|Written by Mike Kelly|
|Saturday, 28 September 2013 19:09|
The Appalachian State University football team suffered its third consecutive loss at home (dating back to last year's playoff loss to Illinois State) at Kidd Brewer Stadium. Charleston Southhern (5-0), which defeated The Citadel in its season opener (on September 7), picked up its second
win against a Southern Conference school by knocking off App State 27-24 Saturday afternoon. The Buccaneers got the job done with a strong running game, and a stingy ball-control offense.
CSU outgained App State 428-424, which included 298 yards on the ground; the Bucs also held a huge advantage in time of possession as they hung on to the ball for 42:04 compared to just 17:56 for the Mountaineers. And they ran 81 plays to just 51 for the Mountaineers, who fell to 1-3, and who lost their third straight at home for the first time since 1979.
"In the second half, we never really had control," said App State coach Scott Satterfield. "They just kept converting on third down. It's simple. They made the plays and we didn't. In football, the team that makes the plays usually wins, especially in a tight game like this one."
The Bucs were 10-18 (56%) on third-down conversions and 3-3 on fourth down tries. They converted four third-down attempts on their game-winning drive. Trailing 24-20, CSU marched 16-plays in 60-yard, and eventually punched it in with backup quarterback, Daniel Crogan at the contols.
He stepped in when starter, Malcolm Dixon, went down with a leg injury. Facing a third-and-goal from the App State 15-yard line, Crogan, who missed on his first pass attempt of the day, hooked up with Kevin Glears on the game-winning TD pass. That game-winning drive came with 5:27 left to play, and the Bucs chewed up nearly nine minutes (8:50 to be exact) off the clock.
"It's certainly difficult when your on the field for three-quarters of the ball game," said Carl Anderson, who led the Moutaineers with 16 tackles. "We gave up too many third-down conversions. Good Lord, in the first half, we've got them at third-and-16, and we don't get off the field. That's totally unacceptable."
The Mountaineers had one final gasp as they marched the ball down to the CSU 35. But an incomplete pass from Kameron Bryant to Tony Washington on fourth-and-one killed the drive, and basically put the Bucs in the winner's circle.
"First of all, let's tip our hats to Charleston Southern," said running back Marcus Cox, who had another stellar day for the Mountaineers. "They had a good game plan. We moved the ball on some plays, but we also had some breakdowns. We just have to come back Monday at practice and correct those mistakes."
Cox led the Mountaineers with 89 yards on 17 carries with two touchdowns; he also caught four passes for 91 yards and a TD. His 65-yard run-and-catch with 4:47 left in the third quarter gave App State a 24-20 lead. That effort capped off a three play, 81-yard drive and it only took 45 seconds.
"The problem all day was on third down," Satterfield said. "They just kept running the clock. They did exactly what they were suppose to do. They just kept grinding out those first downs. We also did a bad job on the penalty issue. Crucial penalties at crucial times didn't allow us to get off the field. We've got to continue to work, and we got to keep these guys movtivated. By no means are we giving up on the season."
App State was flagged seven times for 68 yards. Bryant, who got the bulk of the snaps on Saturday, was 10-15 for 180 yards and a TD; wide receiver Sean Price caught five passes for 98 yards. Running back Christian Reyes was the workhorse for CSU. He picked up 167 yards on 34 carries with a TD; Dixon, before his injury late in the fourth quarter, ran for 95 yards on 12 attempts. He was also 12-17 through the air for 115 yards with a TD and an interception. Glears was their top receiver with seven catches for 64 yards and the game-winning TD catch
The Mountaineers (1-0 SoCon) return to SoCon play next Saturday. They travel to Charleston to play the Citadel for a 2 p.m. game. Coverage begins at 12 noon on the Appalachian-IMG Radio Network, and AM 1450, WATA.
NOTES: Appalachian State fell to 1-3 for the first time since 2003 with the loss to undefeated Charleston Southern (5-0)....The loss snapped Appalachian State’s 16-game winning streak versus current members of the Big South Conference. It was Appalachian’s first loss to a current Big South member since a 25-19 defeat to Liberty on Nov. 22, 1997....Appalachian State has lost consecutive home games in the same season for the first time since losses to Furman (20-14) and Marshall (24-10) on Oct. 12 and 26, 1996....True freshman running back Marcus Cox scored three touchdowns for the second-straight game. He has eight touchdowns in the first four games of his collegiate career, including six in his first two starts....One week after becoming the first player in Appalachian State history with 100 rushing yards and 100 receiving yards in a season, Cox finished with 89 rushing yards and 91 receiving yards on Saturday.....For the second-straight week, sophomore wideout Sean Price fell just short of 100 receiving yards. Price caught 5 passes for 98 yards. In his season debut last Saturday at Elon, Price had 99 yards on eight receptions. He has had 100 receiving yards in seven of his 15 career games.
Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Total
Charleston Southern 7 10 3 7 - 27
Appalachian State 7 10 7 0 - 24
13:32 APP - Marcus Cox 14 yd run (Drew Stewart kick), 5-58 1:28 0 - 7
1:02 CSU - CRUZ, Alexander 16 yd pass from DIXON, Malcolm (HIGGINS, T. J. kick), 17-83 9:09 7 - 7
14:17 APP - Marcus Cox 2 yd run (Drew Stewart kick), 7-76 1:45 7 - 14
10:05 CSU - REYES, Christian 14 yd run (HIGGINS, T. J. kick), 9-79 4:07 14 - 14
5:52 APP - Drew Stewart 28 yd field goal, 11-54 4:07 14 - 17
00:31 CSU - DEBOY, Mark 32 yd field goal, 11-66 5:15 17 - 17
5:38 CSU - DEBOY, Mark 21 yd field goal, 9-65 4:10 20 - 17
4:47 APP - Marcus Cox 65 yd pass from Kameron Bryant (Drew Stewart kick), 3-81 0:45 20 - 24
5:27 CSU - GLEARS, Kevin 15 yd pass from CROGAN III, Daniel (HIGGINS, T. J. kick), 16-60 8:50 27 - 24
FIRST DOWNS: APP 18, CSU 27
RUSHING YARDS: APP 122, CSU 298
PASSING YARDS: APP 302, CSU 130
TOTAL YARDS: APP 424, CSU 428
FUMBLES/LOST: APP 0-1, CSU 0-0
TURNOVERS: APP 0, CSU 1
POSSESSION TIME: APP 17:56, CSU 42:04
PENALTY YARDS: APP 7-68, CSU 4-41
Photo Courtesy: Sean Price, ASU Athletics
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