The Ball State Cardinals got a big win this past Saturday in a tough MAC Conference game against the Cincinnati Bearcats 27-14.
The win was definitely a confidence boost for a team that was on a three game losing streak with the most recent coming against Western Michigan. But it seemed that home field advantage played a big part of the win as well as a change-up to a normal practice routine.
“We cancelled practice and Monday and had a meeting to look at some film of one of the All Blacks games,” Ball State President Jay Sheets told RUGBYMag.com. “We took notes from their game and translated them to the pitch.”
Those notes raised the issues of playing with a lot of physicality and being able to make the tackles that need to be made to win games. It worked as three out of four scores came from the forward pack and the scoreboard favoring the Cardinals when the final whistle sounded.
The scoring started with wing Garrick Hall and eventually went through no. 8 Matt Young, prop Brandon Herber and finishing with flanker Chris Ballard. Getting credit for the conversions were opposite prop Andrew Krummen and wing Jordan Cox.
As mentioned, the defense played great as well, limiting a somewhat deadly offense to just 14 points over the course of 80 minutes. After the game, Jay Sheets said they took somewhat of a risk into their lineup, but wanted to keep a mentality of playing hard.
“We had a lot of new guys in our lineup that haven’t had a lot of playing time,” he mentioned. “But they caught on to our motto of playing hard-nosed today because the majority of the guys are football players who like to get physical.”
Ball State heals up for their bye week after the win to get ready for Miami (OH) for their last home game of the season. Cincinnati goes on the road against Central Michigan, who is coming off a win, then welcomes in Bowling Green for their last home match.