Rapid Reaction: Indiana edges Western Kentucky in close battle
Final score: Indiana 33, Western Kentucky 31
Brief recap: This game was back and forth for a while even though the Hoosiers were up 2 scores on multiple occasions. They led 14-0 at the end of the first quarter, 23-14 at halftime, and 33-24 in the fourth quarter before finally winning the game. None of their touchdowns came through the air as it was a ground & pound kind of game for Indiana. They finished the game with 134 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns.
Key player: Michael Penix Jr. would go here if he had some passing touchdowns but this one goes to running back Stephen Carr. He finished the day with 109 yards on 25 carries with 2 rushing touchdowns and he also averaged nearly 4.5 yards a carry. Before this game, he had just 1 rushing touchdown in 3 games but he came alive when the Hoosiers needed him most in this one.
Key moment: With less than 5 minutes remaining in the 4th quarter, Carr found the endzone for the second time and put Indiana up 2 scores again. Even though Western Kentucky made it 33-31 with only a couple of minutes left, Carr will get credit for the game-winner. It was a great run and exactly what the doctor ordered at that time.
Key stat: 101/18 – that’s the Hoosiers’ third-down efficiency in this contest and a big reason they came out on top. Whenever a team wins a game, it usually does great on third downs and it was no different in this one. The Hoosiers ran and passed on third down and Western Kentucky had next to no answer for it.
What it means: The Hoosiers got back to .500 on the year as they’re now 2-2 heading into the rest of conference play. They’ll travel to State College for a primetime matchup against Penn State next Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET.