Published On: Tue, Nov 7th, 2017

FAU Football Wins Five Straight, Now Bowl Eligible

By: Michael Demyan

Photo by FAU Athletics

The Florida Atlantic University Owls extended their winning streak to five with their first ever win against Marshall Friday night.

The 30-25 win narrowly gave them their sixth of the season, making them bowl eligible for the first time since 2013. They are also still on top of the Conference USA standings with an undefeated 5-0 record against fellow C-USA teams.

The win did not come without a late scare for the Owls however, as a miscalculation of the clock resulted in FAU having to take a safety in the final seconds.

“We were off on our chart upstairs by like 12 or 14 seconds,” head coach Lane Kiffin said. “From upstairs we were being told, ‘Okay, three knees and it’s over.’ I kept saying, ‘Guys, I ain’t real good at math, but that ain’t looking like it’s going to be over.”

The safety resulted in Marshall pulling to within five points of the lead. FAU punted the ball, which was ultimately the final play of the game as Marshall’s lateral-filled running finally ended on a forward pass after the clock expired.

“It ended up being seven seconds off or eight seconds off after what happened, so that last kickoff was scary,” Kiffin said. “Luckily, we grabbed James Pierre and said ‘Hey, you just stay back here.’ All I could picture was the Tennessee Titans throwback on a last play like that.”

The Owls did hold the lead for most of the game as they got on the board during their first drive. Quarterback Jason Driskel ran the ball two yards into the endzone on their 16th play.

Marshall’s first possession was cut short by Jalen Young’s first of three interceptions, which tied the program record, leading to a 19-yard run by Willie Wright to bring the score to 13-0. Kicker Greg Joseph missed the extra point.

With just over seven minutes left in the second quarter, Marshall got on the board with a Kaare Vedvik field goal, but FAU bounced back with one of their own to bring it back to a 13-point lead.

Marshall started out strong in the second half with a 59-yard pass on their fifth play of the drive. Quarterback Chase Litton followed up with a five-yard pass to Ryan Yurachek for the touchdown. They continued their push with another touchdown with 7:27 remaining in the third, but a missed extra point kept the game tied at 16.

Back-to-back touchdowns from FAU’s Devin Singletary gave the Owls (6-3, 5-0 C-USA) a comfortable 30-16 lead as the rain started to fall in the fourth and they barely held on for a close 30-25 victory over the Thundering Herd (6-3, 3-2 C-USA).

“It’s just the mentality that we always have to hit them in the head first, attack first, because they’re a good team too and we knew it was going to be a fight the whole game,” FAU’s Shelton Lewis said.

The Owls will look to continue their streak when they play Louisiana Tech on the road Saturday, Nov. 11 at 3:30 p.m.

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