ouisville beats UCF in 42-35 thriller: Live updates, highlights.
Louisville football will play Central Florida in an ESPN-televised matchup at Cardinal Stadium on Friday night.
The Cardinals (1-1) began the season with a home victory against Eastern Kentucky and a defeat to Ole Miss in Atlanta. With a win against UCF, they’ll be able to start ACC play above.500.
The Cardinals’ mediocre offense will have to improve its third-down efficiency while assaulting the Knights with a combination of rushing and throwing. The latter will be difficult since UCF has only allowed 22 running yards a game this season.
In the 7:30 p.m. match, there’s also a hanging carrot. A victory will likely propel UCF from the Associated Press Top 25’s “Others Receiving Votes” section to a spot among the rankings.
Follow Courier Journal beat reporter Cameron Teague Robinson on Twitter and join us here as the game develops to find out what’s going on at Cardinal Stadium.
Final: Louisville 42, UCF 35.
After the game, Louisville coach Scott Satterfield told ESPN, “The kids never stopped.”
The Cardinals (2-1) prevailed in a nail-biter, handing UCF (2-1) its first defeat of the season.
Malik Cunningham threw for 265 yards, a touchdown, and an interception on 23-of-38 passing. He ran for 99 yards and two scores on 13 carries.
Marshon Ford had a 100-yard reception and a score on eight receptions. Jalen Mitchell rushed for 74 yards and a score on 16 attempts.
Dillon Gabriel of UCF completed 21 of 28 passes for 188 yards, three touchdowns, and one interception. He ran for 18 yards and another score on ten carries.
:13 4Q, Louisville 42, UCF 35
SELECT SIX. Jaylin Alderman scored the game-winning touchdown after returning an interception 66 yards. Pandemonium.
Alderman, a 6-foot-1 linebacker from Valdosta, Georgia, is a freshman. That performance will be remembered for a lifetime.
:25 4Q, UCF interception
Tre’mon Morris Brash of UCF deflected and intercepted Malik Cunningham’s pass. On the Louisville 41-yard line, the Knights took control.
:43, 4Q: Play under review
After Louisville’s snap, the official blew his whistle. This was followed by a review. Although Marshon Ford’s 13-yard reception was contested, the on-field decision – that it was a clean catch – stood, and U of L was awarded a fresh set of downs. Ford also set a new career-best with his ninth reception in a game.
1:21, 4Q: Louisville 35, UCF 35
Dillon Gabriel scored on a 6-yard run. A sixth tie was achieved by Daniel Obarski’s PAT. What a spectacle. What other gimmicks does U of L have in its sleeve?
Here we go.
Malik Cunningham hobbled off the field with cramping as Louisville punted with 3:46 remaining. Cunningham had a fantastic night, scoring two touchdowns on the ground and one on the throw.
As the Knights began their drive on their own 13-yard line, quarterback Dillon Gabriel took over. UCF got an automatic first down thanks to a Monty Montgomery facemask.
Soon after, Johnny Richardson extended the drive with a 19-yard run.
9:15, 4Q: Louisville 35, UCF 28
Despite seeming to be suffering from cramping, Cardinals quarterback Malik Cunningham led a crucial touchdown drive that culminated in a trick play and a huge reward. Cunningham connected with Braden Smith, who threw a 45-yard touchdown pass to Trevion Cooley, and James Turner’s PAT sealed the deal for a seven-point advantage.
Louisville’s fake punt was thwarted.
During a drive that ended with a fake punt, Jalen Mitchell got treatment on the sideline. With 12:29 remaining in the fourth quarter, UCF thwarted the Cards’ attempt at a trick play. The Knights took over on the Louisville 49 after U of L was stopped short of the first down.
Mitchell, who had 15 rushes for 74 yards and a touchdown to that point, left the field but returned to play later in the quarter.
14:25, 4Q: Louisville 28, UCF 28
In the fourth quarter, UCF just needed a few minutes to finish their drive with a touchdown. Dillon Gabriel connected with Brandon Johnson on a 6-yard touchdown throw, and Daniel Obarski added another PAT to his hat trick. Tied for fourth place
End of 3Q: Louisville 28, UCF 21
UCF has the ball on the Cardinals’ 13-yard line heading into the fourth quarter.
With 1:47 remaining in the third quarter, Qwynnterrio Cole of the University of Louisiana intercepted a deep throw from Dillon Gabriel to Kaedin Robinson, saving a score. UCF was forced to punt.
Prior to Cole’s deflection, Yasir Abdulla sacked Gabriel for a 7-yard loss, adding to the defensive pressure.
4:57, 3Q: Louisville 28, UCF 21
The Cardinals’ offense continued to outsmart UCF’s defense, as they produced huge plays and took advantage of mismatch chances to pull ahead once again.
On Malik Cunningham’s throw to Jordan Watkins, the Cards quickly gained 22 yards from their own 35-yard line. The home side scored another touchdown thanks to a combination of Jalen Mitchell runs and Cunningham throws, including a stunning 25-yarder to Marshon Ford.
Cunningham scored on a 1-yard run, and James Turner added the extra point.
10:59, 3Q: UCF 21, Louisville 21
The third tie of the night may be attributed to UCF’s innovative play-calling. Gabriel’s 11-yard run was aided by Dillon Gabriel’s throw to Ryan O’Keefe and O’Keefe’s pass back to the quarterback. As the Knights completed the trick play, U of L’s defense was taken off guard. The drive took 4:01 to complete and included nine plays for 65 yards.
Kei’Trel Clark is back in action
The University of Louisiana cornerback returned in the third quarter after seeming to be injured in the second quarter. (Note from the future: With approximately nine minutes remaining in the third quarter, Clark makes a huge stop on quarterback Dillon Gabriel.)
1986 men’s hoops team honored
Halftime recognized Louisville’s 1986 NCAA Tournament title squad, with former coach Denny Crum receiving a standing ovation.
Former Cardinals players will sign autographs for fans at Louisville Live at Churchill Downs on Saturday before current Cardinals players make their debut.
Mike Abram, Herbert Crook, Jeff Hall, Tony Kimbro, Will Olliges, David Robinson, Billy Thompson, Robbie Valentine, Milt Wagner, Kevin Walls, Chris West, and Keith Williams are among the players anticipated to attend.
Halftime: Louisville 21, UCF 14
Do you have any offensive issues? What are your offensive issues? UCF has 44 rushing yards and 121 passing yards, while the Cardinals have 126 rushing yards and 148 passing yards.
Malik Cunningham has a 148-yard throwing yardage and a score on 14-of-20 passing. The quarterback for the University of Louisiana has also run nine times for 74 yards and a score.
Jalen Mitchell has 58 yards on 12 runs and a touchdown. Marshon Ford has a touchdown and four catches for 39 yards.
Dillon Gabriel, the quarterback for UCF, is 12-for-15 throwing for 121 yards and two touchdowns. His favourite target has been Ryan O’Keefe. He has two 45-yard catches and a score.
:22, 2Q: Louisville 21, UCF 14
Malik Cunningham’s 28-yard pass to Marshon Ford began Louisville’s last first-half drive. Jalen Mitchell had a one-yard run after a 14-yard throw to Justin Marshall.
With 27 seconds remaining, Marshall came up just short of the goal line with a second reception. On the following play, he grabbed a 1-yard touchdown pass for U of L’s first lead of the night.
The drive took 1:51 and covered 56 yards on six plays. The PAT by James Turner extended the advantage to seven.
Kei’Trel Clark injured on tackle
Cardinals standout defensive back Kei’Trel Clark sustained an injury going for a big hit later in the second quarter. He went to the injury tent but emerged on the sideline.
9:38 2Q: Tied again, this time at 14
Jalen Mitchell was a juggernaut on his way to the Cards’ second score, which came after a seven-play, 75-yard drive. It lasted 4:44 and concluded with a PAT by James Turner.
Mitchell has so far had one catch for 27 yards (on this drive) and 11 carries for 57 yards. Malik Cunningham has 73 yards throwing on 7-of-12 passing and 75 yards rushing on eight attempts.
14:22, 2Q: UCF 14, Louisville 7
There are nine plays in all. The distance is 52 yards. A magnificent one-handed catch. The Knights evaded the Cardinals with a second touchdown throw on fourth-and-short.
Dillon Gabriel connected with Jaylon Robinson on a highlight-reel 15-yard throw.
UCF went up 14-7 on a field goal by Daniel Obarski.
Tied at 7 after one quarter
Louisville amassed 135 yards in the first quarter, a promising performance for a team whose offense has been anemic in its first two games. The Cards’ deadlock, however, was short-lived.
1:47, 1Q: Louisville ties score with TD
The Knights punted at the 6:45 mark after Jake Hescock’s false start, giving the Cardinals the ball on the Louisville 6. Malik Cunningham enters the picture.
Cunningham scored on a 7-yard run to complete an energising and long drive.
Gus Malzahn, the coach of the University of Central Florida, stated on ESPN that he recruited the three-year Cardinals starter out of high school and called him a “exceptional quarterback.” Of course, Malzahn was at Auburn at the time Cunningham was attracting college interest.
On a 27-yard run, Jalen Mitchell extended the 10-play, 94-yard drive. At 7-all, James Turner’s PAT tied the game.
Welcome back, Angel McCoughtry and Montrezl Harrell
Montrezl Harrell, a former Louisville men’s basketball player, and Angel McCoughtry, a former Louisville women’s basketball player, were both seen at the game. For Saturday’s Louisville Live at Churchill Downs, Harrell hinted at a return to campus. Maria Taylor, an NBC Sports announcer, is among them.
Coach Jeff Walz of the University of Louisville’s women’s basketball team got the opportunity to speak with McCoughtry and Taylor.
12:22, 1Q: UCF 7, Louisville 0
That was a fast response. After Louisville turned the ball over, the Knights needed just 13 seconds to score on their opening possession. On fourth-and-one on their own 44-yard line, the Cardinals went for it but fell short, losing the ball on downs.
Two plays later, UCF quarterback Dillon Gabriel connected with Ryan O’Keefe for a 41-yard touchdown throw. Daniel Obarski’s PAT gave the team an early lead with a PAT.
Gabriel has six throwing touchdowns in his first two games with the Knights.