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Student newspaper serving Tulane University, Uptown New Orleans

The Tulane Hullabaloo

Student newspaper serving Tulane University, Uptown New Orleans

The Tulane Hullabaloo

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Tulane gains road win with 30-28 victory at Rice

The Tulane Green Wave continued their hot streak with a tight 30-28 victory against Rice University on Saturday. The last time Tulane beat Rice was in 2010, and Saturday was the first time in the over 100 year history of the matchup that either team has been ranked

Running back Makhi Hughes continued his excellent play right off the bat, with a 43-yard rush into Rice territory on the first play of the game. The offense stalled at the Rice 26-yard line, and Kicker Valentino Ambrosio drilled a 44-yarder to give Tulane the lead. 

The Tulane defense forced their first three and out of the day, sending the offense back onto the field. Tulane had an explosive first play, with quarterback Michael Pratt and Jha’Quan Jackson linking up for a 38-yard reception. Three plays later, Pratt threw a perfect ball to Yulkeith Brown in the endzone for a 26-yard score. Following the Ambrosio extra point, the Green Wave were up two scores. JT Daniels responded, leading the Owls offense on a seven play, 82-yard drive ending in a rushing touchdown by Rice running back Juma Otoviano. Daniels showcased his exceptional ball distribution skills, connecting with four different receivers, each reception spanning a minimum of 10 yards. 

Pratt hit wide receiver Chris Brazzell II twice on the drive, and targeted him a third time on a fourth down. Brazzell drew a defensive pass interference penalty, keeping the drive alive in the red zone. Pratt scrambled for 13 yards to the Rice three-yard line, and finished off the drive with a one-yard sneak for a score.​​ 

The Owls offense set up a third and three, but a controversial offensive pass interference call set them back to a third and 18. The Green Wave defense forced their second three and out on three total Owls offensive drives. Tulane’s strong defensive stand led to excellent field position, but their offense stalled in the red zone, resulting in Ambrosio missing a 29-yard field goal. 

The Green Wave defense continued to show out, forcing another three and out, and a short punt gave Tulane the ball at midfield. After a six-yard Hughes run, the Owls defense stopped Pratt scramble on third and one. Offensive Coordinator Slade Nagle dialed up another designed run for Pratt, gaining 11 yards. Pratt found Brazzell again for 20 yards, and gave the offense first down at the Rice 10-yard line. After two runs and nine yards from Hughes, Pratt found tight end Alex Bauman in the endzone for the score, his third in the last game and a half. Ambrosio shook off the previous miss, and hit the extra point for a 24-7 Tulane lead. 

After two plays for 16 yards, Daniels threw two straight incompletions to force a third and 10. Daniels showed his scrambling ability, gaining 16 yards and extending the drive. After another incompletion and a Devean Deal sack, Daniels threw a crucial interception to DJ Douglas. Pratt and the Green Wave offense executed perfectly. They got the ball with 16 seconds left, and scored a field goal thanks to a Shaadie Clayton-Johnson 29-yard catch and run. 

Ambrosio drilled a 41-yard field goal as time expired, giving Tulane the 27-7 lead entering halftime. 

Rice came out of the locker rooms strong, with a 12 play, 75-yard drive, capped off by a Juma Otoviano score, his second of the day. Kicker Tim Horn hit his second extra point of the game to cut the Green Wave lead to 13 points. 

The Green Wave offense looked to continue their exceptional play, but Pratt threw an interception to safety Gabriel Taylor, who returned it 72 yards to the Tulane three-yard line. Daniles found tight end Boden Groen in the end zone, making it a six point game over ten minutes into the third quarter. Pratt took a sack on second down, resulting in a third and 14, which the offense could not recover from. After allowing two straight touchdowns, the defense bounced back and forced another Rice three and out. Hughes ran for 13 yards to close out the third quarter, which set Ambrosio up for a 43-yard field goal to restore Tulane’s two score lead. 

The Owls offense would not go down without a fight. JT Daniels led them 75 yards down the field in six plays, ending with a Luke McCaffrey 35-yard score. Horn hit his fourth extra point of the game, closing the Green Wave lead to just two points. The Green Wave got the ball back with just eight minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, and all the Rice defense needed was one defensive stop to get the ball and take the lead. However, the Green Wave offense ran a perfect 16 play drive that took all but four seconds off the clock. The Owls’ defense forced four third downs and two fourth downs, but key plays from Brazzell, Brown, and Pratt kept the drive rolling. After getting the ball back, the Owls tried a fancy lateral play, but Devean Deal shut it down before it even started. 

 

Pratt ended the day 22 for 30 with 263 passing yards, two scores and an interception. Pratt also added a touchdown on the ground. Hughes over 100 rushing yards for the fourth straight game. Brazzell II and Yulkeith Brown led the way with five receptions each. Brazzell led the way with 75 yards, but Brown added 57 and a touchdown. Bauman added a touchdown as well. 

The Green Wave defense continued their outstanding play, holding former five star recruit Daniels to under 200 passing yards, and the Rice rushing attack to 82 yards. Machado led the way in tackles with 12, while Deal recorded the only sack of the day. Douglas added the only interception. 

The Green Wave play at East Carolina University next Saturday, Nov. 4, at 2:30 p.m. 

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