University of Connecticut senior wide receiver Deshon Foxx (Lynchburg, Va.) had a 72-yard punt return a touchdown in the third quarter to help lead the Husky football team to a 19-16 win over Stony Brook on Saturday at Rentschler Field before a crowd of 23,543.
The win improves UConn to 1-1 on the season and gives Husky head coach Bob Diaco his first career college head coaching win. Stony Brook falls to 0-2 on the season.
UConn redshirt senior wide receiver Geremy Davis (Lawrenceville, Ga.) caught six passes for 113 yards and a 30-yard touchdown and moved into seventh place on the Huskies all-time receiving list with 1,980 career yards.
"It took us 10 weeks last year just to get one win," Davis said. "A win is a win. These guys fought hard -- defense, offense and special teams."
The Seawolves, from the powerful Colonial Athletic Association, led much of the first half and trailed just 12-10 at halftime.
Foxx gave UConn a 19-10 lead in the third quarter when he grabbed a 61-yard Luke Allen punt that had bounced over his head, turned left, then reversed field and found a seam down the middle.
"He definitely outkicked his coverage," Foxx. "I got a lucky bounce and when I was turning around I noticed that I had a whole lot of field to work with, so I just did what I can do and I had great blockers."
Stony Brook, which outgained UConn 300 yards to 223, put together a 14-play, 88-yard drive in the fourth quarter, capped by a 14-yard touchdown pass from Conor Bednarski to Will Tye. The Seawolves failed to recover an onside kick and could not move the ball after getting in back in the final minute deep in their own territory.
UConn opened the game with a five-play, 40-yard drive that ended with a 42-yard field goal from redshirt sophomore Bobby Puyol (North Palm Beach, Fla.), who added a 27-yarder in the second quarter.
Stony Brook took a 7-3 first-quarter lead after a punt pinned UConn on its own one-yard line. Safety Max Martinez then stripped the ball and Naim Cheeseboro recovered in the end zone.
The Seawolves added another field goal late in the quarter after a UConn fumble, giving Stony Brook the ball at the Husky 20-yard line The Huskies had just 63 yards of offense before putting together a 70-yard drive late in the second quarter that put UConn up to stay.
Redshirt senior quarterback Chandler Whitmer (Newnan, Ga.) found Davis in the right corner of the end zone for a 30-yard touchdown pass. The extra point was blocked. Whitmer completed 12 of 27 passes for 142 yards. He also was the Huskies leading rusher with 52 yards on 13 carries.
UConn was also were helped by their kicking game. Puyol's first field goal was the longest of his career and redshirt freshman punter Justin Wain (Wilmington, N.C.) averaged 41.8 yards on nine punts. Stony Brook was forced to start six second-half drives inside its own 20-yard line.
"The team today showed a lot of grit and grind," said Diaco. "Our brotherhood shined through. Our culture shined through."
The Huskies return to action next Saturday at noon when they play host to Boise State at noon at Rentschler Field. The game will be televised on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2.