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ECU football with lots of positives coming out of Thursday night home win over South Florida

ECU 29, USF 14 Thursday Night
Published: Oct. 29, 2021 at 11:58 PM EDT
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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - ECU football got back to .500 last night with an impressive come from behind 29-14 win over South Florida. It was the 900th game in program history and the first time the Pirates have beaten the Bulls at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.

“Regrouped. I thought the kids kept their composure at halftime and we just made some adjustments defensively,” says ECU head coach Mike Houston, “I mean a dominant performance in the second half. Just those kids played their freaking tails off. I am just so proud of them.”

Holton Ahlers ran more this week picking up 78 yards, many of them in key situations. He moved into 2nd place in program history for career passing yards. He moved ahead of David Garrard on this pass to fellow D.H. Conley grad C.J. Johnson.

“Yeah it was good to see him back you know when he’s rolling it’s hard to stop him. He’s one of the better guys in this conference,” says ECU quarterback Holton Ahlers, “Audie and Snead too. I missed a couple passes to those guys. They could’ve had a bigger night than they did. I trust those guys tremendously and if we get CJ rolling we are going to be pretty dangerous.”

Rahjai Harris hit the 100-yard mark for the 4th time in his career. He also had a touchdown in the game.

“I got a couple homeboys that play with South Florida. You know we do a lot of, a lot of talking before the games and stuff so. They kind of get me ready for the game,” says ECU running back Rahjai Harris, “You got a feel pretty good about you know you had a good game. There will always be things that show up on film that you just got a fix”

The defense shutout the Bulls in the 2nd half. They held USF to 0 for 7 on 3rd down, forced 4 turnovers and got a goal line stand early.

“Our defense stepped up,” says ECU defensive back Teagan Wilk, “I think we pitched a shout out in the second half right? I feel like as a group it just shows you that we stay together and we don’t really panic.”

After a short week, The Pirates get a long week to prepare for Temple. They have won 3 straight home conference games and their 4 wins match their most in a single season since 2015.

“We believe we can go on a little stretch here to end the season,” says Ahlers, “and that’s what we’re going to do to get to a bowl game.”

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