UCF Knights Down 13, Score 21 Unanswered Points, Earn Big Conference Road Win At UConn
By UCF Knights Sports // October 23, 2016
fresh. QB Milton passes for career high 317 yards
ABOVE VIDEO: UCF Football led by freshman QB McKenzie Milton’s career high 317 passing yards take down the UConn Huskies 24-16. The Knights improve to 2-1 in the conference.
(UCF FOOTBALL) – UCF spotted UConn 13 points to open the game, then outscored the Huskies 24-3 to take a 24-16 American Athletic Conference victory Saturday at Rentschler Field.
True freshman quarterback McKenzie Milton passed for three touchdowns. He completed 29-of-45 passes for 317 yards to lead the offense. The defense held on late, protecting the eight-point lead to preserve the victory.
“It’s definitely a great feeling, especially after a loss like last week,” Milton said. “We were hungry to get back out here. It’s a great road win.”
Head coach Scott Frost was pleased with the way his team responded after falling behind early Saturday.
“This team has character,” Frost said. “We talked about that all week. We’ve been so close a couple times. As we talked about, sooner or later, things are going to go our way and we’re going to find a way to get it done in the end. Our kids battled through a lot.”
UConn led 6-0 after the first quarter, as the Knight defense stymied the Huskies deep in UCF territory twice to force field goals. UConn finally broke through with 9:41 left in the first half when Arkeel Newsome scored from three yards out to make it 13-0.
The Knights responded to that touchdown with a 93-yard scoring drive. Two true freshmen hooked up for the first UCF score of the day as Dredrick Snelson hauled in a 22-yard reception from McKenzie Milton to make it 13-7. UConn extended its lead to 16-7 late in the first half with a field goal at the 1:25 mark.
ABOVE VIDEO: Hear what the Knights and Scott Frost had to say after their 24-16 win against the UConn Huskies.
Milton and the Knights answered. A personal foul against UConn helped, but the Knights drove 75 yards in nine plays. With one second left in the first half, Milton found tight end Jordan Akins on a 19-yard touchdown pass. The Matthew Wright PAT pulled UCF within two, 16-14, at the intermission.
“Any time you can get momentum going into halftime, it’s big,” Milton said.
“As it turned out, that was a big deal,” Frost said. “We were going to run one more play at the end and kick a field goal. We tried to dial one up for Jordan Akins, who we believe in a lot and he went up and made a fantastic play.”
The Knights took the opening possession of the second half 75 yards, capped by a Milton-to-Adrian Killins 39-yard touchdown pass, putting UCF on top for the first time in the contest. Less than one minute into the fourth quarter, Wright hit a career-long 50-yard field goal to put the Knights on top 24-16.
McKenzie Milton passed for a career-high 317 yards and three touchdowns.
One of his 29 passes completed actually went to himself. In the second quarter, he broke the pocket and looked to complete a pass. It bounced off a defender and right back to Milton.
Including himself, Milton completed passes to 10 different receivers.
His passing total was the most yards passing for a quarterback in nearly two years. It was the most since Justin Holman threw for 336 vs. Temple on Oct. 25, 2014.
Shaquem Griffin was featured, along with his brother Shaquill, on ESPN College GameDay this morning prior to the game.
If anyone was watching Shaquem more closely after hearing his story, he didn’t disappoint. He tallied a game-high 10 tackles, including a half tackle for-loss.
Meanwhile, Shaquill added four stops and another pass breakup, giving him a team-leading eight passes broken up on the season.
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