BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — University at Buffalo’s football team rallied for a 13-10 overtime victory at Akron on Saturday, beginning the Mid-American Conference schedule with the first victory of the season for UB.
Alex McNulty kicked a 42-yard field goal and Devin Grant blocked a tying attempt for the Bulls (1-4) in the first overtime period. McNulty, who earlier this season became UB’s all-time scoring leader, tied the game with a 43-yard field goal in the third quarter.
UB’s defense rose to the occasion after struggling during the winless non-conference season. The Bulls allowed 253 yards and shutout the Zips in the second half. During the program’s first 0-4 start in 18 years, the Bulls allowed an average of 43.5 points and 512 yards, ranked third from the bottom in NCAA Division I FBS.
Cole Snyder (Southwestern) was 19 of 34 passing for 142 yards, with a 9-yard touchdown pass to Boobie Curry in the second quarter. It was Curry’s first scoring play in 13 games with UB since transferring from Arizona. Ron Cook compiled 88 yards (62 rushing, 26 receiving), and Chance Morrow led the Bulls receivers with 45 yards on two receptions. The offensive output (254 yards) was UB’s lowest of the season.
Grant, a starting safety, led the defense with 11 tackles, to go along with his blocked field goal. Joe Andreesseen (Lancaster) made nine tackles and Red Murdock had two sacks, as the Bulls played without leading tackler Shaun Dolac (West Seneca East) due to an ankle injury. Murdock’s second sack came in overtime, before Akron (1-4) tried for a tying field goal from 47 yards out. Max Michel had a sack with a fumble forced and recovered in the fourth quarter.
UB returns home to play Central Michigan next Saturday.
It was the second straight overtime loss for Akron, which fell in quadruple overtime last week to Indiana. The Zips missed a 32-yard field goal that would have knocked off the Hoosiers on the final play of regulation.
Owen Wiley, the third kicker used by Akron this year, made his first career field goal with 22 seconds left in the second quarter for a 10-7 lead. Akron quarterback DJ Irons had 155 total yards in the first half. Irons was 12 of 15 for 83 yards and a touchdown, and he carried it 10 times for 72 yards. But Irons was hurt in the second half and did not return.
Jonah Bronstein joined the WIVB squad in 2022 as a digital sports reporter. The Buffalonian has covered the Bills, Sabres, Bandits, Bisons, colleges, high schools and other notable sporting events in Western New York since 2005, for publications including The Associated Press, The Buffalo News, and Niagara Gazette. Read more of his work here.
The Associated Press contributed reporting.