Tampa Bay Sports Day

UCF: Knights Defeat Navy 31-21; Forces Three Turnovers

The UCF football team was tested for the first time this season on Saturday at Navy.

The No. 20/20 Knights showed their toughness and grit in a 31-21 road victory to improve to 6-0 for the first time in program history.

“When you get in a close game, you really need some heart. You need to play together. You need to have guys who will make plays when the game is on the line. I thought we had some guys step up at very important times,” said UCF coach Scott Frost.

The Midshipmen (5-2, 3-2) came into the game leading the nation with 397.5 rushing yards per game, but the Knights’ defense slowed down the Navy offense to 248 yards on the ground.

UCF gave up a handful big plays, but came up big to force three turnovers. Late in the second quarter when

Navy had the ball in UCF territory, Kyle Gibson picked off Zach Abey’s pass at the two-yard line. Later in the fourth quarter and up by three with 7:07 to play, Brandon Moore halted a Midshipmen drive with a punishing hit to jar the ball loose.

While the defense was relentless against the Navy triple-option, the Knights racked up 483 yards of offense, including 247 on the ground.

Adrian Killins, Jr. rushed for 122 yards and two touchdowns. Otis Anderson sealed the win with a late 10-yard rushing touchdown to go along with his career-high 56 yards on the ground.

After Navy tied the game up at 14-14 in the third quarter, Killins responded with a 79-yard touchdown run on the first play of the drive. Killins set a new career high for yards rushing, besting his 115 against Memphis earlier this season. The sophomore also added a 15-yard scamper up the middle in the second quarter. He now has five rushing touchdowns this season.

Brandon Moore, nicknamed Bam, came up big with a forced fumble, fumble recovery and an interception, all career firsts. The redshirt freshman tallied a pair of tackles in the win. Moore also chipped in on Gibson’s interception, tipping the ball away from a Navy receiver and into his fellow defensive back’s hands.

The Knights return to Spectrum Stadium next Saturday to face Austin Peay. Kickoff is set for 5 p.m. on ESPN3.