MOBILE, Ala. — UTSA atoned for the toughest loss of its inaugural season on Saturday with a thrilling 33-31 come-from-behind victory at South Alabama.
Sophomore Sean Ianno's career-long 51-yard field goal with 16 seconds remaining capped the dramatic win, which was the Roadrunners' first away from the Alamo City in program history.
South Alabama defeated UTSA, 30-27, last year in a double-overtime thriller at the Alamodome. UTSA had a chance to win that game in regulation, but Ianno's 26-yard field-goal attempt was blocked on the final play of regulation.
Originally was scheduled for Thursday night, the contest was pushed back two days because of Hurricane Isaac.
It was well worth the wait for the Roadrunners.
Ianno also was good on field goals of 47, 32 and 21 yards. His 32-yarder gave UTSA a 20-7 lead with 4:10 left in the first half, but the Jaguars came back to go ahead in the third quarter.
All three of the Roadrunners' touchdowns came on passes by junior Eric Soza, who completed 18-of-30 throws for 215 yards. He threw a 58-yard TD pass to sophomore Kam Jones and also had scoring strikes of 23 and 34 yards to junior Cole Hicks and sophomore Earon Holmes, respectively.
UTSA led 14-7 after the opening quarter and 20-14 at the half, but South Alabama cut the lead to three in the third and went in front, 24-20, on a 1-yard run by Kendall Houston with less than three minutes gone in the fourth period.
The Jaguars appeared poised to hand the Roadrunners another heartbreaking loss when a 34-yard touchdown pass from C.J. Bennett to Jereme Jones put USA ahead, 31-30, with 2:46 left.
However, the Roadrunners came back to pull out what undoubtedly is one of the most-satisfying victories in their brief history.
UTSA will be back in action next Saturday, Sept. 8, when it hosts Texas A&M-Commerce at the Alamodome. Kickoff for the 2012 home opener is slated for 1 p.m.