South Carolina Gamecocks Beat UCF Behind Big Second Half


The South Carolina Gamecocks got a much needed win on Saturday afternoon at Williams-Brice Stadium over the UCF Knights. Lorenzo Nunez got his first career start and probably quieted most of the fans that were left who did not think he was ready to start.

The Gamecocks opened the game with a drive down to the UCF 34 yard line resulting in a 52 yard field goal by Fry. The Gamecock defense followed that up by forcing the first punt in a first half this season on UCF’s opening drive. Boosie Whitlow stoped a run in the backfield for a safety that gave the Gamecocks a 5-0 lead early in the second quarter.

Then things got worse. Central Florida recovered a fumbled punt by Pharoh Cooper on the 1 yard line and ran for a touchdown on the very next play. With UCF up by 2, the Knights marched 93 yards down the field on their next possession for another touchdown. They would go into the half with a shocking 14-8 lead.

The Gamecocks recovered in the second half behind a strong showing from Nunez and Pharoh Cooper and great defensive plays from TJ Holloman. On a bit of a trick play, Nunez threw the ball out to Cooper behind the line of scrimmage. Cooper looked down field for a receiver but no one was open as defenders closed in on him. Somehow, Cooper escaped the defenders on a Sports Center highlight run to give the Gamecocks the lead.

Holloman followed that up with some Sports Center magic of his own on a tough interception. Nunez threw his first collegiate touchdown to Jacob August, which happened to be August’s first collegiate touchdown catch on the next Gamecock drive.

Holloman intercepted another pass on the next UCF possession. Nunez hooked up with Cooper on the next drive for his second touchdown pass of the day giving the Gamecocks a 28-14 lead after a botched extra point attempt.

The Gamecocks would close out the game winning 31-14 to bring their record back to .500 for the season.

Nunez finished the game 12 of 22 passing for 184 yards and 2 touchdowns. He added 123 yards on the ground on 18 carries. Pharoh Cooper had 3 runs for 27 yards and a touchdown and 4 receptions for 69 yards and a touchdown.

The Gamecocks head to Columbia, Missouri next weekend to take on the Tigers. Kick-off is at noon.

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