(AP) — Freshman Alton McCaskill scored a career-best three touchdowns — all in the first half — and Clayton Tune passed for 241 yards and a pair of scores as Houston defeated Tulsa 45-10 on Friday night.
McCaskill, who gained 77 yards on 17 carries, scored twice from the 1-yard line and added a 27-yard burst up the middle that included a pirouette at about the 15 as he broke through the final defenders. He had previously scored two touchdowns each in wins over Rice and Grambling.
Houston (4-1, 2-0 American Athletic Conference) scored three straight possessions early, leading 21-0 less than a minute into the second quarter. Tune was 17 of 24 passing with touchdowns to Jeremy Singleton early and Seth Green late.
Tulsa’s first four possessions resulted in two punts, a turnover on downs and an interception. The Hurricanes never got on track, with 27 yards rushing, three turnovers and 11 penalties for 119 yards.
Two plays after a pass interference penalty on Houston kept a Tulsa drive alive, Davis Brin found Ezra Naylor II deep over the middle on a 41-yard scoring pass as the Hurricanes cut the gap to 42-10 late in the game.
Brin completed 20 of 39 passes for 258 yards with a touchdown against three interceptions. He was sacked four times for a loss of 40 yards.
Just before halftime, Tulsa’s Jaise Oliver intercepted Tune, resulting in an 11-play 65-yard drive ending with a 33-yard Zack Long field goal as the Hurricanes went into the break trailing 28-3.
Tulsa (1-4, 0-1) opened the second half with the ball, but held it for only three plays before Brin was picked off by Houston’s Gervarrius Owens, who returned it 45 yards for a Cougars touchdown.
Owens caught a tipped pass and picked up a convoy of blockers as he returned it along the right sideline for the score.
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