Richards' Game-Winning Touchdown Leads Knights Past ECU

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ORLANDO - Mark-Antony Richards pushed ahead for one yard with 23 seconds left in the game. It was the one yard he needed to lift the UCF football team (3-2, 1-1 AAC) to a 20-16 home victory over visiting East Carolina (3-3, 1-1 AAC) Saturday evening at the Bounce House.

Richards, who had only four rushes on the season heading into Saturday's contest, rushed four consecutive times for 27 yards on the Knights' final drive of the game, including the final one-yard score to give UCF its first American Athletic Conference victory of the season.

He also came up big on a 4th-and-8 play just two snaps before the four rushes, catching a pass from quarterback Mikey Keene that went 12 yards to gain the clutch first down and keep the drive alive.

Richards finished with six rushes for 58 yards and the score, while Keene went 23-of-35 for 194 yards through the air - all career highs - and led the Knights on the game-winning drive in just his second-career start.

The Knights defense kept the team in it most of the way, holding ECU to just three first-half points and securing three turnovers on the night.


  • Although Richards scored the game-winner, Johnny Richardson had an even more impressive day in his first-career start at running back. Richardson rushed 16 times for 104 yards and a touchdown, all marks that either set or matched his career high.
  • Richardson also caught two passes for 51 yards, including a career-long 49 yard reception.
  • His 38 yard rush was also a career long for the sophomore.
  • Richardson finished with 155 yards rushing and receiving to help lead the UCF offense.


  • UCF held ECU to just three points at halftime, the lowest point total in a half for a UCF opponent since Nov. 14, 2020 against Temple.
  • The Knights got two fumble recoveries, one for Josh Celiscar and one for Quadric Bullard.
  • Anthony Montalvo and Cam Goode forced the fumbles, the third in the last two games for Goode.
  • Jeremiah Jean-Baptiste recorded his first-career interception.
  • The Knights got multiple sacks for the first time this season (Celiscar, Big Kat Bryant, Keenan Hester, Kalia Davis).


"I'm really proud of the guys. It's a big win for us and much needed. You get to a point where the guys refuse to lose. We had two tough, close losses and now we found a way to win. That will really help us moving forward."


"This boosts our confidence. Coach preaches outlasting adversity and overcoming adversity and that's what we did. It's huge for our confidence."


UCF Knights · 2021 UCF Football vs. ECU - Highlights