UCF Loses 30-28 Heartbreaker To Northern Illinois

GO KNIGHTS Dontavius Wilcox scored two touchdowns vs. Northern Illinois.
Dontavius Wilcox scored two touchdowns vs. Northern Illinois.

Oct. 27, 2004

Box Score |  Notes

ORLANDO - Northern Illinois kicker Chris Nendick kicked a 39-yard field goal with no time remaining to lift the Huskies to a 30-28 victory over UCF Saturday evening at the Florida Citrus Bowl. The Golden Knights ripped off 21 points in the fourth quarter to take their first lead of the night at 28-27 with 45 seconds remaining in the game before NIU drove 44 yards for the game-winning field goal.

With the loss, UCF dropped to 0-5 overall and 0-2 in the MAC while NIU improved to 4-2 and 3-0 in the MAC.

Northern Illinois jumped out to an early 14-0 lead after one quarter of play. NIU scored on its first drive of the game as Garrett Wolfe scored on a five-yard run to give the Huskies a 7-0 lead.

On their next possession, NIU scored its second touchdown of the night as quarterback Josh Haldi found Shatone Powers on a 10-yard scoring play. The touchdown gave Northern Illinois a 14-0 lead with 3:29 remaining in the quarter.

The Golden Knights looked to close out the first half with some momentum after junior safety Rashad Mays picked off his first career pass and returned it to the Northern Illinois 43-yard line. Just three plays later, NIU dealt the Golden Knights a tough blow when Ray Smith returned an interception 68 yards with 12 seconds to play in the first half to give Northern Illinois a 21-0 lead going into the break.

UCF got back into the game on one play in the third quarter when Steven Moffett hit Tavaris Capers on a 67-yard touchdown pass to close the deficit to 21-7. The pass play was the longest of Moffett's career and it also marked the longest reception of Capers' career.

Northern Illinois answered UCF's score on its next possession when Chris Nendick connected on a 24-yard field goal to extend the NIU lead to 24-7 with 3:56 remaining in the third quarter.

UCF used its third interception of the night for seven points when Travonti Johnson returned an interception 18 yards for a touchdown to close the gap to 24-14. The interception was Johnson's first of his career and marked the first time since 2001 that UCF returned an interception for a touchdown.



Nendick tallied his second field goal of the game from 28 yards out to extend the lead to 27-14 with 10:28 left in the game.

The Knights answered the score with a 14-yard touchdown pass from Moffett to Dontavius Wilcox. UCF forced a three and out and drove down the field and took a 28-27 lead with a three yard scamper by Wilcox with just 45 seconds remaining.

Northern Illinois drove down to the 22-yard line to attempt a game winning field goal as Nendick kicked his third field goal of the game, a 39-yarder as time expired to give the Huskies a 30-28 win.

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