Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Charleston Southern sophomore Larry Jones III had five catches for 103 yards and the go-ahead touchdown in the second half as the Bucs improved to 7-0 with a 25-17 win at VMI on Saturday.
The Buccaneers secured a winning season and opened Big South play with a win for the first time in seven seasons.
The Bucs answered the bell in the second half after falling behind 17-16 following a VMI field goal in the third quarter. CSU scored the game’s final nine points and heads to Colorado next Saturday as one of the FCS’ final six unbeatens.
“Any time you go on the road in conference, it’s going to be a tough game no matter who it is, and VMI played really well and had a good game plan,” CSU coach Jamey Chadwell said following the win. “We started out really well early and had a chance to put it away, but gave them some chances to get back in it and they made some plays.”
The Bucs were steady throughout as freshman Danny Croghan III completed 18 of 27 passes for a career-high 245 yards and two TDs. He found Jones III up top for the decisive score as CSU pushed the game to a max one-possession lead in the fourth quarter.
The Buccaneers piled up 456 yards of offense on 76 plays and wore down VMI to sneak away.
Former Goose Creek High School standout Kevin Glears finished with four catches for 46 yards, including a 27-yard touchdown connection with Croghan in the first quarter as part of a 13-0 start.
The Keydets rallied to take a 14-13 lead at the break.
CSU rallied with a pair of 22-yard field goals from Mark Deboy to build a 25-17 lead. A 48-yard throw-and-catch from Jones III to Croghan III sealed the win for the Bucs.
Safety Demaris Freeman led the Bucs with 10 tackles and Calvin Bryant added eight to lead the CSU defense. CSU returns to action on Saturday against Colorado. Kickoff is at 2 p.m.
The Buffaloes are 2-3 and have lost three games in a row. They are coming off a 54-13 loss to Arizona State and lost to No. 2 Oregon 57-16 a week earlier.
The game is the Buccaneers’ first against a Pac-12 opponent and was added on Sept. 30 after Colorado needed a 12th game. Colorado’s game with Fresno State on Sept. 14 was canceled due to severe flooding in the Boulder area.
The Bucs-Buffaloes will be televised on the Pac-12 Network. The Pac-12 Network is available through some providers in the Charleston area including AT&T’s U-Verse and DISH Network.
“It is a big opportunity for us,” Chadwell said. “It’s a chance for us to showcase Charleston Southern University and our football program. Also, playing this type of game against a quality opponent like Colorado provides long-term benefits for our program.”