The World Series between the New York Yankees and the Arizona Diamondbacks was a series highlighted by big hits. On Saturday, the Ball State Cardinals showed the Chippewas of Central Michigan that they had some big play capability of their own in a 38-34 Ball State victory.
"We got some big hits that we haven't been getting," Ball State's head football coach Bill Lynch said.
The "big hits" started right off the bat. On the first play of the game, Cardinal quarterback Talmadge Hill threw a 32-yard strike to tight end Tim Streit. Before the game was over, Hill had completed six passes of 20 yards or more and thrown for a total of 303 yards.
"That's a great feeling," Hill said, "when you can let it go and guys come up and make the play."
The open offense was something that the Cardinals had discussed prior to going into Saturday's game.
"You can only nickel and dime people so long," Lynch said, "Eventually you have to get some down the field. We knew we were going to have to throw down the field to win today."
The Cardinals felt they could take advantage of a Chippewa secondary that has a reputation of giving up big plays.
"We knew their secondary was susceptible to giving up some big shots," Hill said.
One of the main beneficiaries of the new vertical style was wide receiver Sean Schembra who caught two passes on the day that totaled 116 yards of offense and one touchdown. The touchdown came on a 78-yard bomb in the fourth quarter that ended up being the game winning score.
"Schembra had two big ones," Lynch said. "One was really the game winner. He caught that thing and took off."
While Schembra was excited about the opportunity to go after the long ball, he said he just does what the game plan requires of him.
"I just do what I can to help the team," Schembra said. "If it calls for short passes or a couple of long ones."