ORLANDO, Fla. — In its season-opening loss to Northwestern last week, Boston College couldn't come up with enough offensive firepower late in the game and it led to the Eagles coming up short on the scoreboard.
Saturday night against Central Florida, they rarely had the opportunity to get anything going as they were pounded 30-3 on their first road trip of the season.
The loss is particularly biting for the Eagles, who thought they'd figured out many of the kinks that tripped them up in Week 1. Turns out, there's still much work to do.
"We had our chances early but shot ourselves in the foot," Boston College coach Frank Spaziani said. "We weren't able to do anything on offense and they just wore us out on defense."
Following a somewhat sluggish offensive start, UCF used a trio of fourth-quarter touchdowns and three field goals from kicker Nick Cattoi to put the touches on one of its biggest wins of coach George O'Leary's tenure.
"This was a great win, all three phases complemented each other really well," O'Leary said afterward. "We shot ourselves in the foot a couple of times there in the first half, but in the second I thought we came out and did what we had to do."
The Knights defense was stingy against the Eagles throughout, holding them to just 141 total yards. Boston College was only 1-for-12 on third down as quarterback Chase Rettig was sacked three times and intercepted twice.
The Eagles were also pushed around up front, getting stopped on third- and fourth-and-short in their opening drive of the second half as they tried to cut into UCF's 9-3 first-half lead.
"We got third and a yard or third and half a yard and can't make it on two tries," Spaziani said. "You're not going to win many games if you can't do that. We had a chance and we weren't able to do what we needed to do".
UCF's Jeff Godfrey was active with both his hands and feet, completing 20 of 25 passes for 187 yards and rushing 13 times for 69 yards and two touchdowns. Latavius Murray carried 10 times for 72 yards and a score, as the Knights pounded out 422 total yards.
Rettig finished 10 of 23 passing for 70 yards. Andre Williams, who racked up 122 yards and two touchdowns last week against Northwestern, had only 59 yards on 12 carries Saturday.
The win gives the Knights their first 2-0 start since 1998 and they improve to 2-12 against Atlantic Coast Conference opponents. Boston College falls to 9-10 against Conference USA foes.
"This just goes to show we can play with anybody," Knights linebacker Josh Linam said. "We're not afraid of anybody. We welcome the challenge."
UCF clung to its 9-3 lead throughout the third quarter until Godfrey completed back-to-back passes of 17 and 28 yards in the final minute of the period to get the Knights inside the 5.
Godfrey sneaked in from 1-yard out two plays later to put the Knights up 16-3 with 14:51 left in the game.
Rettig was then picked off by A.J. Bouye on the Eagles' ensuing possession, giving the ball right back to the Knights on the Boston College 49.
UCF's offense picked up where it left off, needing only six plays to get back into the end zone — this time via a 1-yard plunge by Murray — to extend its lead to 23-3 with 9:30 left.
Murray had four carries for 38 yards during the drive, including a 19-yard scamper.
Godfrey added one more 4-yard touchdown rush to provide the final margin.
The Knights had the ball for 19:52, compared to 10:08 for the Eagles in the first half. Boston College had just four possessions in the half, punting on its final three.
"We did all right in the first half, but in the second half, they hit a couple of big plays on us, especially on third down and that really took the wind out of us," Eagles' linebacker Luke Kuechly said. "You're on the field that much and it wears on you. We had to find a way to get them off the field and couldn't do it."
UCF didn't get in the end zone, but did put its extra time to use. The Knights were aggressive from the start, mixing 13 passes into their 37 total plays for the half. The Knights also racked up 100 rushing yards, led by Godfrey's 46 yards on nine carries.
Meanwhile, Cattoi made all three of his field goals from 36, 35 and 32 yards away.
UCF's defense also kept Williams at bay in the opening 30 minutes. His first touch of the night went for 16 yards, but his final seven carries of the half netted just 27 yards.
Boston College did get few big plays, but managed only four first downs and 41 rushing yards. Rettig was also a paltry 3 for 8 for 27 yards through the air. He was also sacked twice deep in Eagles' territory to set up a Knights' score.
The Eagles' biggest bright spot of the half came on the defensive side, with Kuechly posting 10 tackles.
UCF goes on the road next week against Florida International, which also improved to 2-0 Friday with a 24-17 over Louisville. Boston College returns home to open ACC play against Duke.
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