Eastern Michigan Rallies To Defeat Connecticut, 32-25

Updated 9/2/2000

YPSILANTI, MICH. (AP) (Sept. 2) - Walter Church threw a 4-yard scoring pass to Kevin Walter with 1:50 left to play, then hit Kenny Christian with a 2-point conversion pass as Eastern Michigan rallied to defeat Connecticut 32-25 on Sept. 2.

Connecticut quarterback Ryan Tracey, right, is brought down by Eastern Michigan linebacker Ken Philpot, left, after a 2-yard gain in the first quarter.
(AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
The Eagles' win was the first for former Arizona assistant Jeff Woodruff.

Eastern led 24-13 after three quarters. But the Huskies (0-1) pulled to within 24-19 on Ryan Tracey's 2-yard pass to Tommy Collins 3 seconds into the fourth quarter, and went up 25-24 on Tracey's 21-yard toss to John Fitzsimmons with 6:19 left to play.

Church led a six-play, 17-yard drive capped by his touchdown pass to Walter and 2-pointer to Christian.

The Huskies had 402 yards to 355 for the Eagles. But Eastern had the more balanced attack, as Church passed for 205 yards and directed a rushing attack that finished with 150 yards. The Huskies' Tracey passed for 340 yards and three touchdowns, but Connecticut managed only 62 yards on the ground.

The Eagles went up 17-10 on Idris Wells' only carry of the game, a 1-yard run with 6:23 left in the second quarter. Eastern made it 24-10 on John White's short run with 11:18 left in the third quarter. Jeff Heyl's 34-yard field goal brought Connecticut to within 24-13 with 4:40 left to play. Fitzsimmons caught a 46-yard TD pass from Tracey in the second quarter, and finished with four receptions for 124 yards. Taber Small led Connecticut rushers with 41 yards on 16 carries.

Eastern's White led all rushers with 58 yards on 19 carries. Converted defensive back James Willingham has 12 carries for 43 yards and the Eagles' other rushing touchdown. Nick Avondet punted seven times for an average 47.7 yards.