Sophomore receiver and return specialist Tyler Snead posted 244 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns Saturday afternoon, propelling East Carolina to a 28-3 American Athletic Conference victory over Temple at Lincoln Financial Field.
The Pirates defeated the Owls for the first time since 1995 and for the first time since joining the AAC. ECU also limited a league opponent to three points for the first time since a 41-3 victory over Connecticut Oct. 29, 2016.
Freshman running back Keaton Mitchell notched his second consecutive 100-yard effort – racking up 103 yards on 13 carries. Sophomore receiver C.J. Johnson paced the squad with 86 yards and a touchdown on three receptions.
Junior quarterback Holton Ahlers completed 11-of-22 pass attempts for 182 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Ahlers did not have to do much with the rest of the team firing on all cylinders.
The ECU defense was stifling, producing season-low opponent numbers in total offense (235) and points. Conversely, the Pirate offense tallied 447 total yards (265 rushing) and the team was flagged for just one penalty.
Temple, undermanned and starting its fifth-string quarterback, they were just no match for the Pirates. Kamal Gray made his first career start at quarterback for the Owls, finishing 10-of-21 with 95 yards and two picks. Tayvon Ruley compiled 48 yards on the ground to lead Temple offensively.
Entering the game with a severely depleted roster, the Owls lost five defensive players, including four on its two-deep, due to COVID Protocol issues just prior to the start of the game. This also delayed the start of the contest by 50 minutes.
East Carolina wraps up the regular season next Saturday, Nov. 28, when it welcomes AAC opponent SMU to Greenville for a noon kickoff.
As for the Owls, they will take on #7 Cincinnati for the final game of the season on Saturday, November 28.