CLINTON, S.C. - Noah Shuler scored the go-ahead touchdown with 3:43 left in the fourth quarter and Charleston Southern overcame a strong defensive effort by Presbyterian on Saturday afternoon as the Buccaneers held on to win the Big South opener for both teams, 7-0.
Solomon Brown came up with the play of the game as the redshirt junior linebacker forced a fumble at the PC 15-yard line that was recovered by Landon Sayegh. Four plays later Shuler carried the ball into the end zone on the dive up the middle to give CSU a lead the Bucs would not relinquish.
Presbyterian took the ball to midfield on their ensuing possession as quarterback Ben Cheek found Cedric Frazier three times for 29 yards, and then added a 17-yard pickup on the ground to take the ball to the Blue Hose 48. However, the Bucs defense stood up to the last minute drive with Sayegh coming through with a sack on fourth down to end PC's final possession of the game.
Shuler led the Bucs with 62 rushing yards and touchdown, while Ronnie Harris picked up 59 yards on 12 carries in the game.
Defensively, Anthony Ellis led the Bucs with two sacks, 2.5 tackles for loss and a forced fumble among his seven tackles. J.D. Sosebee and Bobby Ruff added a team-high eight tackles apiece in the win.
How They Scored
- Noah Shuler capped a four-play, 15-yard drive with a tough two-yard run up the middle to put the Bucs on the board with 3:43 remaining in the fourth quarter. The touchdown was set up by a Solomon Brown forced fumble and Landon Sayegh fumble recovery.
Inside the Numbers
- Charleston Southern was held under 200 yards' total offense for the second consecutive game and third time this season as the Bucs picked up 195 yards' offense (36 passing, 159 rushing) in the win.
- Shuler led the Bucs' rushing efforts for the third time this season and eclipsed the 50-yard mark for the fourth time this year with a team-high 13 carries for 62 yards. Shuler also paces the Bucs with four rushing touchdowns this season.
- Ronnie Harris was back over 50 yards for the second consecutive game as the Richmond Hill, Ga. native finished with 12 carries for 49 yards.
- Kameron Brown reached double-digit receptions for the season after leading the Bucs with two catches for 16 yards in the game.
- Bobby Ruff posted a career-high eight tackles in the win.
- Anthony Ellis recorded his second multi-sack game of the season with his two quarterback takedowns. Ellis ended the contest with 21 career sacks.
- Landon Sayegh finished with three tackles, a sack, a tackle for loss, and a fumble recovery in the win.
- PC running back Torrance Marable finished the contest with 28 yards on 13 carries. Marable entered the game leading the Big South with 564 rushing yards, averaging 94.0 per game through the Blue Hose' first six games of the season.
News and Notes
- Anthony Ellis forced his third fumble of the season and seventh of his career in the first half against the Blue Hose
- Ellis recorded his 40th career tackle for loss and 20th career sack in the first half to make the senior defensive end just the third player in Big South football history to achieve the mark. Ellis joins Gardner-Webb's Brian Johnston (53.5 TFL, 20.5 sacks) and Liberty's Chima Uzowihe (44.0 TFL, 25 sacks) as the only players in conference history to achieve the mark.
- CSU entered the contest on a seven-game conference road winning streak dating back to Oct. 25, 2014, against Coastal Carolina. The streak was tied for the longest with Liberty (2006-09).
- Saturday was CSU's third game with at least three forced turnovers in the contest as the Bucs recovered a trio of fumbles. The Bucs forced three turnovers in the win over Mississippi Valley State two weeks ago, and four more on the road last week at Indiana.
- The Bucs recorded their Big South record eighth consecutive conference road win with the victory over the Blue Hose. The streak dates back to the Bucs' October 25, 2014, loss at Coastal Carolina (43-22), and surpasses the streak established by Liberty (Nov. 11, 2006 – Nov. 14, 2009).
- Jackson Williamson became CSU's all-time games played leader with his start on Saturday against Presbyterian. The redshirt senior center started his 46th game with the Bucs, eclipsing the mark set by Colton Korn (45, 2013-16) and Nathan Prater (45, 2011-15).
- Saturday's win was CSU's first conference road shutout since the 2015 season when the Bucs topped Gardner-Webb, 34-0, on October 24 in Boiling Springs, N.C.
- The Bucs improved to 7-9 all-time in conference openers with the win over the Blue Hose. The Bucs are 2-0 when taking on Presbyterian in CSU's Big South opener.
- The Bucs improve to 11-14 overall against Presbyterian with their third consecutive win over PC.
Tweet of the Game
Charleston Southern returns home for next week's Breast Cancer Awareness game against Savannah State. CSU will honor Breast Cancer warriors by releasing 500 pink balloons during the pre-game festivities. Wear pink to get a balloon for free, or purchase a balloon for $1. All proceeds will go toward the support of breast cancer research. Kickoff between the Bucs and the Tigers is set for 6 p.m. on the Big South Network.