Feb. 27, 2014
UCF Athletics Social Media Directory
By Brian Ormiston
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) - ABC. Sold-out crowd. 3-0 record. George O'Leary vs. Steve Spurrier. So many storylines were in place for UCF's meeting with South Carolina at Bright House Networks Stadium.
And just like the Knights' previous contest at Penn State, UCF came out running on all cylinders on the first drive with Blake Bortles going 5-for-6 for 51 yards and Storm Johnson capping it off with a 1-yard touchdown rush for a 7-0 lead.
UCF would build a 10-0 lead through the first half, with the Gamecocks starting quarterback Connor Shaw leaving early due to an injury when he lost a fumble in the first quarter. Backup Dylan Thompson went 9-for-22 with an interception in the opening 30 minutes.
The visitors quickly erased their zero from the scoreboard in the second half, though, scoring 28-unanswered points for a 28-10 cushion. With 10:27 remaining in the game, it took just 39 seconds for UCF to start its comeback as Bortles hit Rannell Hall for a 73-yard touchdown, and then J.J. Worton for the 2-point conversion.
South Carolina appeared it would put the game to rest, driving to the UCF-3 only to have Michael Easton jar the ball loose from Mike Davis' hands and the Knights recovered with 3:18 left. Another highlight-reel pass play, this time to Breshad Perriman, went for 79 yards and Bortles hooked up with Hall for seven yards to complete the drive and make it 28-25.
Needing to recover the on-side kick, UCF could not get the offense back on the field. The only thing that halted the Knights' momentum was the clock.
Final score: South Carolina 28, UCF 25
UCF's record: 3-1 Overall, 0-0 American
2014 Football Season Tickets: The March to Victory starts with UCF fans. Renew or order season tickets, starting at $99, today online or call 407-UCF-1000. And to learn about the Croke Park Classic against Penn State Aug. 30 in Dublin, Ireland, check out UCF.CrokeParkClassic.com.