Finally in action, Houston rallies past Tulane
Clayton Tune threw two touchdown passes and ran for a score as Houston rallied to win its belated season opener, defeating visiting Tulane 49-31 in an American Athletic Conference game Thursday night.
The Cougars (1-0) showed the effects of four cancellations and one postponement as they fell behind 24-7 early in the second quarter and committed four first-half turnovers. Houston finished with five turnovers and no takeaways.
But Tune, whose two turnovers resulted in the Green Wave’s first two touchdowns, led the comeback by completing 20 of 33 passes for 319 yards. He was intercepted twice.
One of his touchdown tosses went to Marquez Stevenson, who had five catches for 188 yards and returned a kickoff 97 yards for a third-quarter touchdown that gave Houston the lead for good.
Freshman quarterback Michael Pratt made his first start for the Green Wave (2-2, 0-2) and struggled, completing 11 of 25 for 141 yards with one touchdown. He was sacked six times.
The Cougars took their first lead at 28-24 when Mulbah Car ran 3 yards for a touchdown that began the second-half scoring midway through the third quarter.
Pratt threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Jha’Quan Jackson on the ensuing possession to give the Green Wave a 31-28 lead.
Stevenson’s kickoff return and Kyle Porter’s 1-yard touchdown run gave Houston a 42-31 lead late in the third quarter.
Tune connected with Stevenson for a 41-yard touchdown pass that pushed the edge to 49-31 in the first minute of the fourth quarter.
The Cougars’ first possession of the season ended when Macon Clark intercepted Tune and ran 64 yards for a touchdown.
Houston evened the score on the ensuing possession when Car ran 5 yards for a touchdown.
On the Cougars’ next possession, Kevin Henry sacked Tune and caused a fumble that Jeffery Johnson recovered and returned 1 yard for a touchdown. Merek Glover kicked a 39-yard field goal that increased the Green Wave’s lead to 17-7 late in the first quarter.
Pratt boosted the advantage to 24-7 with a 1-yard touchdown run, but Tune answered with a 1-yard scoring run of his own and a 23-yard touchdown pass to Ke’Andre Street, cutting Houston’s deficit to 24-21 at halftime.
–Field Level Media