YPSILANTI, Mich. (AP) — Taylor Powell threw three touchdown passes — two of them in a pivotal third quarter — and ran for a score as Eastern Michigan rolled to a 38-19 victory over Central Michigan on Friday.
Eastern Michigan (8-4, 5-3 Mid-American Conference) posted eight wins for the first time since 1987. Chris Creighton became the first coach to post four seven-win seasons in EMU history. Creighton's Eagles have qualified for a bowl game in four straight seasons and five of the last six. EMU played in one bowl game before his arrival.
EMU, which closed out the regular season with three straight wins, will share the MAC West Division title with Toledo after Western Michigan upset the Rockets 20-14 on Friday. Toledo handed the Eagles their last loss in late October, 27-24.
Powell threw a 28-yard touchdown pass to Tanner Knue to open the scoring. Samson Evans 15-yard scoring run gave the Eagles a 14-7 lead after one quarter. Evans set an Eagles record with the 27th rushing touchdown of his career.
Freshman Bert Emanuel Jr.'s second touchdown run — a 35-yarder — pulled Central Michigan (4-8, 3-5) within 14-13 at halftime.
Powell connected with Andreas Paaske for a 9-yard score midway through the third quarter to up the Eagles lead to 21-13. Powell gave EMU a two-score lead with 21-yard touchdown pass to Dylan Drummond on the final play of the quarter. Powell scored on an 11-yard run in the fourth quarter.
Powell completed 24 of 36 passes for 266 yards for Eastern Michigan. Evans rushed 23 times for 135 yards.
Emanuel finished with 75 yards on 16 carries, scoring all three of the Chippewas' touchdowns.
The Eagles beat Western Michigan and CMU this season to take outright possession of the Michigan MAC Trophy for the first time since 2012. EMU won its only MAC championship in 1987.
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