Oct. 9, 2011
Denton, TX -The Florida Atlantic University football team dropped its fifth consecutive road game to begin the season with a 31-17 loss to the University of North Texas on Saturday night. FAU (0-5, 0-2 SBC) will open its new on-campus stadium next Saturday at 4 p.m. against Western Kentucky University.
The Owls trailed 31-3 going into the fourth quarter before scoring 14 points on offensive drives led by redshirt junior quarterback David Kooi. Vinny Zaccario added a field goal in the third quarter to complete the Owls 17-point second-half effort.
Entering the game at the beginning of the fourth quarter, Kooi led FAU to two touchdowns to draw the Owls within 14 points. Redshirt senior running back Alfred Morris scampered from 28-yards for the first touchdown of the evening. After the defense recovered a fumble, Kooi found redshirt senior tight end Darian Williams in the end zone from six yards. The touchdown pass was the first of Kooi’s career and drew the Owls to 31-17 with 8:50 remaining.
North Texas (2-4, 1-1) broke the game open with 28 points in a four-minute span in the third quarter. UNT kick Zach Olen connected on a 52-yard field goal at the 11:47 mark to give the host a 10-0 advantage. The Mean Green defense became opportunistic, intercepting redshirt junior quarterback Graham Wilbert on FAU’s next three possessions. North Texas’ Lance Dunbar capped a scoring drive on a two-yard run with 8:56 remaining for a 17-0 cushion. The Mean Green later returned interceptions for touchdowns on consecutive plays to build a 31-0 lead midway through the third quarter.
Individually, Morris recorded his first 100-yard rushing game of the season. He had 162 yards on 23 carries and a score. Morris also had a game-high 51 yards receiving on three receptions.
Kooi finished the evening 6-of-9 for 70 yards while Wilbert completed 10 passes for 95 yards. Redshirt sophomore wide out DeAndre Richardson had a game-high five receptions for 31 yards while redshirt freshman wide receiver Marcus Cunningham and Williams each had three catches.
On defense, redshirt sophomore linebacker Randell Johnson led the Owls with 11 tackles and one sack.
Next week will be FAU’s first home game of the season and first game in the brand new 30,000 seat on-campus stadium. The Owls will take on Western Kentucky in a Sun Belt Conference game.
- Cornerback Christian Milstead made his first career start in place of Treon Howard who was out with a stomach bug.
- Mickey Groody’s 63-yard punt is his longest of the season
- Center Jordan Sessa made his first career start
- Running back Willie Floyd returned a career-long 65 yard kickoff
- Running back Alfred Morris rushed for a season-best 162 yards against the Mean Green. FAU is 7-5 all-time when he passes the century mark.
- Senior cornerback Curtis Cross had his first fumble recovery
- Quarterback David Kooi had his first career touchdown pass
- FAU has scored 68 points on the year. Thirty-six have come in the fourth quarter, all 36 points have come in the last three games