No. 15 UCF spoiled Temple’s senior day to stay perfect with a 45-19 conference road win at Lincoln Financial Field Saturday afternoon.
The Owls (5-6), 3-4 AAC) were the first to score thanks to a field goal after getting down the field on a couple of long plays, but the Knights (10-0, 6-0 AAC) quickly rebounded.
Aside from a bad first drive, UCF’s defense played well the rest of the game, making big tackles while forcing turnover after turnover. The Knights were able to snag four interceptions by four different players, while five different players recorded five tackles or more.
But the defense didn’t do all the work. Sophomore quarterback McKenzie Milton had himself a game on the ground and in the air, garnering 231 total yards and five total touchdowns.
The offense was powered by a strong combination of rushes and receptions as well, with strong receiving games being had by redshirt junior Tre’Quan Smith and freshman Marlon Williams.
Freshman receiver Otis Anderson led the ground-and-pound game for the Knights, carrying the ball five times for 58 total yards. He had two catches for 18 yards and a touchdown.
Redshirt junior Matthew Wright continued to excel on special teams, knocking down a 44 yard field goal and six PATs.
In his fourth career start, Temple’s quarterback Frank Nutile threw four interceptions, allowing redshirt sophomore Nevelle Clarke, redshirt senior Shaquem Griffin, redshirt junior Kyle Gibson and junior Pat Jasinski to snag turnovers.
Milton completed 16 of 23 passes for 208 yards and four touchdowns, contributing to the nations’ highest scoring offense.
UCF led 45-13 by the end of the third quarter, but a Temple touchdown cut the lead down to 26 points. However, a late score by the Owls didn’t bring the same result as last years’ homecoming loss at now Spectrum Stadium.
True Freshman quarterback Noah Vedral came into the game with a comfortable lead, throwing five passes and completing two for 46 yards. Both Milton and Vedral were only sacked one time, crediting the offensive line with another big game.
The defense sacked Nutile once, while breaking up six passes.
UCF will face I-4 rival USF (9-1, 6-1 AAC) for the final regular season game next Friday at Spectrum Stadium. The game will start at 3:30 p.m. and will be aired on ABC.