McKinney leaves a Falcon in the dust.

Eastern Kentucky University quarterback Parker McKinney avoids a Bowling Green defender for a Colonels first down. McKinney threw for 324 yards and three touchdowns and ran for another 36 yards and broke the EKU record for career completions in the game.

The Eastern Kentucky Colonels defeated Bowling Green State University (BGSU) in 7 overtimes, 59-57, on Saturday in Bowling Green, Ohio. The game marked the first NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) win for EKU since 2014 and tied for the second-longest overtime game in Division I football history. 

BGSU took an early lead against the Colonels with a 45-yard field goal and a touchdown in the first quarter, leaving the Colonels scoreless through the first 15 minutes of play.

EKU scored first in the second quarter with a Parker McKinney 6-yard pass to Jayden Higgins and a Patrick Nations kick to close the gap to 10-7, Falcons leading.

BGSU scored less than two minutes later to extend their lead again, 17-7.

With less than three minutes to play in the first half, Nations made a 24-yard field goal to bring the Colonels within one score. 

During a Bowling Green possession, a bad snap by the Falcons allowed Jadyn Bost to recover the ball in the endzone. Bost’s score gave EKU the tying touchdown with 1:41 left in the second quarter after a successful Nations extra point

With only 13 seconds left in the first half, Braedon Sloan ran for 15-yards (Nations kick) giving  EKU the edge heading into halftime, 24-17.

In the third quarter, EKU had the edge, scoring first with a 2-yard pass from McKinney to Cornelius McCoy, giving EKU a two-score lead, 31-17.

BGSU answered at the end of the third, closing EKU’s lead to seven.

The Falcons came out hot in the fourth quarter, scoring twice to regain the lead, 38-31.

With only 3:39 left in regulation play, the Colonels were down by seven and had 75 yards to go. EKU worked up the field, and with only a few seconds left on the clock, McKinney tossed a 3-yard pass to Higgins for a Colonels touchdown as the clock hit zero. Nations then tied the game at 38 with an extra-point kick. 

Heading into the first overtime, Bowling Green had the first opportunity to score, and did so with a 3-yard pass and extra point.

EKU answered with a 3-yard run by Kyeandre Magloire and a Nations kick.

Heading into the second overtime, EKU scored with a 3-yard run by Sloan; however, a failed two-point conversion gave BGSU an opening.

Bowling Green scored a touchdown with a 7-yard pass, but similar to EKU, a failed two-point conversion tied the game at 51.

In the third overtime, each team had the opportunity to attempt a two-point conversion play for the win. Both teams successfully completed their conversions, tying the game again, 53-53

In the fourth overtime, McKinney connected with Higgins to give the Colonels the lead, 55-53. BGSU answered with a completed conversion to tie the game at 55.

Both teams failed to complete a conversion in the fifth overtime, taking the game into the sixth overtime where they both completed their conversions, tying the game at 57.

In the final overtime, the Colonels successfully stopped Bowling Green, leaving an opening for the EKU offense to win the game. McKinney threw a pass to Sloan, completing the conversion and giving EKU their first win of the season, 59-57.

McKinney led the EKU offense with 33 of 47 passes completed, 324 total yards with 36 rushing, three touchdowns and only a single interception. Sloan contributed 56 rushing yards and 52 receiving.

Jaden Smith received 102 yards off seven catches, Dakota Allen received 67 yards off six catches and Higgins contributed 28 receiving yards with the game-tying touchdown at the end of regulation.

The game was the first FBS win for EKU since 2014, but also historic for quarterback Parker McKinney who broke EKU’s record for career completions in the second quarter with a pass to Smith.

Grabbing the game-tying touchdown in the fourth quarter to take the Colonels into overtime, sophomore wide receiver Jayden Higgins said, “My coach always tells me when opportunity comes, just take full advantage of it, and that’s what I did in that play.”

Interim head coach Garry McPeek talked about EKU’s win and McKinney’s performance. 

“As long as you got 18, we got a chance. We had to get one at the end there, and we used every second of that drive. In that situation to go 70 (yards), I wouldn’t want anyone but 18 running the show,” said McPeek.

Walt Wells was also present on the EKU sideline after suffering a cardiac episode on Aug. 28. His presence was welcomed by coaches and players.

“Obviously, as a team, we love having Coach Wells on the sideline. You could tell he was trying not to get too worked up over the game, but I think he’s probably so happy that we won. It just goes to show (that) all of these other coaches are stepping up and filling a role whenever he isn’t there. We didn't miss a beat,” said McKinney.

“Cabin on the Hill everytime we win is special, but it was really special tonight. He (Walt Wells) was in there and he led it,” said McPeek.

The Colonels head back home to ‘The Cabin on the Hill’ at Roy Kidd Stadium this weekend, Sep. 17, to take on Charleston Southern for the season home opener with a 6 p.m. kickoff.

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