Guthrie fumbled a punt snap with just over two minutes to play, giving Carl Albert the ball 17 yards away from tying the game. After a 1-yard run by Thompson on first down, the Titans had three incomplete passes on tightly covered plays by the Guthrie secondary, turning the ball over on downs and sealing the Bluejay victory.
“Defense wins games for you, as our guys showed tonight,” Roberts said. “Having that ‘it's never over til it's over' mentality is really gonna help us going through the rest of the season.”
Guthrie revealed the best way to keep Thompson, the Titans' star quarterback, corralled — don't let him touch the ball.
Carl Albert ran only 16 offensive plays in the second half, after Thompson had accounted for 199 yards on 15 carries alone in the first half. Thompson finished with 266 rushing yards and threw for 44, but the Bluejays came up with two crucial defensive stops in the fourth quarter on the Titans only possessions in the period.
“I can't say enough about our defense to only give up only 14 points to that offense,” coach Rafe Watkins said. “But it was a team effort. It sounds like a broken record, but it was a typical Guthrie-Carl Albert game
“Just a roller-coaster of emotions through the whole game. Our kids never panicked. They got after it, and showed the heart of a champion tonight.”