Nov. 15, 2008
HUNTINGTON - Despite a 142-yard rushing performance from Darius Marshall, the Marshall offense was unable to overcome cold, sloppy weather in a 30-14 Conference USA loss to UCF on homecoming night at Joan C. Edwards Stadium.
Marshall (4-6, 3-3 C-USA) must now win its two remaining games in order to achieve its goals of a potential postseason berth.
Darius Marshall led the Thundering Herd offense with 205 all-purpose yards. The sophomore from Milledgeville, Ga. Now has a career high 883 yards rushing on the season.
Quarterback Mark Cann had just 32 yards through the air and completed 4-of-17 passes, including a 15-yard touchdown to tight end Cody Slate. Brain Anderson entered the game in the fourth quarter and completed 3-of-12 passes for 52 yards. Slate led Marshall with 46 yards receiving and recorded his fifth consecutive contest with a touchdown reception.
Defensively, the Herd was stout all night, limiting UCF to just 242 yards, including a mere 29 yards of passing. Two of UCF's touchdowns came courtesy of Herd turnovers that set up the Knights deep in Marshall's territory. Mario Harvey continued his stellar play, leading Marshall with 14 tackles.
Special teams play was the story of the game. Both teams were able to capitalize on first-and-goal situations set up by muffed punts. UCF punter Blake Clingan converted two fourth down plays, rushing for a total of 21 yards.
Marshall was down 20-7 at the half but looked to be on the verge of a comeback when Cann completed his touchdown pass to Slate. However, the UCF defense and cold weather continued to befuddle Marshall's passing game and the Knights held on for the win.
The Herd will have its final road game of the season next Saturday as it travels to Houston to face Rice at 3:30 EST. The game will be televised on CBS College Sports.