Coastal Carolina opened the 2022 season on Saturday night with a 38-28 win over Army. A record crowd of 21,165 packed into Brooks Stadium in Conway to witness the Chanticleers pick up the 150th victory in program history as the school celebrates the 20th anniversary of CCU football.
The see-saw affair saw each team enjoy a seven-point lead at different junctures in the first half. At the 7:25 mark of the first quarter, Army silenced the sell-out crowd as Tyrell Robinson raced 70 yards through the Coastal defense to give the Black Knights a 7-0 lead. It was the first of three explosive touchdowns for Army, which was making just its second appearance against an FBS program in the state of South Carolina. The previous trip was a 45-8 triumph at South Carolina during the 1958 season.
CCU responded with a 12-play, 85-yard drive to tie the game on a six-yard TD reception by running back Reese White. The senior from Sandy Springs, Georgia, had a career night, rushing for 133 yards and scoring three touchdowns (one rushing, two receiving).
The Chanticleers grabbed their first lead of the night early in the 2nd quarter as transfer wide receiver Sam Pinckney wowed the crowd with a diving reception in the end zone to put the teal and black up 14-7 with 12:21 remaining in the first half. The Greenwood native and former Georgia State Panther hauled in three receptions for 69 yards and a score in his CCU debut.
In a contest in which possessions were at a premium, Army blinked first. With Coastal enjoying a 24-21 lead late in the third quarter, the Black Knights committed the only turnover of the game and it proved costly. Tavyn Jackson’s interception of a Tyhier Tyler pass ended the period and gave the Chanticleers a chance to go up by two scores. An opportunity that CCU seized, as White scored his third TD of the night to cap a 56-yard drive in 11 plays, putting the home team up 30-21 with 9:51 to play.
Army would score less than a minute later to cut the margin to three, but Grayson McCall’s lone touchdown run of the night sealed the deal with 3:01 remaining in the contest.
McCall, whom the school is hoping will be considered for the Heisman Trophy this season, started the campaign off with an efficient 12-of-17 passing night for 174 yards and 3 TDs. He also rushed six times for 27 yards.
CCU will play host to Gardner-Webb next Saturday at 6pm, while Army plays its home opener against UTSA.