CLINTON, S.C. – The Presbyterian College football team fell to 23rd-ranked Charleston Southern, 10-7, in a defensive game at Bailey Memorial Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The Blue Hose (1-6, 0-2 Big South) led early in the fourth quarter but was unable to hold off the Buccaneers (5-1, 2-0 Big South).
Darrell Bridges recorded his fifth game of 100+ rushing yards this season, amassing 104 yards on the ground on 26 carries with one touchdown, his seventh of the season. He has now totaled 817 rushing yards on the season, second-most in PC Division-I history. He is also tied for third place in PC history for rushing touchdowns in a single season with seven.
Kevin Green led the Blue Hose defense with eight tackles, while Donelle Williams recovered a fumble and recorded seven tackles to push his career total to 361. Obinna Ntiasagwe recorded a sack, his team-leading fourth of the season, and 1.5 tackles for loss to give him 5.0 for the season, also the team lead.
Presbyterian held Charleston Southern to 275 yards of total offense, the fewest in a game by CSU this season and second fewest allowed by PC on the year. The 10 points allowed by PC is the fewest allowed in a loss in the PC Division-I era (since 2007.)
Charleston Southern opened the scoring with a 33-yard field goal by Tyler Tekac late in the first quarter. The score capped off a 13-play, 57-yard drive for the Buccaneers that eclipsed 6:20. Alan Barnwell keyed the drive with back-to-back runs of 15 yards and 10 yards, respectively, to put CSU inside in the PC 20. The Blue Hose would force a loss on the ensuing play followed by two straight incompletions to force the field goal.
Presbyterian would answer late in the first half with a five-yard touchdown run by Bridges. The Blue Hose drove 60 yards on eight plays, with Bridges carrying the ball six times, to take 4:45 off the clock, while two key Charleston Southern aided the drive.
Charleston Southern would regain the lead for good midway through the fourth quarter on an eight-play, 75-yard drive that resulted in a touchdown. Backup quarterback Kyle Copeland highlighted the drive with a 40-yard run down inside in the PC 10-yard line to set up a score. Three plays later, Darius Hammond punched it in from four yards away and gave the Buccaneers a 10-7 lead with 8:48 to play in the game.
On the ensuing PC drive, D.J. Curl intercepted a Griffin pass and returned it down to the PC 11 to set up a scoring opportunity for the Buccaneers and give his team a chance to extend the lead. The Blue Hose defense rose to the occasion, though, and kept the Bucs out of the endzone, forcing a field goal attempt. The 21-yard field goal try would hook wide left and PC would take over at its own 20 with 6:33 to play, down just three points.
Three drives later, with 3:48 remaining in the game, PC would have another late game opportunity to grab a victory. Griffin completed a pass to Joseph Purter for eight yards on first down but would be sacked on the following two plays, bringing up a fourth-and-11 for PC from its own 10. Charleston Southern would clinch the victory on the ensuing play, as Troy McGowens intercepted a deflected pass to allow CSU to run out the clock on the following drive.
Charleston Southern rushed for 205 yards as a team with Hammond accounting for 70 yards and one touchdown and Copeland contributing 62 yards. Austin Brown completed 7-of-14 passes for 70 yards through the air.PC will be off next week before returning to action on Saturday, October 31, when it plays host to Gardner-Webb at Bailey Memorial Stadium.