Big Second Half Runs The Citadel by BucsSeptember 1, 2012
CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Charleston Southern Buccaneers fumbled twice on their first three possessions of the second half and saw a 14-7 second quarter lead slip away in a 49-14 loss to The Citadel on Saturday night at Johnson-Hagood Stadium.
The Bucs took a 14-7 lead in the final two minutes of the first half on a Malcolm Dixon TD run to seize brief control late in the half, but the Bulldogs answered with a touchdown run 1:13 later to tie the game at the half, 14-14.
The Citadel controlled things throughout the second half though, forcing three turnovers, including two early third quarter fumbles which it converted into touchdowns.
CSU falls to 0-1 on the year, while The Citadel moves to 1-0.
The Bulldogs controlled the game in the first quarter, but not the scoreboard, outgaining CSU 138-to-zero through 15 minutes. Leading 7-0 at the 11-minute mark in the second, the Bulldogs drove to the Bucs’ 2-yard line before Calvin Bryant jumped on a Bulldog fumble to end the threat.
The Bucs then took control for a 10-minute stretch in the second quarter.
Dixon led a 10-play, 98-yard drive to tie the game at 7-7. He found Chase Jones swinging out of the backfield for a 15-yard touchdown pass to cap the scoring drive.
The Bucs would force a Bulldogs fumble on the ensuing possession.
Dixon, again, would make a play, this time with his legs, to give CSU the lead. The junior quarterback scrambled and dove across the goal line to cap a 6-play drive.
The Bulldogs’ would stay in their option offense, but go to the two-minute version to tie the game just before the half. A 27-yard Rickey Anderson touchdown run capped a 5-play, 65-yard drive to tie the game at the half, 14-14.
"We weathered the storm in the first quarter and responded very well in the second quarter, CSU head coach Jay Mills said. "We took the lead, and then second half we did not respond. We didn’t handle the turnovers well and it wasn’t the because of a lack of effort. It was because we were pressing. We were trying to do too much."
Mistakes, on both sides of the football mounted after the Bucs took the lead.
"The second half we did not execute, we imploded," we put the ball on the ground two times in the third quarter and it was very disappointing, and we didn’t handle it. There are lessons to be learned in life and lessons to be learned in the game of football. We want to learn the lessons one time, so we don’t have to learn them in game. I give a lot of the credit to The Citadel, they executed very well."
CSU bent defensively on the Bulldogs opening drive, but stiffened in the red zone and caught a break on a special teams mistake to keep The Citadel scoreless.
The Bulldogs would drive 68 yards in eight plays, all on the ground, picking up a first down inside the Bucs’ 10-yard line. CSU would hold the Bulldogs out of the end zone and Citadel’s Thomas Warren pulled a 30-yard field. Warren made his first attempt, but a false start penalty wiped the three points off the board.
The Bulldogs fumbled on first down at the 1-yard line, but recovered and scored on the next play on a run by Rickey Anderson.
The Bulldogs forced a fumble by CSU’s Teddy Allen to open the second half and punched it in on a 10-yard Ben Dupree touchdown run to quickly seize the lead and momentum in the second half . Allen had a first down for CSU on the half’s initial possession, but had the ball punched out from behind and the Bulldogs pounced on it at the Bucs’ 42. The Citadel again did it all on the ground, scoring in six plays to take a 21-14 lead.
The Bulldogs would force a CSU punt on the ensuing possession and take a two TD lead one play later. A 54-yard run by Darien Anderson on the first play on the Bulldogs’ drive gave The Citadel a 28-14 lead.
A second CSU fumble in the third quarter would help the Bulldogs add to their lead. The Citadel would go 24 yards in six plays to extend their lead to 35-14.
Robinson led The Citadel with 120 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries, while Anderson had three TDs and 80 yards on 10 carries. Dupree chipped in 84 yards rushing and a pair of touchdown runs.
The Bucs struggled to slow the Bulldogs’ option attack, allowing 479 rushing yards on 69 carries. The Citadel threw only six times.
After a big second quarter, turnovers slowed the CSU offense in the second half. Dixon finished 6-of-14 for 123 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
Teddy Allen led the Bucs rushing attack with 57 yards on 11 carries. CSU rushed 44 times for 140 yards in the game.
The Bucs open their home schedule next Saturday against Jacksonville University. Kickoff is at 1:30 p.m. at Whitfield Center Stadium.Related Item: Box Score