Troy falls short in comeback bid
LAFAYETTE, La. – Troy fell just short of knocking off the top team in the Sun Belt Conference on Thursday, falling to Louisiana-Lafayette, 41-36, at Cajun Field.
The Trojans faced a fourth-and-goal late in the fourth quarter but Corey Robinson’s pass to Eric Thomas fell incomplete allowing the Ragin’ Cajuns to run out the clock.
Troy (5-5, 3-3 Sun Belt) trailed by as many as 15 points in the first half but a 20-point second quarter coupled with a strong second half defensive performance gave them a shot at the comeback.
Brandon Burks rushed for 126 yards and Will Scott kicked three field goals for the Trojans. Scott’s 53-yarder with 4:09 left in the first quarter set a new school record which he previously set with a 52-yard kick against Florida Atlantic last year. For Burks, it was his third 100-yard rushing game of the season.
At the 13:30 mark in the second quarter, Jordan Chunn rushed for his 11th touchdown of the season, a 1-yard plunge to bring the Trojans within eight, 21-13. Chunn leads all NCAA freshmen in rushing touchdowns.
After Louisiana-Lafayette (7-2, 4-0) responded with a touchdown, Troy marched quickly down the field to set up another scoring opportunity. On third-and-goal from the six, Khary Franklin took a handoff from Robinson but pulled up and tossed the ball to a wide-open B.J. Chitty in the back-right corner of the end zone.
On the ensuing ULL drive, Camren Hudson stepped in front of a Travis Broadway pass and returned it 65-yards for a score. The touchdown cut the deficit to two, 28-26. The Ragin’ Cajuns would score once more before the end of the half. The teams would combine to score 34 points in the second quarter alone and 66 in the first half.
The Trojans’ defense held Louisiana-Lafayette to just six points and seven first downs in the final two quarters.
Robinson connected with Thomas for a 3-yard score with 6:59 left in the game. It was Thomas’ 11th touchdown reception of the season. On the play, Robinson took over as Troy’s all-time leader in career touchdown passes with 80 breaking a tie with Sim Byrd. A 51-yard completion to Thomas on the game’s first play also gave Robinson sole possession of the Sun Belt’s career offensive yards record.
Defensively, Tyler Roberts recorded a pair of sack on the night. Roberts leads the team with six sacks.
The Trojans will play its final road game of the season as they head to Oxford, Miss., to face Ole Miss on Saturday, Nov. 16. The game is set for an 11a.m. kickoff and will be televised by ESPNU.
TROY – Scott 39-yard FG, 11:15, 1st 3-0
ULL – McGuire 38-yard run (Brauchle kick), 9:07, 1st 3-7
ULL – Sergent 67-yard punt return (Brauchle kick), 7:37, 1st 3-14
TROY – Scott 53-yard FG, 4:09, 1st 6-14
ULL – McGuire 60-yard pass from Broadway (Brauchle kick), 3:32, 1st 6-21
TROY – Chunn 1-yard run (Scott kick), 13:30, 2nd 13-21
ULL – Broadway 11-yard run (Brauchle kick), 10:22, 2nd 13-28
TROY – Chitty 6-yard pass from Franklin (Scott kick), 4:03, 2nd 20-28
TROY – Hudson 65-yard interception return (Robinson pass failed), 1:24, 2nd 26-28
ULL – Effrem 36-yards from Broadway (Brauchle kick), 0:45, 2nd 26-35
TROY – Scott 21-yard FG, 6:25, 3rd 29-35
ULL – Broadway 2-yard run (Broadway pass failed), 14:57, 4th 29-41
TROY – Thomas 3-yard pass from Robinson (Scott kick), 6:59, 4th 36-41