The fourth quarter saw a change of leads at the beginning, but Samford was able to use its passing attack to seal the win with a score of 44-34.
McKinnon broke a 27-yard rushing touchdown to give GSU a 27-25 lead to begin the quarter, following a fumble recovery by junior safety Deion Stanley.
Samford and Summerlin’s arm would answer back in a big way. Summerlin tossed a touchdown to freshman receiver Karel Hamilton, accompanied with a successful two-point conversion, to put Samford back in the lead at 33-27. Summerlin would throw a 58-yarder to Pope and complete another two-point conversion to put Samford up 41-27.
Summerlin broke his own single-game school record this afternoon by throwing for 495 yards. Summerlin previously threw for 478 against Southeastern Louisiana University in a game earlier this season.
GSU answered back as McKinnon punched in a short touchdown to bring the score to 41-34, following a successful extra point by freshman kicker Younghoe Koo.
With an ensuing Samford drive, the nail was put in the coffin as the game clock was drained and Handrahan kicked a field goal with 16.9 seconds left. The final score from Birmingham stood at Bulldogs 44, Eagles 34.
The Eagles have fallen to 1-2 in conference play this season. GSU’s next matchup is next Saturday against The Citadel at Paulson Stadium.
The third quarter saw Samford change the tide of the game, as it took the lead 25-21.
McKinnon threw an interception on GSU’s opening drive in the second half while deep in Bulldog territory. Samford was able to capitalize with a 21-yard field goal by Handrahan following an 83-yard reception by senior wide receiver Kelsey Pope.
Following a GSU fumble on the next series, Samford marched down the field as senior running back Fabian Truss punched in a nine-yard rushing touchdown. The Eagles’ lead dwindled down to two points after a failed two-point conversion by Samford.
Truss broke another rushing touchdown, this time for 19 yards on the following Samford drive. Another failed two-point conversion brought the score to 25-21 in Samford’s favor.
The score stood as the third quarter came to a close.
The second quarter saw GSU answer back to Samford’s 10 points, to bring the score to 21-10.
In the Eagles’ opening drive in the second, GSU moved the ball down field and the drive concluded with a 24 yard touchdown pass from redshirt freshman quarterback Kevin Ellison to junior running back Tray Butler. The pass was Ellison’s first career touchdown pass.
GSU’s second drive ended in another pass between Ellison and Butler. This time it went for 58 yards and gave the Eagles a 14-10 lead over Samford.
With a 19-yard run in the second quarter, McKinnon passed Greg Hill for sixth all time on GSU’s career rushing list. McKinnon later passed Roderick Russell for fifth on the list with a 44-yard run that set up a rushing touchdown for senior running back William Banks to put GSU up 21-10.
After a Samford three-and-out, GSU would match with another three-and-out after a measurement on a fourth-and-short. Following the Eagles’ punt, Summerlin’ hail mary pass was batted down to end the first half of action. GSU went into halftime with a 21-10 lead.
The first quarter of action between Georgia Southern University and Samford University in Birmingham today was a quiet one as Samford leads GSU 10-0.
Opening drives for both teams ended in punts. On GSU’s first drive, senior quarterback Jerick McKinnon fumbled on third down to lead to an Eagle punt.
Samford scored its first points on a 19-yard field goal by redshirt freshman kicker Warren Handrahan. In GSU’s following drive, the result was another punt.
With less than one minute to go, Samford sophomore wide receiver caught a long touchdown pass on third and 20 to put the Bulldogs up 10-0.
The score would stand as the first quarter ended.