GALLERY: Ohio defeats UI in opener

OHIO CAME INTO THE KIBBIE DOME Thursday night ready to play, jumped out to a 21 point lead (aided by UI turnovers) and cruised to a 45-28 victory. With Idaho hitting the road this coming weekend to take on USC we take a look back at Thursday's action.

Thursday before the holiday weekend Idaho hosted Ohio of the Mid-American Conference. The Bobcats wasted no time getting into the game, jumping out to a swift 21-0 first quarter lead and never looking back. Idaho cut the deficit to 10 points twice in the fourth quarter but couldn't stop Ohio from adding to their lead.

With USC up next, we take a look back at Thursday's action in the Dome.

Jace Malek (far right) was honored as a team captain this week. A true freshman who had his playing career cut short as he battles cancer, Malek has been an inspirational leader for the team throughout fall camp.

The University of Idaho students were loud and well-represented for Thursday night's home opener, giving the game an electric feeling throughout the first half.

NEW LOOK OFFENSIVE LINE: Three linemen started at new positions this week, including #67 Mason Woods (6-9, 335) working at quick guard and #76 Jordan Rose (6-6, 320) next to him at strong quick tackle. Last fall Woods played strong tackle while Woods manned the quick guard position.

BEHIND THE SCENES: Senior fullback Jake Manley (45) won't get any headlines, but he led the way on most of Idaho's rushing plays including this scoring drive. He also added one reception for eight yards.

TRENCH WARRIOR: On this sequence senior nose guard Ryan Edwards did an outstanding job of flushing Ohio's quarterback out of the pocket. Performance by the interior defensive line gives the linebackers and ends more opportunities to make plays.

EFFECTIVE RUSHING AND RECEIVING: Starting tailback Elijhaa Penny finished with 17 carries for 69 yards and two touchdowns (averaging 4.1 yards per carry), also added five receptions for 32 yards, and returned three kickoffs for for 66 yards and a long of 38 yards.

FRESHMAN GETS THE START: Officially grayshirt freshman linebacker Kaden Elliss was named the starter Thursday against Ohio. He recorded three tackles in his first college football game and a quarterback hurry on this blitz.

BIG OPENING GAME: Idaho's standout wide receiver, senior Dezmon Epps, stretches out in an attempt to get the ball across the goal line. Penny would punch the ball over the line on the next play. Epps led all receivers with an impressive 148 yards on 14 receptions and a long of 23 yards. Nationally Epps is ranked 10th in FBS with his performance.

Sophomore quarterback Matt Linehan and the offense struggled early but got things going as the game progressed. Statistically Linehan finished with 285 yards and a touchdown, completing 35 of 47 attempts. On this play Linehan is on the move launching a pass to ....

... junior Deon Watson in the fourth quarter. Watson, who moved to tightend in the spring, found himself back on the outside as the game progressed and finished with five receptions for 48 yards and one touchdown.

Linehan and Watson completed the scoring drive late in the fourth quarter on this pass. Linehan finished the game ranked 27th nationally with his first game performance.

BUCK LINEBACKER: Sophomore Kevin Shelton worked the full game at the BUCK position and finished with five tackles in the game.

REHKOW'S BIG LEG: Junior Austin Rehkow had another outstanding outing in all facets of the kicking game. All but one of his kickoffs sailed through the endzone, he was perfect on field goals (40 and 20 yards), and averaged 37.5 yards on two punts in the game.

BRINGIN' IT: Senior outside linebacker Marc Millan (23) and defensive end Quinton Bradley (43) were solid in Thursdays game. Millan tied with three other players to lead Idaho with seven tackles on the night, including one tackle for loss. Bradley was right on his heels with six tackles including two sacks and one forced fumble.

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