AP

Hoosiers rally late to fend off Hilltoppers 33-30 in OT

Sep 17, 2022, 1:19 AM | Updated: 3:11 pm

Indiana place kicker Charles Campbell (93) is congratulated by Indiana quarterback Connor Bazelak (...

Indiana place kicker Charles Campbell (93) is congratulated by Indiana quarterback Connor Bazelak (9) after Campbell kicked a game winning field goal in overtime of an NCAA college football game against Western Kentucky, Saturday, Sept. 17, 2022, in Bloomington, Ind. Indiana won 33-30 in overtime. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — Late comebacks are quickly becoming old hat for the Indiana Hoosiers.

They’ll certainly take it.

Connor Bazelak threw a touchdown pass and completed a 2-point conversion pass with 47 seconds left in regulation Saturday and Charles Campbell made a 51-yard field goal in overtime to give the Hoosiers a 33-30 victory over Western Kentucky.

It’s the third straight second-half comeback for Indiana (3-0), which has already surpassed last season’s victory total.

“I’ll say this — there is a plan to keep the fans in the stands and if it comes down to the final play, they’ve got to stay, right?,” coach Tom Allen joked after tearing off his headset and sprinting onto the field to celebrate. “What do I remember (about the kick)? I remember that he crushed it and it was going to be good from about 60.”

Getting there, though, took everything Indiana could muster — a 17-point fourth quarter, a late goal-line stand, a missed field goal by Western Kentucky as time expired and a blocked field goal in overtime just to set up Campbell’s winning kick.

For the Hilltoppers (2-1), it was another disheartening chapter in this series.

They fell to 0-5 all-time against the Hoosiers and have lost the last three by a total of eight points. They’re also 0-9 against Big Ten foes since joining the FBS in 2007.

It looked like those losing streaks would end for most of the game. But the Hoosiers refused to go down without a fight and eventually won.

“Offensively, we had some drives stall out and the penalties and turnovers hurt us down the stretch,” Western Kentucky coach Tyson Helton said. “We’ve got to play better to win. At the end of the day, we didn’t win so we’ve got to play better.”

Austin Reed threw two touchdown passes and ran for another as the Hilltoppers led 24-13 after three quarters.

But Josh Henderson’s 19-yard TD run early in the fourth quarter cut the deficit to five and ignited Indiana’s comeback.

After exchanging field goals, Bazelak hooked up with Cam Camper on a 4-yard TD pass before finding converted quarterback Donaven McCulley on the ensuing conversion to tie the score at 30.

Brayden Narveson pushed the potential winning kick wide right then had the next one blocked and nearly returned for a score to win it before Campbell closed it out.

“I told (Bryant) Fitzgerald ‘If you had lateralled it to me, I would have scored. I thought he might go the distance and get us the win,” Allen said. “But when the team needed (Campbell) today and when it needed him the most, he came through.”

THE TAKEAWAY

Western Kentucky: The Hilltoppers have been a dangerous team for years and were on the cusp of a signature victory. Yes, it hurts and, no, it wasn’t pretty. But they’re a legitimate Conference USA contender.

Indiana: So the Hoosiers have been saving their best ball for late-game heroics but at least they’re still unbeaten. The next job is figuring out how to start faster and avoid some of the stressful finishes.

WACKY WORLD

Even before the final, frenzied flurry, it was a strange game.

Indiana’s starting center, Zach Carpenter, sat out after getting hurt in pregame warmups. Western Kentucky starting safety Kaleb Oliver drew a targeting call on Indiana’s fifth play — a call that was reversed on a replay review.

And at the end of the first half, Indiana receiver D.J. Matthews Jr. and Western Kentucky defensive backs Kahlef Hailassie and Talique Allen ran into the goal post chasing Bazelak’s overthrown pass.

STAT PACK

Western Kentucky: The Hilltoppers had 545 total yards as Reed went 33 of 43 with 329 yards, two scores and one interception. … Kye Robichaux had 14 carries for 135 yards. … Daewood Davis had five catches for 77 yards including a 44-yard TD while Malachi Corley had eight catches for 77 yards.

Indiana: Bazelak went 33 of 55 with 364 yards and two scores to help the Hoosiers finish with 484 total yards. … Camper caught eight passes for 93 yards. … Henderson had 11 carries for 65 yards and Shaun Shivers ran 15 times for 58 yards.

UP NEXT

Western Kentucky: Hosts Florida International next Saturday..

Indiana: Makes its first road trip next Saturday at Cincinnati

___

More AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25. Sign up for the AP’s college football newsletter: https://apnews.com/cfbtop25

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Ex-Packer Guion gets 1 year for domestic violence assault

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Former Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Letroy Guion was sentenced to one year in jail after pleading no contest in a domestic violence assault at his home last fall. Brown County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Walsh also ordered Guion on Tuesday to serve three years’ probation and complete a domestic […]

1 year ago

Joe Jarzynka...

Associated Press

Durant eager for Suns debut vs. Hornets after knee injury

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kevin Durant has been through quite a bit during his 15-year NBA career — but joining a new team midway through the season is a new one for the 13-time All-Star. The 34-year-old Durant doesn’t seem all that worried. Durant makes his highly anticipated Phoenix Suns debut on Wednesday night against […]

1 year ago

FILE - Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores stands on the sideline during the second half of an N...

Associated Press

Judge: NFL coach can press discrimination claims in court

NEW YORK (AP) — NFL Coach Brian Flores can pursue some of his discrimination claims against the league and its teams in court rather than through arbitration, a judge ruled Wednesday. The written decision by Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan was issued months after lawyers for the league tried to get the lawsuit moved to […]

1 year ago

Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Alex Stalock cools off in the first period during an NHL hockey game ...

Associated Press

Kane trade reinforces hard reality of Blackhawks rebuild

CHICAGO (AP) — After days of speculation, the harsh reality of the Chicago Blackhawks’ situation was reinforced by one move in a flurry of transactions ahead of the NHL trade deadline. Showtime is over, at least in Chicago, and a seemingly bright future is, well, way off in the distance. The reverberations of Chicago’s decision […]

1 year ago

FILE -  Yves Jean-Bart, president of the Haitian Football Federation, wearing a protective face mas...

Associated Press

Disgraced ex-Haitian soccer president announces he’s back

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti’s former soccer federation president whose lifetime ban from sport over sexual abuse allegations was overturned last month announced Wednesday that he is reclaiming his position. Yves Jean-Bart’s defiant announcement could lead to a standoff with FIFA, which already has appointed an emergency management committee to lead the Haitian Football Association […]

1 year ago

FILE - Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after an NFL football game against the ...

Associated Press

Rodgers says decision on future will come ‘soon enough’

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Aaron Rodgers says he will make a decision on his future “soon enough” as the four-time MVP quarterback ponders whether to play next season and if his future remains with the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers, 39, discussed his future while speaking on an episode of the “Aubrey Marcus Podcast” that […]

1 year ago

Hoosiers rally late to fend off Hilltoppers 33-30 in OT