Ohio Bobcats

Ohio quarterback Kurtis Rourke fumbles the ball during the first half against Northwestern in Evanston, Ill. on Saturday. The Bobcats fell to 0-4 after a 35-6 loss.

EVANSTON, Ill. — The Ohio Bobcats concluded the non-conference portion of their 2021 schedule, and they’ll surely be looking forward to turning the page.

The Bobcats fell to 0-4 on the season, losing at Northwestern 35-6 on Saturday.

Ohio is off to its worst start since going 0-4 in 2008, which is also the last losing season for the program.

The Bobcats will need a big season inside the Mid-American Conference to get back above the .500 mark after season-opening defeats to Syracuse (29-9), Duquesne (28-26), Louisiana (49-14) and now Northwestern (35-6).

Northwestern’s Evan Hull had a big day against Ohio’s defense, rushing for 216 yards on 22 carries, scoring two touchdowns. His 90-yard touchdown run gave the Wildcats a 14-0 first-half lead.

Northwestern (2-2) gained 461 yards of total offense, compared to 348 for Ohio. The Wildcats had 373 yards on 51 carries, with the Bobcats gaining just 179 rushing yards on 31 attempts.

Hull’s 17-yard run opened the scoring and came after an Ohio turnover.

Northwestern was ahead 17-0 at halftime after Charlie Kuhbander’s 24-yard field goal, then 20-0 in the third quarter after Kuhbander’s 26-yard field goal.

Anthony Tyus pushed the Wildcats’ lead to 26-0 after a 7-yard run with 6:00 to play, and Stephon Robsinon Jr’s 2-point conversion made it 28-0.

The Wildcats added another late touchdown on Jake Arthurs’ 5-yard touchdown run for a 35-0 lead.

The Bobcats were able to avoid the shutout when Armani Rogers scored on a 55-yard touchdown run on the final play of the game. No point after kick was attempted, making the final 35-6.

Kurtis Rourke completed 20 of 29 passes for 166 yards and an interception.

The late run made Rogers the team’s leading rusher with 68 yards on seven carries. De’Montre Tuggle added 42 yards on six carries, with O’Shaan Allison gaining 35 yards on nine attempts. Rourke had 33 yards on eight carries.

Cameron Odom caught five passes for 42 yards for Ohio, with Ty Walton catching four passes for 44 yards. Isiah Cox had three catches for 22 yards, and Ryan Luehrman two catches for 22 yards.

Ryan Hilinski completed 12 of 20 passes for Northwestern for 88 yards.

Andrew Clair added 71 yards on eight carries, while Robinson Jr. caught four passes for 44 yards.

Ohio can not turn its attention to the MAC, as it travels to Akron on Saturday in the conference opener.

Kickoff is slated for 3:30 p.m.

Email at kwiseman@athensmessenger.com; follow on Twitter @KevinWmessenger

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