NCAAF: Trevor Etienne’s late TD vaults No. 18 Florida over USF

Trevor Etienne scored on a 3-yard run with just over five minutes left to cap a 28-yard drive following Tre’Vez Johnson’s interception and No. 18 Florida held on for a 31-28 win over visiting South Florida on Saturday night in Gainesville, Fla.

The Bulls (1-2) reached Florida’s 19-yard line in the final minute, but an errant snap on second down backed them up to the 33, and then a mishandled snap foiled Spencer Shrader’s 49-yard field-goal try that could have sent the game to overtime.

The Gators (2-1) saw an 11-point halftime lead wiped out when the Bulls’ Gerry Bohanon and Michel Dukes each scored a touchdown to put USF up 28-24 before Etienne’s score.

With sophomore Brian Battie rushing for a career-high 150 yards and Bohanon rushing for 102, the Bulls outgained the Gators 402-329 in total yardage and seemed to have their first win over a ranked foe since 2016 within reach.

But Bohanon’s second interception created a short field that the Gators cashed in on.

Florida’s Anthony Richardson threw for 112 yards and two picks.

Montrel Johnson Jr. led the Gators in rushing with 103 yards, 62 coming on a scoring dash in the second quarter.

Florida built its 24-13 halftime cushion on a pair of touchdowns in a 1-minute, 35-second span late in the second quarter. Nay’Quan Wright capped an 81-yard, penalty-aided drive with a 7-yard touchdown run with 4:45 left in the half and Jalen Kimber followed with a 39-yard interception return on USF’s ensuing possession for a 24-10 Florida lead.

USF closed out the half with Shrader’s 49-yard field goal.

The Bulls owned a statistical edge at the break thanks to running 40 plays to the Gators’ 23. That helped the visitors to a 272-204 advantage in total offense with a 216-129 cushion in rushing.

Battie finished the first half with 99 rushing yards while Bohanon had 69.

–Field Level Media

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