Buffalo State and The College of New Jersey will kicking off in about 20 minute at Coyer Field. The Bengals, at 1-5, are looking for their first home win of the season while TCNJ is 2-4 and coming off a 30-6 win at Morrisville.
While the Lions have won the last three meetings between the two schools, the Bengals have played better as of late. They set numerous school records two weeks ago in a 71-3 win at Western Connecticut State and played well in a 35-20 loss at Montclair State -- the undefeated leader of the New Jersey Athletic Conference.
Check back for updates throughout the game.
Pregame: Today marks the beginning of inauguration week at Buffalo State as the eighth president of the college, Dr. Aaron Podolefsky, will be officially installed this week. To celebrate, admission to today's game is free.
9:56 TCNJ drove 63 yards but a stance by the Bengals defense inside the 10 held the Lions to a field goal. Tyler Olsson hit a 22-yarder for a 3-0 lead. Buffalo State's run defense needs to get bette quickly -- Joe Flaco ran for 55 yards in that opening drive.
6:40 The Lions turned an interception into points when James Donoghue hit a wide open William Friedrich for a 49-yard TD pass play. With the extra point, TCNJ jumps out to a 10-0 lead.
4:35 And the Bengals strike back. With a short field thanks to a penalty on the kickoff, Buffalo State drove 50 yards, capping the drive with a 10-yard TD pass from Ryan Lehotsky to Rob Smith. Key play in the drive: a 24-yard pass play between Lehotsky and Jarrett Smith to put the Bengals on the 10. A successful two-point conversion makes the score 10-8.
End of the first quarter: TCNJ leads, 10-8. Buffalo State is driving and will start the second with a first down on the Lions' 25-yard line. The Bengals passing game is starting to connect.
13:14 A 2-yard touchdown run by Greg Spears and a point-after kick by Nick Debbins gives the Bengals a 15-10 lead. Lehotsky has 89 yards passing already, completing 8 of his 11 passes while Spears has 33 yards on the ground.
4:34 TCNJ drove down the field with ease -- until they got to the red zone. Buffalo State again held the Lions to a field goal with Olsson hitting a 26-yarder to cut the Bengals lead to 15-13.
3:38 A miscue on the kickoff by the Bengals gave them the ball at the TCNJ 2-yard line. With three downs of no gain, Buffalo State had to punt giving the Lions the ball on the Bengals 25-yard line.
0:31 And the original fielding error comes back to haunt the Bengals. Quarterback James Donoghue rushed 10 yards for a TD. The point after gives the Lions a 20-15 lead.
Halftime TCNJ leads, 20-15. Enter the red zone, come away with points. The Lions are 3-for-3 in the red zone while the Bengals are 2-2. TCNJ has a huge advantage in time of possession -- 19:38 to 10:22 -- keeping the Buffalo State defense on the field.
To get the win, Buffalo State needs to limit mental mistakes which have given the Lions short fields to work with.
11:20 Cue the rain at Coyer Field. Bengals driving. This may affect their passing game.
4:58 Another miscue on a kick and more points for TCNJ. The Lions were punting and Jarrett Smith was back deep to receive. He muffled the catch and the ball rolled backward into the endzone. Patrick Chirchirillo recovered the ball in the endzone for a TD. With the extra point, TCNJ extends its lead to 27-15.
14:52 An interception of Lehotsky by Gregory Burns on the first play of the quarter gives TCNJ the ball on Buffalo State's 18-yard line.
13:48 Three plays laster the Lions score on a 5-yard run by Falco. The lead grows to 34-15.
13:37 This time, the big play off the kick off went to Buffalo State. Mike Doherty returned the kickoff 85-yards for a TD. The point after kick was good and the Bengals stay in the game, trailing 34-22.
10:24 TCNJ responds. A 44-yard run by Falco and the PAT makes it 41-22.
9:20 Things continue to go south for the Bengals -- another interception thrown by Lehotsky.
1:16 Falco fumbles on 3rd-and-goal, but recovers his own drop in the end zone. Another score for the Lions, up 48-22. And so continues the dismal fourth quarter for the Bengals.
0:14 Bengals add a final score for good measure -- a run by Spears. The PAT is good for a 48-29 score.
Final: TCNJ 48, Buffalo State 29
It was another case of Buffalo State beating itself. The Bengals had too many miscues, particularly on kickoffs, which gave The College of New Jersey plenty of opportunities. Credit the Lions for taking advantage of them. The Bengals did good things but again lacked consistency and focus.
Buffalo State falls to 1-6 while TCNJ improves to 3-4.
See Sunday's edition of The Buffalo News for more details.
--- Amy Moritz