Peter Holland Jr. // Assistant Sports Director
The Panthers ended their game against in-state rival University of Central Florida without a win after defense gave up 501 total yards and six rushing touchdowns, resulting in a final score of 53-14.
Defense couldn’t keep up with UCF’s fast tempo, no-huddle offense. The Golden Knights put up 45 unanswered points prior to FIU scoring early in the fourth quarter. UCF was led by its running back Dontravious Wilson, who scored three touchdowns. When the second string offense came onto the field late in the third quarter, the Knights put 21 points to seal their victory. Both quarterbacks, McKenzie Milton, starter, and Nick Patti, backup, threw for 225 yards combined.
“It’s football. It can take a whole lot out of you,” said starting linebacker Anthony Wint. “That’s completely on us. If you want to get off the field, you have to create turnovers and stop them and create opportunities for the offense.”
Maurice Alexander made his first career start at quarterback after head coach Ron Turner benched Alex McGough. Alexander struggled to get the offense going, finishing the night 6-14 for 41 yards and one interception.
“It was his first start and he played like he hasn’t played a whole lot of football,” said Turner.
McGough stepped in later in the third quarter and threw a 17-yard pass to wide receiver Stanley Thomas early in the fourth quarter. Both quarterbacks combined for 11-23, 109 yards and one touchdown.
The Panthers are currently 0-4 this season. Their first C-USA game will be against Florida Atlantic University at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 1 at FIU Stadium.