The Cincinnati Bearcats rallied to force overtime but eventually succumbed to the SMU Mustangs in a 31-28 loss on Saturday afternoon.
Down 28-20 with the fourth quarter dwindling down, the Bearcats capped a 10-play, 75-yard drive with a 21-yard touchdown pass from Hayden Moore to Devin Gray, which they followed up with a successful two point conversion. There was still a little more than two minutes on the clock at that point, but neither team scored again, necessitating overtime.
The extra session wasn’t great for UC. After SMU got a 27-yard field goal, UC ran the ball twice and picked up six yards. Then, on third-and-four, Moore was intercepted and the game was over.
Moore completed 22-of-35 pass attempts and had two touchdown throws, but he only finished with 189 yards passing. But Moore got a lot of help from the ground game, as the Bearcats rushed for 249 yards on 42 carries. Gerrid Doaks was the most electric runner, finishing with 91 yards on nine carries. Mike Boone (55 yards), Moore (52) and Michael Warren (51) each ran for at least 50 yards as well.
Kahlil Lewis was once again the most-targeted receiver on the field for the Bearcats, hauling in 10 passes for 72 yards on 12 targets. Boone was second on the team with five targets, but he only had one reception for 11 yards.
UC actually outgained the offensively potent Mustangs, 438-435, despite huge games from Trey Quinn (17 receptions, 186 yards) and Courtland Sutton (six receptions, 81 yards, two touchdowns).
The Bearcats are now 2-6 overall and 0-4 in American Athletic Conference play, meaning their already slim bowl chances are nearly dead. They will be off next week before trying to begin the salvaging of the season against Tulane on Nov. 4.