The Dayton Flyers won their second consecutive MAC Conference game this weekend with a 27-19 edge of the Ohio Bobcats.
It was a back-and-forth battle until the very end.
Dayton was the first to draw blood in this matchup with wing Jake Houk then Ohio’s Chris Schade, who has continually been a scoring machine for the Bobcats, got his team’s first points and a conversion from fullback Pat Van Horn for a 7-5 lead.
Dayton responded late in the half with a score from scrumhalf Joe Bracken, his first of two on the day, to take a 10-7 score into the halfway break and feeling confident going into the second half. It turned out to be true as the Flyers came out of the gates fired up.
Two unanswered scores and conversions made the score 24-7 in favor of Dayton by Bracken and and outside center Peter Witchger with fullback Ben Yost converting both, however the defense suffered a bit of a hiccup late to make things interesting. The Ohio Bobcats got late tries from center Dave Powers and flyhalf Shane McNea with one conversion by Van Horn to make the score 24-19 going into the last five minutes of the game.
Dayton’s defense stiffened up after that to keep the reeling Bobcats off the scoreboard and added a penalty kick by Yost late for a final score of 27-19.
"For most of the game, we did a good job at competing at the ruck, tackling the ball with the first tackler and holding our own in the scrums," Dayton coach Ryan Moeller said. "We need to improve on playing to how the referee is calling the match and learning each other's tendencies on the field. It was a confidence boost to get a win against a quality opponent and something to build on against Central Michigan."
“We had too many penalties and Dayton capitalized on the lack of discipline,” Ohio coach William Griffes said. “Too many inconsistent periods of being competitive and playing together and then just going through the motions and not playing to our potential. We need to play together from the opening kickoff to the final whistle to win more.”
Dayton will keep the momentum going next weekend with a home game against Central Michigan. Ohio will regroup and face in-state rival Miami (OH) next weekend before getting their only bye week of the season.