Andy Sneddon, CMUChippewas.com
TOLEDO, Ohio - A tale of two halves. And either way, Central Michigan couldn't match a strong Toledo team.
Logan Woodside threw four touchdown passes, all of them to Cody Thompson and all of them in the second half, as Toledo handed the Chippewas a 31-17 Mid-American Conference loss at the Glass Bowl on Saturday.
CMU, which had won two straight, slipped to 5-3, 2-2 MAC. It was the third straight win for Toledo, 6-1, 3-0.
The loss all but ended CMU's legitimate hopes of claiming the MAC West title and reaching the league championship game. They trail both the Rockets and Western Michigan by two games in the loss column.
"Mathematically, representing the West, there's a chance, but realistically it's probably not going to materialize," second-year CMU coach John Bonamego said.
The game pitted two of the MAC's most-explosive teams. The Rockets came in with an offense ranked No. 1 in the MAC and third in the country. The Chippewas were fourth in the league.
The halftime score: 3-0 Toledo.
Things opened up significantly in the second half. Woodside found Thompson for TD passes covering 16, 16, 11 and 34 yards. The first two of which upped Toledo's lead to 17-0 early in the third quarter.
The Chippewas hung in, and drew to 17-10 entering the fourth quarter when Rush scored on a 20-yard run and Brian Eavey made a 36-yard field goal.
But the Woodside-to-Thompson combination proved simply too much for the Chippewas to match.
"Our guys showed a lot of fight but in the end we made too many mistakes," Bonamego said. "We hurt ourselves with penalties, with turnovers and we weren't consistent enough stopping them in the second half, and we were consistent enough all day offensively and finishing off drives.
"They're a good football team. I think we're still a good football team. We've just got to pick up the pieces here and go back to work tomorrow."
Rush completed 18 of 31 pass attempts for 229 yards and one TD, a 4-yarder to tight end Tyler Conklin. Devon Spalding led CMU's ground game with 65 yards on 10 carries.