CONWAY, S.C. -- Coastal Carolina put some offense together and hung in but could not stop Georgia Southern quarterback Jayson Foster, as the Chanticleers lost to the visting Eagles, 42-34, Sept. 15. With the loss, Coastal dropped to 1-2, while GSU moves to 2-0 on the year.
After the teams traded several possessions early on, Georgia Southern got on the board first as Foster had a cutback run of 31 yards for the first score to cap off a quick 5-play, 50-yard drive and give the visiting Eagles a 7-0 lead with just under four minutes to play in the first quarter.
The Chants had an immediate response on their end, as running back Jamie Fordham took the first play for a career-long 61-yard run for Coastal's first score of the game. Justin Durham hit the extra point to make it 7-7 just 17 seconds after GSU's score.
The Eagles came back on their own drive, putting another touchdown on the board courtesy of Foster. This time, the senior scored from 36 yards out to wrap up another five-play drive and make it 14-7 GSU with 1:36 remaining in the period.
On Georgia Southern's next possession, the Chants forced a miscue, as defensive back Keon Cunningham picked off an tipped pass from Foster and returned it 29 yards to the GSU 5. From there, fullback Mike Tolbert surged in from six yards out and the PAT again tied the game, this time at 14 with 11:43 to play in the first half.
The Eagles and Chants swapped possessions and then GSU put together a quick, long drive for the final score of the half. After being pinned on their own 8, the Eagles went 92 yards in just five plays, as Foster got his third touchdown of the game, this time on a 55-yard scamper with 6:30 to go. The 21-14 GSU advantage held until the halftime break.
CCU again rallied, this time in the third, with a 12-play, 78-yard scoring drive over 3:58. Quarterback William Richardson ended it with a one-yard drive, making it 21-all with 3:51 to play in the third.
On the next possession, the Eagles again took the lead after Foster ran around end for 18 yards and his fourth score. Jesse Hartley's PAT wrapped up the 10-play, 59 yard march and made it 28-21 Eagles just seconds into the fourth quarter.
Coastal again answered the call on its next drive, putting together an 11-play, 70-yard possession, ended by Tolbert's 1-yard dive on 4th-and-goal. However, Durham missed the PAT wide left and GSU clung to a 28-27 advantage with 10:58 to go.
Georgia Southern took a definitive lead on the next two drives. The Eagles capitalized on a CCU turnover on a punt, getting the ball at Coastal's 7. Two plays later, Foster posted his fifth touchdown, this time from eight yards out and the margin was 35-27 GSU. After the kickoff, another Coastal turnover, this time an interception, put Georgia Southern back with the ball at their own 29. Two plays and 24 seconds later, Foster made it six with a 17-yard run and a 42-27 lead with just over seven minutes to go.
Coastal kept battling and punched it in the end zone again, Tolbert tallying his third touchdown, also a one-yard run. After the score wrapped up the 10-play, 56-yard drive in just 2:34, CCU had cut it to 42-34 with 4:27 to go. That was as close as Coastal could get, as they never could get the ball back in the final minutes.
Georgia Southern outgained Coastal 570-370, including 512 yards on the ground. CCU managed 205 yards on the ground and 165 in the air and was 8-of-17 on third down conversions, as compared to 5-of-15 for GSU.
Foster set a new school record with six rushing touchdowns as well as posting a school record for a quarterback with 253 rushing yards on 28 carries. Lamar Lewis added 206 yards on 18 carries for the Eagles. Fordham led Coastal with 96 yards and one score on nine carries, while Tolbert had 14 carries for 74 yards and three scores. Richardson was 15-for-32 through the air for 165 yards and two interceptions. CCU linebacker Phillip Oboh led all tacklers with 12 stops (nine solo), one sack and two tackles for loss.
Coastal returns to the field next Saturday, Sept. 22, when the Chants head to Harrisonburg, Va. to take on No. 5 James Madison. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m.