THE WEEK IN MISSOURI SPORTS: Tigers hold on to 21-16 victory against UCF

Sunday, September 30, 2012 | 6:06 p.m. CDT
Missouri tailback Kendial Lawrence runs the ball late in the fourth quarter against Central Florida placekicker Rodrigo Quirarte on Saturday at Bright House Networks Stadium in Orlando, Fla.

COLUMBIA — The Tigers looked to bounce back this week after the crushing loss to South Carolina last Saturday.

Fueled by Marcus Murphy's 66-yard punt return in the third quarter, Missouri did just that by defeating Central Florida 21-16. The return gave the Tigers the momentum and forced the Knights to punt in their next four drives. Missouri running back Kendial Lawrence, who rushed for over 100 yards and a touchdown while also catching four passes for 50 yards, played an integral part in the Tigers' victory.

This was the Tigers first ever match-up with the Knights. The game was the first chance Tiger fans who ventured to Orlando to see the school's tailgating tradition of partying on the strip of lawn named "memory mall." Students bring their tents and pack into the mall located about a half-mile from the stadium.

What others had to say

Arguably the play of the game came in the second quarter on freshman wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham's 80-yard touchdown reception. St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Vahe Gregorian called the touchdown "a major moment" for the top recruit. Before this game, Green-Beckham had only six catches for 48 yards this season. 

Mizzou blog wrote about the game on Saturday. In a post game critique, the site praised the Tigers defense but continued to question the ability of the players on the other side of the ball. Despite the offensive concerns, there was no debating the effort put forth by Lawrence.  

High school football

Hickman was able to continue their undefeated season on Friday night in dramatic fashion. Trailing Jefferson City 9-7 late in the fourth quater, the Kewpies fought back with a 30-yard touchdown reception by receiver Roderick Beasley that quieted the Jefferson City crowd. The Kewpies took home the honors with a 14-9 win.

After watching the documentary "Undefeated" this week, Rock Bridge was able to put its two game losing streak to an end against Helias on Friday. The Bruins beat the Crusaders 35-6, and Rock Bridge's head coach A.J. Ofodile preached the message of the film to enjoy their time being a part of a high school football team to his players. 

Other sports

The Missouri women's soccer team remained undefeated against SEC opponents with a 2-1 victory of Georgia on Friday. Goals by Abi Raymer and Alyssa Diggs propelled the Tigers to victory. The team is 5-0 in conference play and 10-1 overall. 

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