The Cougars responded with a nine-yard touchdown run by Kenneth Farrow, tying the game up 7-7. Farrow now leads the AAC with 12 rushing touchdowns this season.
In the second quarter Kiel connected with Alex Chisum for an eight-yard touchdown reception, taking the lead back, 14-7.
On the next Houston possession Greg Ward Jr. threw his only interception of the game, picked off by Aaron Brown.
An impressive 58-yard, career long rush by Farrow put the Cougars in field goal range. The 27-yard field goal attempt by Kyle Bullard was successful making it 14-10. Saturday’s matchup was Farrow’s sixth 100-yard rushing game this season.
With 33 seconds left in the first half, Kiel connected with Shaq Washington for a 12-yard touchdown pass. Heading into halftime Houston trailed Cincinnati by 11 points.
At the start of the third quarter, senior Munchie Legaux took over quarterback duties, and Boone scored his second touchdown of the day with a one-yard rush into the end zone, creating an 18-point deficit.
The Cougars began their comeback as dual-threat quarterback Ward Jr. took off in the open field for a 40-yard touchdown run. Ward Jr. now has six rushing touchdowns on the season.
As the Third Ward Defense went to work, Legaux was unable to get the Cincinnati offense down the field. The Bearcat field goal unit took the field, but Andrew Gantz missed the 43-yard attempt.
With 15 seconds left in the third quarter, Boone went in at the quarterback position and scored his third touchdown of the day with a six-yard rush, improving to a comfortable 18-point lead once again.
Houston kicked off the fourth quarter with an 89-yard touchdown reception from Ward Jr. to Markeith Ambles, a career best for both players. Still with 14:49 on the clock the Cougars were only 11 points behind the Bearcats.
The Third Ward D was relentless as they held the Cincinnati offense to a field goal. Gantz’s 40-yard field goal attempt was good, and the Bearcats began pulling away from the Cougars again, 38-24.
With 05:27 left in the game, Ward Jr. connected with Demarcus Ayers for a 26-yard touchdown reception, as the Cougars found themselves a mere touchdown away from tying up the game.
As the last seconds ticked off the clock, Houston was not able to capitalize on their last possession of the game and take it into overtime.
Ward Jr. threw for 360 yards against Cincinnati, marking the second 300-yard or more game of his career.
Houston’s infamous defense was unable to create any turnovers Saturday, ending their nation best streak of 34 consecutive contests with takeaways.