LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) Cole Kelley threw for 391 yards and three touchdowns and Southeastern Louisiana held off a late-charging McNeese 38-35 in a Southland Conference clash on Saturday.
Kelley was 36-for-49 passing and overcame an interception on his first pass attempt of the game. McNeese turned the pick into a touchdown four plays later when Stephon Henderson ran in from the 1.
Kelley knotted the score at 7-7 with a 13-yard scoring toss to Nick Kovacs on the Lions next possession and, after a McNeese three-and-out, Kelley ran in from the 1.
Southeastern Louisiana (3-1, 1-0), ranked No. 15 in the FCS coaches poll, had scored 40 points in a school-record seven straight contests dating to last season. The Lions, ranked third in FCS with 554.7 yards of offense per game, gained 546 on Saturday.
McNeese (1-4, 0-2), after trailing by 17 at halftime, scored 28 points in the second half, pulling within 38-35 on Mason Pierce's run from the 3-yard line. The Cowboys tried an onside kick, but Southeastern Louisiana recovered and ran out the final 3:22, converting a fourth-and-1.
Pierce had six catches for 79 yards and two touchdowns. Cody Orgeron went 14-for-23 passing for 246 yards and three touchdowns. Orgeron also ran 13 times for 77 yards.
Until Saturday, the home team had won the previous seven meetings between the Lions and the Cowboys.
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