The demons have been lifted as the Pirates have gotten rid of the goose-egg in their conference wins column as they held on late to beat the Connecticut Huskies 31-24 on Saturday. The Pirates blew a 10-point 4th quarter lead before QB Holton Ahlers ran for a score with 3:28 remaining to put the Pirates up for good. The game was sealed with a Colby Gore interception on 4th-and-goal from the ECU 5 yard line with 8 seconds remaining.
The Pirates did almost everything to lose this game and have UConn end their 17-game American Conference losing streak. However, the team found a way to win. This marks another significant step in the Mike Houston Era as they finally won a game late and made “winning” plays to seal the deal.
The victory marks the Pirates' fourth of the season leading to end the streak of 3 consecutive seasons of only 3 wins.
Uconn showed a lot of fight on their senior day by tying up the game with 9:28 remaining when Jack Zergiotis hooked up with Cameron Ross for a 94-yard touchdown pass. Zergiotis finished 21-37 for 418 yards with three TD passes and two INTs.
Ahlers finished 34-50 for 374 yards and a score with two INTs. The rest of the offense was humming as well with Darius Pinnix Jr. rushing for 105 yards, two TDs on 27 carries as well as Tyler Snead finishing with 16 catches for 126 yards.
UConn has nothing to lay their heads down for especially in a season of blowouts, the squad had a rare opportunity for a conference victory but could not make the final play at the end to extend the game or potentially win it.
In a battle of the bottom two, it turned into what not many saw coming as it was a thriller going down to the final play of the game. The Pirates have played some nail-biters in recent weeks and this week they were able to make that one extra play to secure a much-needed victory.
Both teams have one game left on their schedules as the Pirates have their senior day next Saturday against Tulsa.
As for the Huskies, they will be traveling down to Philadelphia to play Temple.