Medlock scrambled to his right as Willis Wright came open along the right sideline downfield. Wright shook off one tackle attempt, then dragged another defensive back into the end zone for the touchdown.
In the second quarter, FAU responded to FIU’s third sack in three drives with two quick passes — a slant to junior Daniel McKinney for 36 yards to the FIU 24 and an out to freshman Jason Stoshak for 7. On third-and-3 from the 17, Wilbert lofted a ball into the end zone for Nexon Dorvilus. FIU fifth-year senior linebacker Winston Fraser positioned himself for the knockdown, but mistimed his leap. Dorvilus came down with the game-tying touchdown.
Call and response: Medlock found Glenn Coleman for 11 on a first-down throw, Kedrick Rhodes for 12 on a third-and-6 and Younger downfield for 24 on a second-down play-action pass. Another second-down completion to Younger, this time for 16 yards, put the ball on the FAU 5.
And then, the Panthers got a little cheeky. After sending Wright in motion to the left, Medlock took the snap and started to the left as if on a sprint out.
Just as two FAU linemen snagged Medlock, he twisted and fired an overhand lateral to right tackle Rupert Bryan. Bryan corralled the lateral, then chugged down the sideline to plow into the end zone.
As a lateral recipient, Bryan didn’t need to report as eligible.
Another FAU possession ended in a sack, FIU’s fourth, before, once again, the Panthers injected drama into the punt return. Kelly’s punt bounced off freshman Jeremiah McKinnon’s helmet and David Hinds recovered for FAU at the FIU 33.
A 37-yard Mitch Anderson field goal resulted, cutting FIU’s lead to 14-10 at halftime.