September 12, 2010

Defense tough in loss

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While Kent State's offense and punt return units struggled in the Golden
Flashes 26-13 loss at Boston College on Saturday, the defense played with plenty
of intensity and kept the Flashes within striking distance.

The Golden Flashes turned the ball over five times, leading to 16 of Boston
College's 26 points. Without the short field the Eagles struggled to
move the football.

"We really played well defensively all day," said Kent State head
coach Doug Martin. "They were playing with a short field a lot
of the times, the two punt returns that we fumbled really hurt us. You just
can't give a team like Boston College those opportunities or it's
going to catch you."

Boston College led just 6-3 at the half but it was two fumbled punt returns
and an interception in the second half that prevented the Golden Flashes from
making a serious run at the upset.

Martin's game plan for his squad was to keep the game close entering
the fourth quarter. The defense made sure the Flashes followed that plan.

"I thought defensively we played well," said senior safety Brian Lainhart. "We had a couple short fields and held them to four field
goals. I was impressed defensively the way we played on sudden changes; we
came out playing well."

The Flashes held Boston College to just 305 total yards of offense and were
most impressive in the run game. They limited the Eagles to just 87 rushing
yards and standout running back Montel Harris carried 29 times for
just 80 yards.

They did that without starting defensive linemen Monte Simmons and
Zach Williams[/db] in the lineup and found ways to pressure Boston College
quarterbacks throughout the game.

"It's frustrating because we couldn't get going. They played
a great defense," said Boston College quarterback [db]Dave Shinskie. "They
moved around a lot. They blitzed us a lot. We watched tape of them last year
and they did what coach said they were going to do--blitz us and put pressure
on us. It was tough to get moving with the football."

But, in the end the Flashes' mistakes on special teams and inability
to run the football-they rushed for just four yards-cost them an
opportunity to start the season at 2-0.

The Flashes travel to Penn State next weekend and the defense will have to
continue to play well to give the Golden Flashes a chance of winning in Happy

"We've been a good defensive football team pretty consistently
throughout the years here. We've got to continue to do that," Martin
said. "We've got to continue to make teams one-dimensional. We
have to make people throw the ball. If you take the run game away you've
got a chance. That's what we did today for the most part."

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