MONROE, LA: Coastal Carolina scored four touchdowns on its first five possessions and then held on for a 28-21 victory at ULM on Saturday night. The win, in front of an announced crowd of 18,448 at Malone Stadium, was CCU’s ninth straight victory, which is the second-longest active winning streak in all of FBS football. The decision also improved the Chanticleers to 6-0 overall and 3-0 in Sun Belt Conference action, while the Warhawks fell to 2-4 on the season and 1-2 in the league. Coastal is now bowl eligible for a third consecutive season.
In the opening paragraph of his novel, A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens perfectly summed up CCU’s play on the bayou. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, and for Coastal’s offense, it truly was. After rolling up 323 yards of total offense and grabbing a 28-14 lead at the break, the Chanticleers were somewhat inept in the final 30 minutes on that side of the line of scrimmage, allowing ULM to hang around until the bitter end.
CCU head coach Jamey Chadwell had a different adjective to describe the varying degrees of success he saw from his team on Saturday night.
“Offense was awesome in the first half, they sucked in the second half,” Chadwell said in his postgame conversation. “Defense sucked in the first half, awesome in the second half. And our special teams just sucked, period. Kicking was atrocious.”
The Chanticleers threw for 246 yards and ran for 187 yards on the night, as quarterback Grayson McCall was 19-of-28 through the air with one touchdown and rushed nine times for 41 yards on the ground. Running back CJ Beasley toted the ball a game-high 15 times for a game-high 115 yards and two scores, while redshirt-freshman Max Balthazar scored his first career touchdown on three carries for 30 yards in the win.
For the Warhawks, quarterback Chandler Rogers was 27-of-30 for 279 yards and two touchdowns, as he completed 16 consecutive passes in the contest. The ULM quarterback connected with 10 different receivers, led by Alfred Luke’s team-high six catches, while both Tyrone Howell (4 rec., 77 yards, TD) and Zach Rasmussen (1 rec., 5 yards, TD) each had a touchdown catch in the loss. On the ground, the Warhawks ran for 145 yards, as Malik Jackson led the way with 12 carries for 52 yards and a score, while Andrew Henry added nine rushes for 41 yards out of the backfield.
Defensively, Coastal recorded two fourth-down stops (both inside the fifteen-yard line) and forced two fumbles, which proved to be the difference in the contest.
Coastal celebrates “Homecoming” next Saturday at Brooks Stadium against Old Dominion. The 12-noon start will be nationally televised by ESPNU.
CCU Sports Information contributed to this report