HAWAII GROWN: Milton returns for UCF’s 21st win in a row

Mililani alumnus McKenzie Milton wants to play football again after suffering a gruesome knee injury last year as quarterback of the UCF Knights. Associated Press photo.

After sitting out a game with an undisclosed injury, Central Florida quarterback McKenzie Milton returned to action Thursday night and led the Knights to their NCAA-best 21st consecutive win.

Milton, a 2016 Mililani alumnus, finished 17-for-33 for 312 yards and three touchdowns and added a 1-yard TD run in a 52-40 win over Temple in a game broadcast by ESPN.

He was considered day-to-day with an injury leading up to kickoff.

“We’re a battle-tested team,” Milton said in an interview with ESPN after the game. “Whenever we face adversity, we respond. We just rally together and that’s a sign of a great team.”

The Knights began the week ranked No. 9 in the Associated Press Top 25 and were No. 12 in the first College Football Playoff rankings released Tuesday.

The Owls are the first team with a winning record UCF has defeated this season.

UCF trailed Temple 34-28 at halftime before outscoring the Owls 24-6 the rest of the way. The Knights have scored at least 40 points in 14 of their 21 consecutive wins.

“We believe in our head ball coach in whatever he tells us and we made some adjustments at halftime,” Milton said. “We fought for 60 minutes and that’s what we preach every day. We were a little sloppy up front to begin the game and then our O-line just started taking over in the run game in the second half.”

Up next for UCF is Navy at home on Nov. 10.


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