Marcus Jones returned the opening kickoff 91 yards for a touchdown then returned the next kick he fielded 87 yards for a score to lead Troy (8-2, 5-1 Sun Belt) to a 42-17 victory over Coastal Carolina (1-9, 0-6 Sun Belt) Saturday evening at Brooks Stadium.
Three Trojans rushed for touchdowns and quarterback Brandon Silvers threw for two. Coastal’s Kilton Anderson, making his first start as a Chanticleer, threw two touchdowns.
For the second time this season – and second time in CCU history – Coastal Carolina allowed its opponent to score on the opening kickoff as Jones caught the kick on the CCU nine and burst up the middle for a 91-yard score and 7-0 lead.
Coastal nearly responded with an impressive opening drive, getting the Troy 16, but Troy picked off a pass to end the threat. However, the Chanticleers answered in kind with an interception by Preston Carey. The drive stalled and CCU had to settle for a 39-yard Evan Rabon field goal to make the score 7-3 with 4:11 left in the first quarter.
However, Troy’s Jones struck again with an 87-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and a 14-0 advantage. He is the 21st person in NCAA FBS history to return two kickoff for touchdowns in a game.
The Trojans tried an on-side kick after the score, but Coastal recovered the ball. Three plays later, Anderson hit Malcolm Williams for a 31-yard touchdown and the point after cut the CCU deficit to four, 14-10, with 2:44 left in the opening period.
Troy opened the second quarter by converting a fourth-and-seven from the CCU 27. Silvers capped the 10-play, 75-yard run with a 10-yard rushing score to make the score 21-10. The Trojans then turned an interception into a touchdown to grab a 28-10 lead. Blace Brown picked off a deep pass and returned it to the CCU 36. Like the previous drive, Troy converted a fourth down (4th-and-9) and later scored on an eight-yard rushing TD by Jordan Chunn.
Coastal opened the second half by converting a fourth-and-two (Alex James four-yard rush) and a third-and-19 (Osharmar Abercrombie 21-yard rush). Anderson then found Chris Jones for a 44-yard touchdown pass to cut CCU’s deficit to 11, 28-17.
After the teams traded punts, Troy pushed its lead to 35-17. Silvers converted a third-and-nine with a 14-yard run. On the next play Josh Anderson powered his way for an 11-yard score. With 6:44 left in the game, Troy took a 42-17 lead as Silvers hit Deondre Douglas for a 19-yard TD pass.
Coastal Carolina will hit the road next Saturday (Nov. 18) to face Sun Belt foe Idaho. Kickoff in Moscow, Idaho, is set for 2:00 pm (PT) / 5:00 pm (ET).