ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Marshall quarterback Chase Litton went 23 for 34 for 218 yards and one touchdown as the Thundering Herd defeated the UConn football team by a 16-10 score in the 2015 St. Petersburg Bowl at Tropicana Field.
The Huskies, who were back in bowl play for the first time since the 2010 season, finish the year at 6-7 while Marshall was 10-3.
The Huskies played stingy defense as Marshall was limited to three field goals following first quarter TD. Nick Smith had three FGs for Marshall, including a 32-yarder with 1:44 to play that was part of a 13-play, 80-yard march that lasted 6:35.
UConn redshirt quarterback Bryant Shirreffs (Jefferson, Ga.) completed 10 of 17 passes for 86 yards and gained 75 yards on 19 carries for UConn.
The Huskies stopped Marshall on fourth-and-two at the UConn 17 on the initial drive of the second half after the Thundering Herd opted to skip a field goal try. The Thundering Herd also failed to increase a 13-7 lead on their next possession when Smith missed a 43-yard field goal attempt with less than three minutes left in the third.
The Huskies got within 13-10 on a 52-yard field goal by redshirt junior Bobby Puyol (North Palm Beach, Fla.) with two seconds left in the third. The 52-yarder was tied as the sixth-longest in school history and tied as the third-longest in UConn's FBS history. It was also a career-long for Puyol and the longest in UConn bowl and St. Petersburg Bowl history.
Puyol was named UConn's Game MVP by the bowl.
Marshall took a 7-0 lead seven minutes into the game when Litton threw a 16-yard TD pass to Ryan Yurachek. Deandre Reaves' 26-yard punt return set up Marshall at the UConn 20. Reaves also had nine receptions for 88 yards.
UConn tied it at 7-7- late in the first on an eight-yard run by sophomore tailback Ron Johnson (Naples, Fla.) that completed a 13-play, 75-yard drive.
Marshall responded with a 13-play, 65-yard drive that concluded with Smith's 21-yard field goal that gave the Thundering Herd a 10-7 advantage eight minutes before halftime. Smith made it 13-7 with a 29-yard field goal on the final play of the first half that finished off a 15-play, 85-yard drive.
UConn sophomore cornerback Jamar Summers (Orange, N.J.) got his eighth interception of the season, including six in the last five games, early in the fourth quarter. Summers' eight interceptions is tied for second in UConn single-season history and first in the Husky FBS era.
The Huskies now look forward to winter conditioning and spring football. UConn opens the 2016 season at home on Thursday, September 3 when it plays host to Maine at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field.
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