CONWAY, SC- The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Blazers were riding high after a 52-0 shutout in week one over Savannah State. That ride, however, only kept them in the game for the first half against Coastal Carolina University on Saturday.
Coastal was hungry for a victory this week after a tough 49-15 loss against the University of South Carolina in week one. The Chanticleers were prepared as they hit their home turf at Brooks Stadium in Conway.
In its first possession of the game, Coastal’s Marcus Outlow ran it 60-yards downfield for a touchdown to take an immediate 7-0 lead. The Blazers clapped back on their first possession tying up the game 7-7 with a four-yard run by quarterback A.J. Erdely.
The two teams remained neck-and-neck throughout the first half. The Blazers edged the Chanticleers across the statistics board resulting in a 24-20 lead as they headed into the locker rooms. Coastal had the opportunity to close the gap on the Blazers’ lead but missed a 45-yard field goal in the last play of the half.
“[UAB] moved the ball effectively. They shut us down on offense,” Coastal Carolina’s head coach Joe Moglia said about the first half. “What I was proud of about our guys is the way we hung in there.”
Coastal Carolina returned to the field sharp and refreshed. The Chanticleers dominated the second half of the game with 27 unanswered points.
“We got punched in the mouth at first,” Coastal’s defensive tackle C.J. Brewer said. “We said whoa, everybody get their minds right and got back to playing Coastal Carolina football like we’re used to playing.”
The third quarter started with a punt to Coastal after a failed drive by UAB. The Chanticleers put their gears into motion, breezing down the field to take the lead 27-24 with another run by Outlow.
Coastal proved its strength in the fourth quarter with two more unanswered touchdowns. Quarterback Kilton Anderson tossed out a seven-yard pass to Alex James for one of the scoring plays. Torrance Marable picked up the other on a two-yard run. The Blazers put out the effort for the comeback but were intercepted. The Chanticleers quickly turned that turnover into another Marable score.
Coastal Carolina went home with a 47-24 victory over the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
“Frankly, I think [UAB] really got tired,” Moglia said. “Our guys are in very good shape. Our guys hung in there and I couldn’t be prouder that they just hung in there, did what they needed to do for us to win. This is a big win for Coastal Carolina.”
“We pride ourselves on being conditioned,” Outlow said. “In the first half, we were just finding our way. In the second half, when I came in the locker room I told the guys its zero to zero. It’s a whole different game when we come out for the second half. That’s when we rely on our conditioning, that’s when we rely on our preparation, our technique, every play.”
Coastal Carolina had the ability to rack up the score higher, but kicker Massimo Biscardi missed multiple kicks, including two conversions. Moglia ended the game with Myles Prosser, who successfully handled the last two extra points.
“[Biscardi] has done a good job in the past but the extra points are a pretty easy kick so for him to miss those is pretty unacceptable,” Moglia said. “We felt it was time to give someone else the opportunity.”
The Blazers were plagued by penalties. They had a total of 15 for 143-yards, nearly triple that of the Chanticleers, and the only end-game statistic that wasn’t close.
UAB ended the game with Erdely going 12-26 with one interception. Kendall Parham led the receiving end with three catches for 65-yards, while Spencer Brown dominated the Blazers rushing offense with 94-yards off 20 runs. Fitzgerald Mofor lead the team with 11 tackles on defense.
Coastal Carolina’s Kilton Anderson went 11-18 and two touchdowns. Ky’Jon Tyler had three receptions for 63-yards. Outlow rushed 141 yards in 20 runs. Defensively, the Chanticleers were strong with three players leading: Fitz Wattley, Silas Kelly, and Tarron Jackson all ended the game with eight tackles each.
Both teams enter into week three with 1-1 records. Coast Carolina takes on the Campbell Fighting Camels at 7:00 p.m. Saturday, Sept.15 at Brooks Stadium in Conway. UAB is back on their home field against Tulane next Saturday at 1 p.m.
This was the second matchup between UAB and Coastal Carolina. In 2017 the teams played against each other for the first time in Alabama, where the Blazers came out on top by one touchdown.