The Tulsa Golden Hurricane beat the Old Dominion Monarchs 30-17 to win the Myrtle Beach Bowl. This matchup was a one-score game throughout the first half, but Tulsa managed to break away thanks to solid defense in the second half. The Golden Hurricane now have its first bowl win since 2016, and Ricky Rahne has his first bowl loss as the Monarchs’ head coach. Here’s a quarter-by-quarter recap of Tulsa’s impressive win over Old Dominion.
Quarter 1: Offenses Start Off Strong
The Monarchs started the game with a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by LaMareon James. In their second drive, the Monarchs got near the red zone thanks to a big play from quarterback Hayden Wolff to Zack Kuntz. However, Nick Rice ended up missing a 41-yard field goal to end the drive.
Penalties held back Old Dominion’s offense in the first half. On the Monarchs’ third drive, they were forced to pass on all three downs due to a penalty committed on first down. This mistake led to a three-and-out for Old Dominion’s offense.
Running back Shamari Brooks started Tulsa’s first drive with two runs for 15 yards. Quarterback Davis Brin then had two big throws to JuanCarlos Santana for a collective 50 yards to get the Golden Hurricane in the red zone. Brooks finished off the drive by rushing the ball in from one yard out for a touchdown.
Tulsa’s offense was really clicking to start the game. Anthony Watkins got into action on the second drive, and he had three rushes for 25 yards. On third down, Brin connected with Josh Johnson for 23 yards to put the Golden Hurricane up by a touchdown.
Deneric Prince had three consecutive rushes on Tulsa’s third drive to put the Golden Hurricane in a fourth down situation. Tulsa chose to go for it on fourth down, but Braylon Braxton was unable to get a first down for Tulsa: turnover on downs.
Tulsa entered the second quarter up 14-7 over Old Dominion.
Quarter 2: Defenses Hold Ground
The Monarchs relied on Blake Watson to run the ball on their fourth drive; he had five rushes for 25 yards to get Old Dominion in the red zone. Wolff was unable to hit Kuntz on third down, forcing the Monarchs to settle for a field goal.
Elijah Davis got some touches on Old Dominion’s fifth drive. A facemask penalty pushed the Monarchs back 15 yards on first down, and they were forced to punt after failing to convert on a third-and-long situation.
Watson started the Monarchs’ sixth drive with four rushes for more than 15 yards. Wolff then threw a deep pass, which was intercepted by Tulsa’s LJ Wallace.
Old Dominion’s seventh drive ended the half with a quarterback kneel. The Golden Hurricane really struggled on offense in the first half.
The Golden Hurricane’s fourth drive was a three-and-out due to a sack by the Monarchs’ Jordan Young for a loss of seven yards.
Tulsa managed to get near the red zone on its fifth drive, but a personal foul penalty on second down led the Golden Hurricane to punt the ball.
Tulsa started its last drive of the first half, sixth drive, inside of four minutes. Brin had a big completion to Johnson on fourth down in Old Dominion territory to continue the drive. The Golden Hurricane ended up settling for a field goal to close out the half.
Tulsa went into halftime leading 17-10 over Old Dominion.
Quarter 3: Tulsa Stretches The Lead
The Monarchs’ eighth drive was another three-and-out after Wolff was sacked by Jaxon Player on first down. Old Dominion’s offensive line had a hard time protecting Wolff in this game. However, Tulsa did send some blitz packages that made it hard on the Monarchs’ offense.
Old Dominion chose to start its ninth drive by throwing three times, and that led to a fourth-and-10 situation after the Monarchs could not goin a yard. Tulsa’s defense just had Old Dominion’s offense grounded.
Brooks had a big run for 20 yards to start Tulsa’s seventh drive. Tulsa’s running back core, including Brooks, Braxton, and Prince, was extremely effective in this game. Brin just could not get the ball in the end zone for the Golden Hurricane. Tulsa had to settle for a field goal even on this long, 15-play drive.
The Golden Hurricane’s eighth drive was yet another long, 11-play drive. Prince led Tulsa in the red zone, and four of his rushes on this drive were more than six yards. Tulsa could’ve gone for it on a fourth-and-short situation, but a field goal comfortably increased the lead for the Golden Hurricane.
Quarter 4: Tulsa Finishes The Game
The Monarchs were looking poised on their 10th drive, with Watson having a rush for 20 yards and Brin completing a throw to Ali Jennings III for 30 yards. However, Jennings ended up fumbling the ball, and it resulted in a touchback.
Wolff had two big throws to Stone Smartt on Old Dominion’s 11th drive, but it was too little too late. After a big play to Jennings, Watson rushed it in from two yards out for the Monarchs’ only touchdown in the second half.
Tulsa managed to get the ball past midfield again on its ninth drive. However, an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty put the Golden Hurricane back at midfield, and Tulsa ended up turning the ball over on downs.
The Golden Hurricanes’ 10th drive essentially sealed the win. Brin made a big throw to Johnson on third down for 15 yards to get Tulsa back in the red zone. Santana had a six-yard run to bring the Golden Hurricane inside the five-yard line, and Brin completed a pass to Ethan Hall for Tulsa’s third touchdown.
Tulsa put the ball in the hands of Brooks, Watkins, and Steven Anderson to end the game. The Golden Hurricane’s last drive was representative of Tulsa’s dominant rushing attack that led the Golden Hurricane to a win in the Myrtle Beach Bowl.
Tulsa beat Old Dominion 30-17 to win the bowl game.
While the Tulsa Golden Hurricane have been inconsistent under coach Philip Montgomery, this bowl win will perhaps lead to a change in the direction for the program. Just two years back, the Old Dominion Monarchs finished 1-11, and the Monarchs did not even play in 2020. The Monarchs are clearly in the right direction after making it to the Myrtle Beach Bowl in 2021; both Tulsa and Old Dominion are bound to be even better in the near future.
Main Image courtesy AP Photo/Mic Smith