Eagles' Incredible Playoff Run Ends
NEWARK, Del. - Georgia Southern's (10-5) incredible run through the NCAA FCS playoffs ended Saturday afternoon at Delaware Stadium. The Eagles, making their first appearance in the semifinals since 2002, fell 27-10 to fifth-ranked Delaware (12-2).
After a scoreless first quarter for both teams, Delaware scored early in the second quarter on a Pat Devlin touchdown pass to Mark Schenauer to take a 7-0 lead. Mike Perry added a 21-yard field goal late in the second quarter and the Blue Hens took a 10-0 advantage into the locker room.
Keyed by a 53-yard run by freshman Jerick McKinnon (Marietta, Ga.) from the slotback position, the Eagles set up for its first score on its first possession of the second half. Junior Adrian Mora (Dalton, Ga.) hit a 40-yard field goal to put Georgia Southern on the board, Delaware 10, Eagles 3.
An Eagle fumble recovered by Siddiq Haynes at the Delaware 37 gave the Blue Hens another opportunity in the third. After a15-yard pass to Nihja White put Delaware at the GS 24, Phillip Thaxton caught the next pass for a Blue Hen touchdown and a 17-3 Delaware lead.
Two passes from Jaybo Shaw (Flowery Branch, Ga.) to J.J. Wilcox (Cairo, Ga.) and Tray Butler (Stockbridge, Ga.) to start the fourth quarter put the Eagles at the UD 37. Steadily carrying for rushes of five, six and seven yards by Shaw, Robert Brown (Macon, Ga.), and McKinnon, Georgia Southern advanced to the UD 20.
A 12-yard pass completion from Shaw to Wilcox set the Eagles up with first-and-10 at the eight-yard line. On the fourth play, Brown went six yards and then up and over for the touchdown. Mora added the point after, his 95th career consecutive PAT, to pull the Eagles within a touchdown, 17-10.
Capitalizing on a 30-yard kickoff return, Pierce had back-to-back runs of 18 and 35 to move to the Georgia Southern seven-yard line. David Haynes punched it in for the Blue Hens on the three-play drive and extended the Delaware lead to 24-10 with 6:05 left in the game.
Delaware got the ball back deep in Georgia Southern territory off a GSU turnover and the Blue Hens added a Perry field goal UD 27, Georgia Southern 10, for the final.
Robert Brown (Macon, Ga.) became the first true freshman to rush for more than 1,000 yards in a season since Joe Ross in 1987, finishing the 2010 season with 1,004. McKinnon finished with 101 rushing yards. Three Eagles, Darreion Robinson (Bishop, Ga.) and Brown had 49 yards rushing each with Wilcox at 48. Josh Rowe (Opelika, Ala.) tied his career best with 12 tackles and Carlos Cave (Macon, Ga.) registering a career-best 10.
Delaware's Pierce finished the game with 186 yards rushing and with Haynes carrying six times for 20 yards and a touchdown. Devlin was 14-20 for 137 yards and two touchdowns, connecting with eight different receivers. Anthony Bratton had a career-best 14 tackles and Paul Worrilow had 12 for the Blue Hens.
- Category: Football
- Published on Saturday, 18 December 2010 17:44