Courtesy of Charleston Southern Athletics
- Charleston Southern outgained VMI 386-242, but lost their homecoming contest against the Keydets 34-16, Saturday at Buccaneer Field. The loss drops the Bucs to 2-5 (0-3) and marks the first time since 2003 that CSU has lost three home games in a season.
Andrew Trudnowski set new career high in completions (25), attempts (53) and passing yards (326) in his second career start. His 53 pass attempts are the third-most in a single game in school history, while his 25 completions ties for the 10th most in school history. For the second time this year, the Bucs had two receivers top the century mark with Gerald Stevenson leading the way with seven receptions for 129 yards. Deon Lee had six catches for a career-high 112 yards. With three kick returns for touchdowns in the past two games, Stevenson was held without a kick return in the game, while the Bucs combined for five returns for 59 yards. Stevenson did have two punt returns for a total of 15 yards.
DeMarcus Moon carried the ball a career-high 20 times for 68 yards and B.J. Hackworth had four carries for 22 yards. Defensively, Chris Patrick led the way with eight tackles, while Fred Godfrey got in the backfield for two tackles, including the lone sack of the day. Demaris Freeman recovered a fumble on the first VMI drive of the third quarter.
CSU ran 86 plays on offense, the most since 2007 when the Bucs had 87 plays against Presbyterian.
With four interceptions, the Bucs turned the ball over four times for the second time in three games. It is the first time since 2008 that CSU has thrown four interceptions in the same game.
Cameron Jones led the Keydet offense with 114 yards through the air and another 20 on the ground. Chaz Jones had 51 rushing yards for three touchdowns. A.J Gross had a game-high 17 tackles for the VMI defense.
With the first possession of the game, a struggling CSU offense that posted just 282 yards last week moved the ball 27 yards on six plays before disaster struck. Trying to swing the ball out, Trudnowski's arm was hit on the release, sending the ball floating through the air. Greg Walker ran through it, returning it 58 yards for the touchdown, taking the home crowd out of it just over three minutes into the game.
CSU came right back as Trudnowski found Stevenson for 69 yards and a game-tying score on the next drive. It was the longest play from scrimmage for the Bucs this season, and the longest touchdown play since Collin Drafts found Bryant Burch for 81 yards and a touchdown against Gardner-Webb on November 4, 2006.
The first and only lead of the day for CSU came with 5:27 on the clock in the first quarter as the Bucs drove 80 yards in eight plays. The drive ended with a 24-yard touchdown pass to Kwame Krakue, putting CSU up 13-7 after a missed extra point. .
The Keydets responded with 10-straight points in the second quarter to take the 17-13 lead into halftime. It is the fifth time that CSU has trailed at halftime, with the Bucs falling in each of the five contests.
John Paglia connected on his third field goal of the season, connecting from 38 yards out to make it 17-16 in the third, the quarter's only points.
The fourth-quarter was all VMI, though, as the Bucs struggled on fourth-down in the fourth quarter, turning the ball over on downs on three possessions. Two of the other three possessions for the Bucs ended in interceptions as the Bucs tried to force the issue to get back in the contest.
VMI used the offensive struggles of CSU to add 17 points, putting the game out of reach. CSU controlled the ball for 35:47 of the game, the most time CSU has held the ball in a game this year.
Charleston Southern will be on the road the next two weeks as they face Stony Brook and Kentucky, while VMI will step out of Big South play to face Army.