CLINTON -- One can hardly blame Charleston Southern head football coach Jay Mills for feeling a little relief that the 2011 season is over.
Charleston Southern finished off an 0-11 season with a 45-14 loss at Presbyterian College on Saturday, ending a season that was wrought with injuries and inconsistency.
As has been the case all season, effort was not a problem on Saturday. Mills says the Bucs simply ran out of capable bodies down the stretch.
"We have had, and will have, more surgeries this season than we have had in the last eight years combined," lamented Mills, who coached his 100th game at CSU on Saturday.
"Our players gave a great effort again today. I can't remember having a team that showed the perseverance and character that this team showed this season. I have coached teams with a lot better records that did not have the effort that this team had. It's unfortunate that we did not have any success on the scoreboard."
Presbyterian dominated from the outset, taking a 14-0 lead after one quarter and cruising to a 24-7 halftime lead.
The Blue Hose outgained the Bucs 516-270 in yardage. Presbyterian's Ryan Singer had 212 yards passing, while Lance Byrd had 133 yards rushing.
Byrd's 1-yard run and Singer's 2-yard run put Presbyterian up, 14-0, in the first quarter. After Teddy Allen's 2-yard run cut the lead to seven and gave the Bucs hope, the Blue Hose got a field goal and a 65-yard pass from Singer to Michael Ruff to open up a 17-point advantage.
Less than a minute into the third quarter, Singer hit Jeremiah McKie on a 58-yard TD pass to put the game away at 31-7.
Mills was forced to use two quarterbacks, both injured, during the game. Malcolm Dixon, who started the first seven games before suffering an injury, started but was hurt during the course of the game.
Richard Mounce, who injured an ankle last week, was not expected to play but was forced into action in the second quarter. He completed only 2 of 17 pass attempts and threw three interceptions.
"Both of those guys were basically playing on one leg and were unable to finish throws, which led to the interceptions," said Mills. "We just ran out of bullets today. It might sound like an excuse, but it's fact. We were only able to practice one day (with contact) this week because we feared getting more injured. It's something we hope we never have to experience again."