Padgett, Connors lead Rice to 28-7 win over Charlotte

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — AJ Padgett threw for a touchdown and ran for two more, Dean Connors rushed for 184 yards and Rice defeated Charlotte 28-7 on Saturday.

Padgett was 13-of-21 for 140 yards passing, throwing a 20-yard TD pass to Luke McCaffrey for the Owls’ final points late in the fourth quarter. He also had TD runs of 5 and 2 yards. He survived two interceptions.

Connors carried a load with his career-high yardage total on 19 carries for the Owls (5-6, 3-4 American Athletic Conference), coming on a day when Rice didn’t approach its average of over 277 yards passing per game.

A Padgett TD run and Tim Horn's two field goals put Rice in front 13-0 at halftime. Padgett made it 21-0 in the third quarter with his other rushing TD.

Trexler Ivey had Charlotte's only score with a 12-yard rush in the fourth quarter. The 49ers (3-8, 2-5) were held to 158 yards offense to the Owls' 380.

Rice now holds a 3-2 edge in the series after the 49ers won the previous two meetings.

In regular-season finales next Saturday, Rice is home to Florida Atlantic and Charlotte plays at USF.

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