BOCA RATON, Fla. – After allowing just 18 yards in the second half, UCF football bounced back in a big way with a 40-14 win against Florida Atlantic Saturday night at FAU Stadium. The Knights defense held the Owls to zero yards in the third quarter and only allowed 18 yards in the fourth quarter.
UCF (2-1) has now won all four games in the series against Florida Atlantic (2-2), including a perfect 2-0 record at FAU Stadium.
Florida Atlantic scored on its opening drive of the game, but UCF quickly responded to knot the score at 7-7. Following consecutive passes to Ryan O'Keefe and Xavier Townsend, Knights quarterback John Rhys Plumlee called his own number and scored on a rushing play from seven yards out.
The Owls scored a second touchdown with a few seconds remaining in the first quarter, but the Knights defense held Florida Atlantic scoreless for the final three quarters.
A 41-yard field goal from freshman kicker Colton Boomer, making his collegiate debut, cut the UCF deficit to 14-10 and Plumlee scored his second rushing touchdown of the game a few minutes later to give the Knights a 16-14 lead at halftime. The Hattiesburg, Mississippi, native turned in a career performance with 121 rushing yards, a career-high 339 passing yards and 25 completions for three total touchdowns.
The second half was all UCF with the Knights compiling 327 yards of total offense and limiting Florida Atlantic to 18 total yards.
Isaiah Bowser opened the second-half scoring with a one-yard rushing touchdown, his fifth of the season. The Sidney, Ohio, native has scored a rushing touchdown in all three games this season and dating back to the bowl game last year, Bowser has seven touchdowns in his last four games.
A three-yard touchdown run from RJ Harvey pushed the Knights' lead to 30-14 on the redshirt junior running back's first career touchdown.
Boomer connected on a 29-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to finish a perfect 2-2 on field goal attempts, stretching the UCF advantage to 33-14. Javon Baker reeled in a 20-yard pass from Plumlee for the final score of the game to cap a nine-play, 69-yard drive.
UCF returns to action at home next weekend when the Knights welcome Georgia Tech for a 4 p.m. kickoff on ESPNU from FBC Mortgage Stadium.
- UCF moves to 4-0 in the all-time series against Florida Atlantic, including a 2-0 mark at FAU Stadium.
- UCF has led at halftime in all three games this season (FAU: 16-14, Louisville: 14-7, South Carolina State: 28-3).
- Alec Holler's 64-yard reception in the second quarter is the longest play of the season for the Knights. Holler is the first UCF player to surpass 100 yards receiving in a game this season. Holler's 115 yards receiving are a career best.
- Javon Baker had a career-high seven receptions for 83 yards with a touchdown.
- Isaiah Bowser has rushed for at least one touchdown in every game this season. Dating back to the bowl game last year, Bowser has seven touchdowns in his last four games.
- Johnny Richardson's 50-yard rush in the second quarter is the longest of his career.
- RJ Harvey scored his first career touchdown on a 3-yard rush in the third quarter.
- John Rhys Plumlee recorded his seventh career 100-yard rushing game and second of his career at UCF. He recorded a career high in passes completed with 25 and passing yards with 339.
- The blocked field goal by Keenan Hester was the first for the Knights since Sept. 19, 2020, at Georgia Tech when Noah Hancock blocked a field goal attempt in the second quarter.
- Lee Hunter tallied his first career sack in the third quarter.