Foxborough, MA (Sports Network) - Zurlon Tipton scored four rushing touchdown
to push to Central Michigan Chippewas to a 42-21 victory over the Massachusetts
Minutemen in a Mid-American Conference regular season closer at Gillette
Tipton gained 185 yards on 25 carries to record his sixth consecutive 100-yard
game as Central Michigan (6-6, 4-4 MAC) raised its record back up to the .500
mark to become bowl eligible. Ryan Radcliff went 10-of-19 under center for 82
yards with a touchdown and interception. Jahleel Addae made an impact on the
defensive side of the ball with eight stops, two tackles for loss, and one of
the team's four interceptions.
A.J. Doyle completed 30-of-45 attempts for 253 yards and two touchdowns for
UMass (1-11, 1-7), but was also guilty of three interceptions. Rob Branchflower
made 10 receptions for 100 yards and a score while Michael Cox paced the team
on the ground with 66 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries. Perry McIntyre
registered 18 total tackles in his final collegiate game.
Central Michigan struck first as Tipton punched it in from a yard out for the
opening quarter's only touchdown.
The Chippewas added onto their advantage early in the second quarter when
Radcliff completed a five-yard touchdown pass to Connor Odykirk.
UMass was unable to get anything going until it received a boost from its
defense. Darren Thellen intercepted Radcliff and returned it to the CMU nine-
yard line. The Minutemen then scored on third down when Cox rushed one yard
across the goal like to make it 14-7.
The Minutemen then took over at midfield with just over two minutes left in the
second frame. Doyle guided the offense down the field before he found
Branchflower in the endzone for an eight-yard touchdown pass, which evened the
score at 14 with seconds remaining before the intermission.
The home team appeared to be headed towards its second win in as many weeks as
Doyle found Walker for an 11 yard touchdown pass at the conclusion of the
Minutemen's opening drive in the third quarter.
Central Michigan trailed until the 2:21 mark of the third period when Tipton
scored a three-yard run to even the score. Addae intercepted Doyle on UMass's
ensuing possession and Tipton rushed it in from nine yards out on the next play
to give his team a 28-21 advantage heading into the final quarter.
Saylor Lavallii scored on a six yard run just under three minutes into the
fourth frame to give CMU some insurance. Tipton then scored his fourth and
final touchdown with 6:19 remaining on a 61-yard dash to the end zone.
Three of the Minutemen's final five drives ended with an interception, one
ended with a turnover-on-downs, and they also punted once over that span. CMU
scored touchdowns on four of its last five possessions to become bowl eligible
for the first time since 2010. The Minutemen's loss concluded their first
season as a member of the FBS.
The Sports Network