GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — The East Carolina football team slammed the door and said “Good Knight.”

Ahlers propels East Carolina to 34-13 romp over UCF

There were no four overtimes needed in Saturday’s win. The Pirates broke their six-game losing streak to the University of Central Florida. It was the last time these two teams would face off as AAC foes before UCF switches over to the Big 12, and ECU sent them off in good fashion, winning 34-13.

Let’s take a look at some key contributing factors to the huge Pirate victory:

Jireh Wilson

On UCF’s first drive of the game, Wilson came up with the big interception that got the Pirates on the board after Andrew Conrad nailed a 28-yard field goal. In the second quarter, Wilson also picked up a fumble caused by Julius Wood against UCF quarterback John Rhys Plumlee. It eventually put ECU up 10-0.

East Carolina Defense

It’s easy to recognize the player who caused the one turnover of the game, but the East Carolina defense forced FOUR turnovers, three of them coming in the first half. There were three interceptions, including one in the last few minutes of the game, and a fumble. Three of the turnovers were on three consecutive drives.

ECU also almost held UCF to their first, first-half shutout for the Knights since October 31st, 2015. However, the Knights were able to move downfield to kick a field goal with two seconds left in the first half, putting the score at 17-3 going into halftime.

Holton Ahlers

Ahlers played one of his best games in purple and gold. He was 30-of-36 for 311 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions. Ahlers was the one who ran in for the 3-yard touchdown after the fumble by UCF, ECU’s first touchdown of the game.

He also became the ECU career passing touchdown leader.

C.J. Johnson

Johnson was a huge part of where most of Ahlers’ success came from Saturday. He had 11 catches for 140 yards, one of those catches being called a “SportsCenter Top 10” catch in the third quarter. Johnson also had a 39-yard score. This was a complete turnaround from his performance against the Knights last year, as he had no catches in that game.

Isaiah Winstead

A new trend on social media for a good athlete is referring to them as “HIM.” People are now referring to Winstead as “HIMSTEAD,” and it’s well deserved. Winstead had a huge catch in the first quarter and was able to rack up seven grabs for 89 yards.

Special teams

The game began with a missed field goal by the Pirates and it seemed as if that was going to be the story of the game. Fortunately, Conrad has lived up to his expectations and besides that first kick, was perfect.

ECU will travel to BYU on Friday for an 8 p.m. game.