The Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns are no longer undefeated.
Coastal Carolina dominated time of possession in Wednesday night’s matchup between the two unbeaten Sun Belt Conference opponents at Cajun Field. That proved to be a determining factor as the Chanticleers edged the Ragin’ Cajuns 30-27.
With the loss, No. 21 Louisiana is now 3-1 on the season
How It Happened:
Louisiana opened up the game with a 10-play, 75-yard drive which featured at least two carries by three different running backs, including a 21-yard run by Chris Smith. The Ragin’ Cajuns capped the drive with a 12-yard touchdown pass from Levi Lewis to Jalen Williams. The touchdown pass was the 40th of Lewis’ career which is the third-most in program history.
Coastal Carolina responded with a 10-play, 75-yard drive of their own. The Chanticleers marched down the field as quarterback Grayson McCall found wide receiver Jaivon Helligh twice on the drive for 18 and 12 yards. Coastal Carolina finished off the drive with a one-yard touchdown run by CJ Marable.
After the two teams punted on their next possessions, Louisiana appeared to have something going offensively after Lewis threw a 41-yard pass to Williams down the left sideline. The drive though would stall and the Cajuns were forced to punt.
Coastal Carolina took the lead in the final few minutes of the first half.
The Chanticleers went 84 yards on a mere seven plays and was capped off with a 13-yard pass from McCall to Marable. The extra point attempt was no good.
Louisiana responded with a nine-play, 77-yard drive that showcased big pass plays by Lewis as he connected with Kyren Lacy twice (17 and 18 yards) and Williams (23 yards). Lewis then capped off the drive with an 8-yard touchdown run with nine seconds on the clock. The Ragin’ Cajun signal-caller even struck the Heisman pose in the back of the end zone. The snap though was bad on the ensuing extra-point attempt and the kick was no good.
Coastal Carolina opened up the second half with a methodical scoring drive.
The Chanticleers took a total of 8:12 off of the clock with a 16-play, 75-yard drive. On that drive, Coastal Carolina was 3-of-4 on third downs and also picked up a fourth-down conversion as well. The drive was capped with a 6-yard touchdown pass from McCall to Heilligh. The pass was actually tipped by the tight end by Heilligh still hauled in the pass.
Louisiana responded by going 66 yards on just seven plays as running back Elijah Mitchell scored on a 9-yard run. The extra point was good and with less than four minutes in the third the game was tied 20-20.
After forcing Coastal Carolina to punt, Louisiana committed a costly mistake. Lewis threw an errant pass along the sideline and Jordan Morris dove for the interception. That gave the Chanticleers the ball at the 26-yard line of the Ragin’ Cajuns. McCall then took a designed quarterback keeper for a 22-yard gain.
McCall capped off the drive with a 3-yard touchdown run.
Louisiana answered as Lewis scrambled for a career-long 51-yard run which set up a 1-yard touchdown run by Mitchell.
Coastal Carolina closed out the game with a 10-play, 61-yard drive which was capped by Massimo Biscardi’s game-winning 40-yard field goal.
Big Number: 38:11
Coastal Carolina successfully ran its RPO offense and milked the clock throughout the game. The Chanticleers held the ball for 38 minutes and 11 seconds. The Ragin’ Cajuns held the ball for only 21 minutes and 49 seconds.
Player of the Game: Jalen Williams
The Ragin’ Cajuns wide receiver came up with a few big catches in Wednesday’s game. Williams led all receivers with four receptions for 89 yards, including a 41-yard completion.
Next Up: Louisiana will play at UAB on Friday, October 23rd. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.