Late Temple Rally Falls Short In 30-29 Loss to Fordham
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Michael Nebrich found Sam Ajala in the end zone for a 29-yard touchdown with four seconds remaining to give Fordham a 30-29 win over Temple at Lincoln Financial Field on Saturday.
The win is Fordham’s first over an FBS opponent since it reinstated its football program in 1970 and advances the Rams to 3-0 this season. Temple, meanwhile, is 0-3 for the first time since 2007. This is the Owls’ 11th all-time loss to an FCS team.
Nebrich completed 23 of 36 attempts for 320 yards and two touchdowns. His final pass, the game-winner, was reviewed when Temple challenged that Ajala was an ineligible receiver after he went out of bounds.
The touchdown was upheld when the referees ruled that Ajala was forced out and legally re-entered the field.
Temple nearly rallied in the second half behind emergency quarterback Connor Reilly, who started Temple’s first two games but injured his right knee in the fourth quarter last week.
Temple trailed 20-7 in the third quarter but Reilly led the offense to three touchdowns on his first three drives, twice giving Temple the lead in the second half.
But on his final play of the game, Reilly engaged in a prolonged scrambled before he was finally sacked. He finished the game 7-for-8 passing for 69 yards with two touchdowns, after appearing in relief of senior backup Clinton Granger and freshman P.J. Walker.
Reilly said after the game that his injury is officially a bone bruise and a sprained ACL.
For Fordham, Ajala finished as Nebrich’s leading receiver, with seven receptions and 134 yards. Carlton Koonce amassed 194 total yards and a touchdown on 26 rushes and four receptions.
Temple linebacker Tyler Matakevich recorded a game-high 14 tackles. Matakevich has led Temple in tackles in 10 of the 11 games he’s started, dating back to last season.