In a series ECU had dominated, the Pirates and Blazers went back and forth at Legion Field before the visitors emerged victorious, 42-35.
ECU’s playmakers came to play Saturday night and were huge contributors in the win.
Most notably, junior-transfer running back Vintavious Cooper rushed for 172 yards, which is a career high, and two touchdowns while adding a 30 yard touchdown catch as well.
Quarterback Shane Carden was impressive for the second consecutive week, finishing 23-35 passing for 386 yards, a career high, and two touchdowns. In his last two games, Carden has thrown for 694 yards with seven touchdowns and no interceptions.
Carden’s favorite target, Justin Hardy, did his part again, notching six grabs for 137 yards, including a spectacular go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter.
ECU’s defense struggled to apply pressure to UAB redshirt freshman quarterback Austin Brown, finishing the game without a sack. Subsequently, Brown picked apart the Pirate secondary, passing for 319 yards and three touchdowns.
ECU raced out to a 10-0 lead with a two yard Michael Dobson touchdown run and a 20 yard chip-shot Warren Harvey field goal. Then, it seemed like the Pirates were lacking energy in the second quarter, which could have been due to the mere 12,403 fans in attendance.
The Blazers took advantage, going on a 14-3 run to end the first half with a one yard Darrin Reaves touchdown run and a 35 yard touchdown pass from Brown to JaMarcus Nelson.
The Pirates offense came out of halftime revitalized and seemingly, unstoppable. ECU scored on its first four possessions of the second half, with the fifth being used to drain the final seconds of the game.
Last week’s man of the hour, Justin Jones, had only one grab for no gain. Danny Webster had three catches for 42 yards, including a crucial 28 yard reception during the Pirates eleven play drive that led to the go-ahead Hardy touchdown.
For UAB, Nick Adams recorded four catches for 114 yards receiving while Jamarcus Nelson had five for 60 yards and a touchdown. On defense, senior linebacker Marvin Burdette finished with a remarkable 17 tackles, 12 of them being solo.
ECU’s leading tackler was a senior cornerback Leonard Paulk with eight.
With Saturday’s win, the Pirates have recorded its first set of back to back wins. Next week, ECU will host Navy at 3:30 pm ET. The game will be televised on Fox College Sports.