TU slays the Knights

TUvsUCF1TULSA, OK—The TU Golden Hurricane (5-4) returned home on Saturday afternoon following a 40-31 win over SMU last weekend.  With the win over the Mustangs, the Golden Hurricane doubled the win total from 2014, pulling even for the season at 4-4 (1-3 American).  The University of Central Florida Knights (0-10) came into the game winless in both their conference schedule and their non-conference schedule through nine games.

The Golden Hurricane roared out to a 24-3 lead by halftime and nearly let it slip away after allowing the Knights back into the game when they scored 17-points off of turnovers in the third quarter.  The offense returned to form in the final 15 minutes and scored three times in seven minutes to give the home team a 45-30 win in front of 16,128 in Chapman Stadium.

TUvsUCF3The stars of the game for the Golden Hurricane hands down were Connor Floyd, Michael Mudoh, and a three touchdown effort by rookie red-shirter Ramadi Warren.

Ramadi Warren began his touchdown onslaught in the second quarter when he trotted five yards into the end zone to score the Golden Hurricane’s third touchdown of the game in the second quarter.  He followed that with two TD runs in the fourth quarter, the first a one yard jaunt to take the lead early on in the fourth quarter, and a two yarder to solidify the lead six minutes later.

Warren ended the day with the three touchdowns, and a game high 168 yards on 19 carries.

TUvsUCF2Quarterback Dane Evans connected twice with senior receiver Floyd for a pair of touchdowns, one of them a 36 yarder on TU’s first possession of the game and the other a 12-yard strike to end the opening frame.

Mudoh capped the dominant TU performance with an 86-yard interception return at the 3:31 mark of the fourth quarter.  Mudoh capped a defensive effort that included four turnovers, and held UCF to just over 100 yards rushing (109).   Mudoh had his 20th career double-figure tackle game with 13 stops and his first interception of the season, which he returned for an 86yard TD and the school’s second-longest interception return in school history.

TUvsUCF4TU’s performance was dominating, but it almost evaporated in the third quarter when three turnovers resulted in points and the Knights found a glimmer of hope. They capitalized on a fumble and two picks to narrow the lead to just four points in the 3rd before the Hurricane offense reignited in the fourth.

Hurricane head coach Philip Montgomery was pleased with his teams’ 5th win this season.

“I thought we really played a complete game.” Coach Montgomery began,” Obviously in the third quarter we got three basically back-to-back turnovers, put our defense in a bad bind, really allowed them to get back into the game right there.

“I loved the competitiveness and the battle that our guys put up. They continued to fight, got momentum back. Put together a good drive running of the football.”

TUvsUCF5From here the Golden Hurricane hit the road for Cincinnati, where they will take on the Bearcats next Saturday at 6:30 pm and the game is slated to air on ESPNNews.  The next home game is two weeks from Saturday when they will take on Navy in Chapman Stadium.

 

Photos by Les Stockton, Tulsa Today.