On Saturday, Oct. 28, APSU football traveled to the sunshine state for a clash with a team they in all likely hood, had no chance against. The plan would be simple, these kinds of games would be played out, a running clock would get started, the visiting team would get their check, get on the plane with cuts, bruises and a generous amount of windfall for their program. Simple.
But, it did not go like that.
APSU fought, scratched and clawed to hold their own ground in what must have been the biggest uphill battle in all of college athletics for 2017.
The Knights went ahead early, however, the Govs responded with a metaphorical punch-to-the-jaw type drive capitalized by an Ahmaad Tanner touchdown. The drive lasted for nearly seven minutes.
UCF proceeded to wipe the dust off and answer with a 91-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
Then APSU showed their heart. Down 21-7 the game reached the point where it could easily get out of hand.
Jeremiah Oatsvall found Kyran Moore on a 74-yard pass, and the drive culminated in a fumble recovery by Ryan Rockensuess for a touchdown.
As the game went on UCF continued to flex their muscles. Even when the Govs trailed 38-20 late in the first half they fought back in it. This time by a Kyran Moore 91-yard kickoff return.
Throughout the second half UCF made the unavoidable separation on the scoreboard.
Here’s the thing though, APSU battled and really gave UCF a challenge for a couple quarters. That is a big statement by a FCS team, let alone one that has won one game in its previous three seasons. The Govs offense scored the most points of any team that has played Knights this season. More than Navy, Cincinnati and Memphis.
Point is, the Govs had fight and heart in their trip to Orlando. Something that has been lacking in the team until the past couple season. Oct. 28 was a major step forward for APSU Football.