For the second straight week, the Coastal Carolina football team and “Mother Nature” met on the gridiron at the same time. And for a second consecutive outing, the Chanticleers were able to handle the elements and their opponent. This time on a rainy night in Statesboro, Georgia, Coastal Carolina slogged out a 28-8 victory over Georgia Southern, claiming its first ever victory on the Eagles home turf. With the win, Coastal moves to 8-1 overall and 4-1 in Sun Belt play, while the loss drops Georgia Southern to 2-7 and 1-5 in the league.
Playing in nearly identical conditions that saw Coastal drop a triple-overtime decision to the Eagles two seasons ago, the Chanticleers broke open a scoreless first quarter tie with a twenty-one point barrage in the second period, fueled by defense and special teams.
Following a fumble inside Georgia Southern territory, CCU got on the board with a three-play, 36 yard drive finished off by a 12 yard TD pass from backup quarterback Bryce Carpenter to Kam Brown. Carpenter got the start on Saturday after Grayson McCall suffered an upper-body injury in CCU’s win against Troy last Thursday. Head coach Jamey Chadwell says McCall is out indefinitely.
The senior QB from Sarasota, Florida took full advantage of his opportunity, scoring a rushing touchdown on the Chanticleers’ next series. After forcing another fumble, CCU needed just three plays to navigate forty yards with Carpenter scrambling in from twenty-three yards out to up the visitor’s advantage to 14-0 with 3:23 remaining in the opening half.
Coastal then unleashed its special teams to break Georgia Southern’s back and put the game out of reach. Alex Spillum blocked an Eagles’ punt attempt as time was winding down in the second quarter. Redshirt freshman linebacker Mason Shelton scooped up the loose ball and scurried 33 yards for the score, giving Coastal a 21-0 advantage at halftime. The play was the fourth blocked kick of the season for CCU with the three blocked punts being returned for touchdowns, a single-season Chanticleer record.
The second half was a race to end the game as quickly as possible with conditions continuing to deteriorate. So, CCU put together a 92-yard scoring drive for its final points of the contest. The 12-play, 6:49 march ended in a Shermari Jones 7-yard touchdown run, giving Coastal a 28-0 advantage with 5:17 remaining in the third quarter.
Georgia Southern avoided the shutout with a six-yard TD toss from back-up quarterback Cam Ransom to Beau Johnson. The Eagles converted a two-point conversion to cut CCU’s advantage to 28-8 with 10:56 left in the fourth quarter, but neither team would dent the scoreboard again.
That’s because Jamey Chadwell turned it over to his defense to finish off CCU’s first win in Statesboro in three tries. The Chanticleers held Georgia Southern to just 86 yards rushing, while freshman defensive end Josaiah Stewart broke his own single-game school record for sacks with 4.0 on the night. The Massachusetts product also led the way with six total tackles, 5.0 tackles-for-loss, and two forced fumbles in the win.
Coastal returns home next Saturday to entertain Georgia State at 2pm in Conway. Meantime, Georgia Southern visits Texas State for a 3pm kickoff in San Marcos, Texas.
CCU HC Jamey Chadwell — Postgame Press Conference
CCU Defensive End Josaiah Stewart — Postgame Press Conference