The Towson Tigers pulled off the season's first big upset, defeating UConn 33-18 Thursday night at Rentschler Field in East Hartford. The Tigers were led by 156 rushing yards and two touchdowns from running back Terrance West and 192 passing yards from quarterback Peter Athens.
Connecticut opened the scoring with a 31-yard Shakim Phillips touchdown catch, capping a 92-yard first quarter drive and giving the Huskies a 7-0 lead. It would be the last lead they would hold. Towson tied the game two minutes later on a 23-yard touchdown pass from Peter Athens to Sterling Phifer.
A Chandler Whitmer second quarter interception gave Towson the ball at the UConn 29, and Phifer quickly cashed in a second touchdown to extend Towson's lead to 13-7. A long UConn drive stalled at the Towson 5 yard line, leading to a field goal, and the Tigers took a 13-10 lead to the locker room.
Towson extended its lead to nine points with a 13-play, 95-yard touchdown drive that ate up more than half of the third quarter. Another Tigers touchdown, this one from a five-yard run by West. UConn added a late score and two-point conversion to draw within 8 points, but a second West touchdown sealed the Huskies' fate.
Whitmer struggled throughout the game, completing just 16 of 28 pass attempts for 206 yards, one touchdown and a crucial interception. The Huskies could not put together any semblance of a running game, with just 81 yards on 27 carries.
Towson, which went 7-4 in 2012 and won a share of the Colonial Athletic Association title, has never defeated an FBS opponent in their 26-year history in Division I-AA/FCS. Last season, the Tigers hung with LSU, trailing the Bayou Bengals by just 8 points at the half before losing 38-22. Towson is located in Baltimore, Maryland, and is known as the alma mater of former New York Giant halfback Dave Meggett.