In the second all-time meeting between the two schools, Louisiana Tech (6-2, 4-1) defeated FAU (3-5, 1-3) 21-13 to become bowl eligible for the 5th straight season under Skip Holtz.
With under three minutes left in the game, FAU was set to get the ball back one last time to force overtime, but a leaping penalty on Tech’s punt granted the Bulldogs an automatic first down, ending any hopes of a comeback. It was FAU’s 11th penalty of the game.
J’Mar Smith passed for 217 yards and a touchdown. His touchdown pass was the best throw of the game as he found Teddy Veal on a corner fade route to give Tech a 21-13 lead halfway through the fourth quarter.
Perfect throw ✅— LA Tech Football (@LATechFB) October 27, 2018
Beautiful catch ✅
Extending the lead ✅ pic.twitter.com/8AD34WLHsG
While there was still more than enough time for the Owls to mount a comeback, the offense failed to do anything if Devin Singletary wasn’t involved. Motor rushed for 171 yards and a touchdown on the night. Despite Motor’s monster game, the passing offense lacked creativity and was unreliable for much of the game.
In his first start of the season, Rave Peavey was 15-of-26 with 115 yards and an interception. Almost half of his completions were of the shovel pass variety. When Peavey did try to stretch the Tech defense vertically, he was either harassed by Jaylon Ferguson or nearly intercepted by Tech’s swarming secondary.
After scoring the first 10 points of the game and outplaying Tech for much of the first half, FAU entered the locker room losing as they surrendered 14 points in the final three minutes of the second quarter. Jaqwis Dancy scored Tech’s first touchdown of the game from 20 yards out, and finished the game with 116 yards. After a Peavey fumble, Tech marched down the field just before the first half ended and took the lead behind a Kam McKnight touchdown run.
Despite all of the momentum on Tech’s sideline going into the second half, FAU had ample opportunities to re-take the lead but could never sustain any drives. The defense played well once again as they held Tech to 330 yards and allowed 2.8 yards per rush.
J’Mar Smith lived up to his reputation of being an inconsistent passer as the Owls forced him to finish with a 48 percent completion percentage, but ultimately the defense surrendered just a handful more plays than the Tech defense did and that ultimately decided the game.
FAU’s 10-game home winning streak is over. With four games left, any chance of salvaging the season with a bowl game must come next week as the Owls will travel to Miami and take on FIU in the Shula Bowl.
Louisiana Tech remains in the hunt for a C-USA West division title as they are currently one-game behind UAB. The Bulldogs will venture out of conference play next week with a road game against Mississippi State.