahoma Baptist football team finally returns to Crain Family Stadium at the Hurt Complex for a Saturday night match-up against East Central at 6 PM under the lights. The game will be featured on OBUBison.com with the trio of Todd Miller, John Brooks, and Scott Wanish.
OBU is coming off a thrilling first victory of the 2019 season as Preston Haire connected with Shae Garner on a 27-yard score with 50 seconds remaining to give the Bison a 34-31 win over Southeastern in Durant.
ALL OF THE LIGHTS
After an electric crowd in OBU's first ever night game on September 7 against Henderson State, the Bison will finally return home to play their second home game of the year and second consecutive night game, this time welcoming in the Tigers of East Central. A record crowd is expected to be on hand for the occasion as OBU will try to make it two wins in a row.
SAME OL' SITUATION
It seemed like déjà vu for the Bison last weekend as they found themselves behind by two scores on the road. And similarly to last week, OBU scored with five minutes remaining, got a huge fourth down stop, and got the go-ahead touchdown with a minute to play. The difference? The defense stepped it up and closed the game out as they forced Southeastern into a turnover on downs to seal the incredible win.
In the last four meetings between Oklahoma Baptist and East Central, the away team has been the victorious team as OBU has taken the last two in Ada, including a 27-26 overtime win to open the 2018 season, while East Central has won the last two in Shawnee in convincing fashion including a 55-34 win over the Bison in 2017.
PRAY YOU CATCH ME
With 12 receptions for 126 yards in the win over Southeastern Oklahoma State, sophomore Josh Cornell matched a school record with 12 receptions in a contest, tying Cagney Robinson from the Southeastern game a year ago and Nyko Symonds from the 2014 season. Cornell is currently fifth in the country with 8.3 receptions per game and 16th in the nation in receiving yards with 319.
A NEW WAVE
Quarterback Preston Haire set new career milestones in the win over Southeastern Oklahoma State, becoming the first quarterback in school history to throw for over 6,000 yards to go with his 50 touchdowns. Haire has been one of the top quarterbacks in the conference as well as the nation.
Currently, Haire is second in the country in completions per game with 27.67 while sitting 11th in the nation in points responsible for with 56. He is 12th in the nation with eight passing touchdowns and 17th in the country in passing yards with 794. He has had multi touchdown pass games in every contest in 2019 and has now thrown at least two touchdown passes in seven straight contests.
TAKE WHAT YOU WANT
A season ago, the OBU defense only had four interceptions total in 2018. Though three games already, the OBU defense has three interceptions and has forced five turnovers in three contests, a big improvement from a season ago. OBU came away with three turnovers last Saturday including interceptions from Felipe Alvear and Lane Martin. Ruben Thompson also forced and recovered a fumble on the opening kickoff of the game.
Along with only one turnover from the offense thus far this season, OBU shows a positive turnover margin of +4, good for 22nd in the country thus far.
BORN TO RUN
Hayden Ashley has been excellent so far in his punting duties, averaging 41.28 yards per punt on 18 punts including 10 inside the 20 yards line and three 50+ yard punts
But Ashley has made his impact in two straight games with his legs, finding openings in back-to-back games to pick up first downs for OBU in punting situations.
Ashley has two rushes on the season for 25 yards including a long of 16 yards from Saturday's game. He is averaging 12.5 yards per game.
In the win over Southeastern Oklahoma State, OBU was able to get a lot of pressure on the Savage Storm backfield especially when it came to big Robert Lolofie in the middle. Lolofie finished with two sacks in the contest, a new career high for the sophomore from Midwest City.
OOPS! I DID IT AGAIN
For the second consecutive game, a wide receiver caught two touchdown passes for OBU and Noah McGraw hauled in a pair in the win. McGraw caught his first one on a fade patten in the second quarter and then the Bison returned to it again in the fourth during the comeback as he hauled in his second catch on a fade. McGraw currently sits at 921 career receiving yards and can surpass 1,000 with 79 more yards.
LAST TIME OUT
For the second straight week, the Oklahoma Baptist football team put together a huge fourth quarter comeback in the final five minutes on Saturday evening.
This time, they finished it off.
Preston Haire connected with Shae Garner for a 27-yard score with 50 seconds to play and the OBU defense forced a turnover on downs to give the Bison a thrilling 34-31 win over Southeastern Oklahoma State at Paul Laird Field.
Oklahoma Baptist fell behind 14-0 after a tough first quarter, but got back into it thanks in part to a Felipe Alvear interception as they made it a 14-14 contest in the second, eventually trailing 17-14 going into half. After OBU opened the half with a touchdown to take their first lead of the game at 20-17, Southeastern scored the next 14 points to lead 31-20 going into the fourth. It was another terrific come-from-behind finish as OBU scored 14 points in the final five minutes to secure the win.
The Bison and Savage Storm were nearly even in yards with OBU finishing with 414 total yards including 247 through the air. Southeastern had 419 total yards including 348 through the air. The Bison defense came away with three turnovers on the night.
It is the seventh consecutive win for Oklahoma Baptist over a GAC in-state team dating back to 2017.