Appalachian State slogs past Miami (Ohio) in the rain-soaked Cure Bowl
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Joey Aguilar threw for 197 yards and scored on an 8-yard run in the third quarter as Appalachian State beat Miami (Ohio) 13-9 on Saturday in the rain-soaked Avocados from Mexico Cure Bowl.
Aguilar's scoring run capped an 11-play, 73-yard drive and gave Appalachian State a 13-3 lead after Michael Hughes kicked field goals of 29 and 22 yards in the first half.
Miami (11-3) answered Aguilar's TD with a 23-yard touchdown by Rashad Amos, cutting its deficit to 13-9.
But the RedHawks squandered a potential chance to take the lead when backup running back Keyon Mozee fumbled on a short carry near midfield with 2:39 remaining. Miami never got the ball back.
The game was played as a steady rain soaked Central Florida and pools of water formed around midfield over the bowl logo and in the endzones. The conditions certainly affected play. There were 13 fumbles, with Appalachian State losing two and Miami losing three. Stadium officials said more than an inch-and-a-half of rain fell by halftime.
Appalachian State (9-5) rushed for 151 yards in the second half. Anderson Castle had 119 yards on 18 carries for the Mountaineers.
Amos had a career-best 180 yards on 33 carries and accounted for the RedHawks’ only TD. Graham Nicholson kicked a 34-yard field goal in the first quarter.
Miami struggled to get going offensively behind third string quarterback Henry Hesson, who was making his first career start.
The Mountaineers had a 332-227 advantage in total yards. Amos accounted for most of the RedHawks' total.
Appalachian State celebrated its victory by sliding through the water and mud covering the midfield logo.
Miami quarterback Henry Hesson made his first career start after regular starting quarterback Brett Gabbert sustained a season-ending right leg injury in October and second string Aveon Smith opted to sit out the game and enter the transfer portal.
Hesson completed 5 of 8 passes for 16 yards.
Sophomore quarterback Maddox Kopp also came in during the second quarter for his second collegiate appearance, and threw his first passes for the RedHawks. He completed only one pass for 28 yards.
The RedHawks had 44 total passing yards in the game.
Miami will be looking to settle its quarterback position with the hopeful return of Brett Gabbert after a season-ending injury. The RedHawks' schedule next year features Power 5 conference road trips to Northwestern, rival Cincinnati and Notre Dame.
Appalachian State looks to build off a strong season with the return of junior quarterback Joey Aguilar as they look for their first Sun Belt championship since 2019. Next season's schedule includes includes a trip to play Clemson.
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