HALFTIME: WKU 49, No. 19 Marshall 42

Redshirt senior quarterback Brandon Doughty looks downfield during Saturday’s game at Houchens-Smith Stadium in Bowling Green, Ky. Nick Wagner/HERALD

Herald Sports Staff

HUNTINGTON, W. VA. – Western Kentucky currently leads No. 19 Marshall 49-42 at halftime at Joan C. Edwards Stadium.

Both teams have combined for 840 total yards of offense.

Brandon Doughty has completed 21-of-28 passes for 285 yards and six touchdowns with one interception. Marshall’s Rakeem Cato has thrown for 246 yards and five touchdowns with three interceptions to redshirt sophomore Branden Leston.

Stewart Butler leads Marshall in rushing with 93 yards on six attempts and a score. WKU junior Leon Allen has 157 yards on the ground and 39 yards receiving with two touchdowns. 

WKU went to work quickly with a nine-play, 62 yard drive capped by an 11-yard touchdown pass from Brandon Doughty to Tyler Higbee just 3:02 into the game.

Cato’s second pass of the game was intercepted by Leston, who returned it to the MU 17. It was Leston’s second career interception and his second in as many weeks.

The Hilltoppers scored on the first play of the drive when Doughty escaped pressure by rolling to his right and finding Leon Allen in the corner of the endzone for a 17-yard score to put WKU up 14-0 with 11:23 left in the first quarter.

Cato bounced back on the next Marshall possession completing 6 of 8 passes for 80 yards, including a 26-yard touchdown pass to Tommy Shuler to cut the deficit to 14-7 with 8:56 to go in the first quarter.

On WKU’s first play on the next possession, Doughty hit Taywan Taylor deep to the right side for a 75-yard touchdown pass to make it 21-7.

Cato went right back to work on Marshall’s next possession with a five-play, 68 yard drive capped by a 14-yard scoring pass to Hyleck Foster.

Doughty found Higbee once again with a 20-yard score and Cato responded with a  40-yard touchdown pass to Davonte Allen to make it 28-21 at the end of the first quarter.

Doughty became the first FBS quarterback this season to throw for 40 touchdowns and also became WKU’s first ever 4,000-yard passer with his first quarter.

Leston intercepted Cato once again, this time in the second quarter to give WKU the ball at the Marshall 31.

Leon Allen punched it in four plays later from 10-yards out to make it 35-21 WKU with 13:13 to play in the first half.

Leston picked off Cato for a third time on Marshall’s ensuing drive, and once again, WKU capitalized.

Leon Allen ran for 36 yards to the Marshall nine-yard line to set up a touchdown pass from Doughty to Joel German, making it 42-21 with 10:37 left in the first half.

The Thundering Herd responded with an eight-play, 69-yard drive capped by a two-yard touchdown pass from Cato to Eric Frohnapfel.

Doughty threw his first interception since Nov. 1 at Louisiana Tech when A.J. Leggett picked him off at the WKU 48. Stewart Butler took it to the house on the first play of the drive to pull Marshall within a touchdown.

Higbee caught his third touchdown pass of the game with a nine-yard reception from Doughty to make it 49-35 with 2:12 left in the first half.

Davonte Allen caught his second score of the day with a 33-yard touchdown reception from Cato to make it 49-42 at halftime.