CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Citadel used a suffocating defense and a pair of special teams touchdowns to easily take care of business in a 43-14 victory over Charleston Southern Thursday night in the season finale.
Score: The Citadel 43, Charleston Southern 14
Records: Charleston Southern (5-6), The Citadel (5-6)
Location: Johnson Hagood Stadium (Charleston, South Carolina)
Series: The Citadel leads 6-5
How it Happened
- The Citadel jumped out to the early lead midway through the first quarter when Brandon Rainey capped an eight-play drive with an eight-yard touchdown run.
- Just two minutes later, Joe Douglas broke through and blocked a punt that was scooped up by Dante Smith and returned 24 yards for a touchdown.
- The Bucs got on the board early in the second quarter as they blocked a punt and returned it for a score.
- The Bulldogs were forced to punt on the next possession and Matthew Campbell’s 47-yard punt was downed on the one-yard line.
- On the next play, Aaron Brwley broke through the line and tackled the ball carrier in the end zone for a safety.
- The play forced the Bucs to kick off from their own 20-yard line and Raleigh Webb added to the lead by returning the kick 77 yards for a touchdown.
- After a CSU touchdown, the Bulldogs answered back with a 21-yard touchdown run from Grant Drakeford.
- The defense forced CSU to punt late in the half and the Bulldogs took over on their own 20 with 52 seconds to play in the first half.
- Rainey started the drive with a 45-yard pass to Ryan McCarthy and followed it up with a 17-yard connection to Webb.
- After stopping the clock with a spike, Rainey threw a fade route to McCarthy who made an unbelievable leaping catch over the defender.
- The second half belonged to the defense as the Bulldogs held CSU to minus-20 yards rushing and zero total yards in the second half.
- The Citadel was able to get a pair of field goals from Godek, a 33-yarder in third quarter and a 39-yarder in the fourth quarter, for the only scoring in the second half.
Inside the Numbers
- The Bulldogs outgained the Bucs 328-75, including 218 to minus-1 on the ground.
- The Citadel had 12 different players carry the ball with no player carrying the ball more than 11 times.
- Grant Drakeford led the way with 62 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries. Brandon Rainey added 45 yards on 11 carries.
- Rained also went 3-of-5 for 80 yards and a score.
- Ryan McCarthy led the receivers with two catches for 63 yards.
- Raleigh Webb had one catch for 17 yards, one rush for 36 yards and 94 yards on three kickoff returns, including the 77-yard touchdown.
- Joe Douglas blocked a punt in the first quarter that was scooped up by Dante Smith and returned for a touchdown. It was the seventh blocked kick on the season and the second punt Smith scooped up and returned for a touchdown.
- The defense held the Bucs to minus-1 yard rushing for the game and minus-20 yards in the second half.
- The Bulldogs recorded 12.0 tackles-for-loss and four sacks. Eleven different players recorded at least half a tackle-for-loss with Aron Spann, III, Destin Mack, Willie Eubanks, III, Russell Hubbs and Shawn McCord each recording 1.5 tackles-for-loss.
- Jay Howard picked off a pair of passes in the second half. They were the first two interceptions of his career.
The Bulldogs closed out the season by winning three of their last four games to finish 5-6.