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No. 20 Central Florida hands Navy second straight loss

Oct 21, 2017 08:55PM ● By Jake Russell
By Jake Russell

Looking to get back on the winning track after a tough loss in Memphis a week ago, the Navy Midshipmen faced a tall task against a high-powered Central Florida squad. Losing quarterback Zach Abey to an injury in the third quarter after sustaining a helmet-to-helmet hit didn't make matters much easier.

The No. 20 UCF Knights averaged 50.6 points per game heading into Saturday's showdown in Annapolis but the Midshipmen defense held the Knights to a season-low 31 points. That wasn't enough.

Before his injury, Abey ran for 100 yards for the eighth straight game, setting a school record. After his injury, junior Garret Lewis took over the offense, running it respectably but not providing the offensive firepower needed to go toe-to-toe with the Knights.

The Midshipmen cut the Knights lead to 24-21 with a seven-yard touchdown run from
Anthony Gargiulo early in the fourth quarter but a 10-yard touchdown run by Otis Anderson with 3:30 remaining put UCF up 31-21, which was too much for the blue and gold to overcome.

UCF is now 6-0 for the first time in program history while the Mids fall to 5-2.

Since joining the American Athletic Conference in 2015, Navy has taken the league by storm, accumulating a 17-2 conference record in their first 19 conference games. Now they've dropped their last two AAC matchups.

The Midshipmen have a week off before taking on Temple on Thursday, November 2 at 8 p.m. on ESPN. They return to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on Saturday, November 11 at 3:30 p.m. in their regular season home finale against SMU.