Hairston's 4 TDs lead East Carolina past Towson, 28-20

GREENVILLE, N.C. (AP) Chris Hairston rushed for 154 yards and four touchdowns, both career highs, to help East Carolina beat Towson 28-20 in the season opener for both teams on Saturday night.

A 32-yard field goal by Sam Hurwitz pulled Towson within one with 10:18 left in the third quarter, but ECU quickly responded with a 10-play, 75-yard touchdown drive to make it 21-13. Hairston ripped off a 25-yard run to start the drive and his 1-yard touchdown run capped it.

Hairston had five touches for 53 yards, including an 11-yard touchdown run, during a 10-play, 69-yard series that gave the Pirates a 15-point lead with 12:21 to play.

Connor Frazier's 1-yard touchdown run about 4 1/2 minutes later cut Towson's deficit to 28-20 but, after the defense forced a three-and-out, the Tigers' offense couldn't convert on a fourth-and-7 from the ECU 16.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.