CONWAY, S.C. – CJ Beasley took the handoff, darted up the middle and hurdled an Eagle on his to a 24-yard touchdown run with 38 seconds left to lift Coastal Carolina to a 34-30 Sun Belt Conference football win over Georgia Southern Eagles Saturday night in Brooks Stadium.
It was the third lead change in the final 5:55 of the game. The Eagles had taken a 30-28 advantage on an Alex Raynor 20-yard field goal with 2:05 remaining.
Coastal Carolina’s Grayson McCall threw to Jared Brown for a 33-yard gain down to the Georgia Southern 24-yard line to set up the game-winning run. The Chanticleers also benefitted from a pass interference flag on the Eagles on 3rd-and-10 from their own 28-yard line.
Eagles of the Game:
Raynor was 3 for 3 on field goals in the contest, and Jalen White rushed 18 times for 145 yards and a touchdown. Kyle Vantrease finished with 284 passing yards and two touchdowns, and Derwin Burgess Jr. caught seven passes for 68 yards and a touchdown.
Jeremey Singleton had six receptions for 48 yards and a touchdown, Amare Jones caught five passes for 65 yards and Khaleb Hood had four grabs for 62 yards. Wylan Free led the defense with 10 tackles, and Anthony Wilson finished with 10 stops and a pass breakup.
Coastal Carolina trailed by six points when McCall hit Brown for a 61-yard touchdown pass, and Kade Hensley added the point after to give the Chants a 28-27 cushion with 5:55 left in the game.
The Eagles got pinned on their own 12-yard line on the ensuing kickoff, but two huge pass plays and two White runs for 27 yards ignited the drive. Vantrease hit Jones, who toe tapped inbounds for a 25-yard gain, and the fifth-year senior threw a middle screen to Singleton who burst through the line and then found daylight around the left side for a 24-yard pickup to set up Raynor’s final field goal.
With the Eagles (3-2, 0-1) leading 17-14 and facing 4th-and-1 from the Coastal Carolina 18-yard line, White took the pitch around the right side and put on a burst of speed on his way to the end zone to give the Eagles a 10-point cushion early in the fourth quarter.
Coastal Carolina (5-0, 2-0) answered just 1:59 later with McCall threading a 36-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Roberts, trimming the margin to 24-21 with 10:10 left on the clock. Raynor kicked a 30-yard field goal on the Eagles’ next possession to push the lead back to 27-21 after Vantrease found Hood for a 37-yard reception to help set up the score.
Key Stats and Notes:
– Kickoff was moved back to 7 p.m. from 4 p.m. due to Hurricane Ian.
– The Eagles converted 9 of 20 on third and fourth down.
– The teams combined to score 36 points in the final 16:05 of the contest.
– The teams combined for 947 yards of offense.
The Eagles stay on the road and travel to Atlanta to face in-state rival Georgia State Saturday, Oct. 8, at 2 p.m. on ESPN+.