New Hampshire knocks off Maine; Eastern Wash. edges Portland State
DURHAM, N.H. -- Nico Steriti rushed for 139 yards and had a 68-yard touchdown in No. 24 New Hampshire's 24-3 win against No. 4 Maine on Saturday.
Eight UNH (7-4, 6-2 Colonial Athletic Association) players took a handoff in the game -- totaling 213 yards. Three Wildcats completed a pass, with touchdown passes from Andy Vailas and Sean Goldrich.
New Hampshire forced two turnovers. The first coming on a Casey DeAndrade interception of Marcus Wasilewski in the second quarter, but New Hampshire was unable to capitalize after its 32-yard field goal was blocked. Shane McNeely sacked Wasilewski and forced a fumble that was recovered by Sean McCann. New Hampshire then went on a four-play, 20-yard drive, resulting in a Jimmy Giansante 6-yard TD reception for a 17-3 lead.
Maine's (10-2, 7-1) only points came on a 27-yard second-quarter field goal by Sean Decloux. The Bears' scoring drive was 10 plays and covered 72 yards.
FARGO, N.D. -- Sam Ojuri and John Crockett each gained more than 100 yards rushing and scored two TDs apiece as No. 1 North Dakota State capped an unbeaten regular season with a 42-0 shutout of South Dakota on Saturday and a likely No. 1 seed in the FCS playoffs.
The two-time national champion Bison (11-0, 8-0 Missouri Valley Football Conference) -- the only undefeated team in the FCS -- have won a third consecutive conference championship and are in the playoffs for the fourth year in a row. It is North Dakota State's first undefeated season since 1990.
Ojuri finished with more than 1,000 yards for the third season and Brock Jensen notched his FCS-record 44th victory with 230 yards passing and two TDs. Ryan Smith caught four passes for 111 yards and a TD.
South Dakota's (4-6, 3-5) Jordan Roberts gained 107 yards on 20 carries. Kevin Earl completed 10 of 26 passes for 101 yards but was intercepted twice.
MARTIN, Tenn. -- Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 477 yards and six touchdowns as No. 2 Eastern Illinois dominated Tennessee-Martin 70-22 on Saturday.
Garoppolo completed 26 of 46 attempts with Adam Drake pulling in 14 for 225 yards and three touchdowns. Jeff LePak grabbed seven passes for 196 yards and two touchdowns. Shepard Little rushed for 123 yards on 28 carries and scored two touchdowns.
Garoppolo threw for three touchdowns in the first quarter and had four touchdown tosses by halftime. He threw seven touchdown passes in a game against Illinois State earlier this season.
Eastern Illinois (11-1, 8-0 Ohio Valley Conference) clinched the OVC regular season championship with a 52-14 win against Jacksonville State last week and the 11 victories in a season is a school record.
UT-Martin (7-5, 5-3) did not score until Jarod Neal passed to Jeremy Butler from 28 yards out in the second quarter.
CHENEY, Wash. -- Vernon Adams' fifth touchdown pass with 31 seconds to play lifted No. 3 Eastern Washington to a wild 42-41 win against Portland State on Saturday night.
The Vikings (6-6, 3-5 Big Sky) had taken the lead on a Collin Ramierz pass to Victor Dean with a minute left but Marcus Kinsella missed the extra point.
Adams and the Eagles (10-2, 8-0) set a host of records in becoming the first team other than Montana to win an outright Big Sky title since EWU's 1997 title.
Adams set the conference record for TD passes (46) and the school record for passing yards (4,059) and total offense (4,550). Cooper Kupp, who had the game-winning TD on a 15-yard pass, earlier set a FCS record with a TD in his 12th consecutive game, erasing, among others, Randy Moss.
EWU scored the first TD but never led again until the final point.
TOWSON, Md. -- Terrance West rushed for three touchdowns and 100 yards to lead No. 5 Towson to a 28-17 victory against James Madison on Saturday.
West scored from 7 and 6 yards out in the first half. His 6-yard run with 11:44 remaining capped the scoring for Towson (10-2, 6-2 Colonial Athletic Association). West added three receptions for 30 yards.
Peter Athens threw a 35-yard touchdown pass to Connor Frazier to give Towson a 21-7 halftime lead. The Tigers have now scored a school-record 61 touchdowns, breaking the previous record of 57.
The win gives Towson its second FCS playoff berth in three years.
James Madison (6-6, 3-5) opened the scoring with a Michael Birdsong 29-yard TD pass to Anthony Rose. The Tigers then scored three unanswered touchdowns before a field goal, and a 46-yard punt return for a touchdown by Dae'Quan Scott pulled the Dukes within four in the third quarter.
BOZEMAN, Mont. -- Jordan Canada rushed for two touchdowns and Jordan Johnson passed for another as No. 6 Montana handled No. 13 Montana State 28-14 in the 113th meeting between these bitter rivals Saturday afternoon.
The Grizzlies (10-2, 6-2 Big Sky) held MSU to just 277 total yards. The Bobcats (7-5, 5-3) took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter on Shawn Johnson's 82-yard punt return, but were unable to move the ball consistently until the fourth quarter.
Montana scored on Canada's 7-yard burst to forge a halftime tie. In the third quarter, Travon Van gave the Grizzlies a 14-7 edge with a 3-yard run. Johnson later found Clay Pierson for a 20-yard score to make it 21-7.
MSU answered with another Johnson score, but Canada put the game out of reach with a 9-yard dash that finished the scoring. Canada finished with 71 yards rushing. Johnson completed 23 of 35 passes for 250 yards.
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Connor Shaw passed for a touchdown and ran for a score in less than a quarter of work and No. 12 (FBS) South Carolina scored the most points in Steve Spurrier's nine seasons as head coach in a 70-10 victory against No. 7 (FCS) Coastal Carolina on Saturday.
The news wasn't all bad for Coastal Carolina (10-2). The Chanticleers learned before halftime they shared a Big South championship and earned the league's FCS playoff bid.
Liberty's 56-14 victory against Charleston Southern locked up the automatic playoff spot for the Chants, its second in a row under head coach Joe Moglia.
Coastal Carolina managed just 39 yards the first three times it had the ball and trailed 28-0 in the first quarter.
Coastal Carolina finally broke through for points late in the half, with quarterback Alex Ross scrambling free of defenders on fourth down and connecting with Lorenzo Taliaferro for a 1-yard touchdown pass.
Moglia, the one-time CEO at TD Ameritrade, pulled many starters in the second half to rest for the playoffs, something he said he'd do if things got out of hand.
Coastal finished with 294 yards and Taliaferro, who was fifth in the FCS rushing with 1,466 yards and had 23 touchdowns, was held to 21 yards.
BEAUMONT, Texas -- Kelvin Bennett and Marcus Wiltz ran for a combined 251 yards on 43 carries as McNeese State ground out a 42-38 win against Lamar in the ''Battle of the Border'' rivalry game Saturday.
The Cowboys (10-2, 6-1 Southland) finished with 10 wins for the first time since 2007.
Lamar (5-7, 2-5 Southland) held a 31-20 lead at halftime and clung to a 38-36 lead going into the final period.
The Cardinals stopped McNeese State on fourth-and-goal at the 1 early in the fourth quarter, but the Cowboys drove 89 yards in nine plays in the final 4:15 to take the lead. Diontae Spencer scored from 16 yards out with 58 seconds left for the win.
Bennett finished with 22 carries for 162 yards and a touchdown. Wiltz carried 21 times for 89 yards and a score.
Cody Stroud was 21 of 41 for 330 yards and four touchdowns for Lamar.
CONWAY, Ark. -- Ryan Howard threw for 349 yards and four touchdowns to lead Central Arkansas to a 49-31 win against No. 9 Sam Houston State on Saturday.
Central Arkansas (7-5, 4-3 Southland) finishes the conference season tied for third with the Bearkats (8-4, 4-3 Southland) behind both Southeastern Louisiana and McNeese State.
The loss kept Sam Houston State winless on the road. The Bearkats were 7-0 at home this season and picked up a win against Stephen F. Austin in the Piney Woods Shootout in Houston.
Willie Matthews had eight catches for 55 yards and two touchdowns for Central Arkansas and Dezmin Lewis caught five passes for 74 yards and two scores.
Although he did not start after suffering a shoulder sprain last week, Brian Bell came off the bench to pass for 327 yards and four touchdowns, completing his career as the Bearkats' all-time leader in passing and total offense.
HAMMOND, La. -- Bryan Bennett passed for two touchdowns and ran for another Thursday night and No. 10 Southeastern Louisiana ran past Nicholls State in a 52-27 win.
Nicholls State (4-8, 1-6) led 14-13 at halftime on TD runs of 9 yards and 8 yards by Tuskani Figaro before Southeastern Louisiana's offense hit high gear.
Southeastern Louisiana (10-2, 7-0 Southland Football League) amassed 702 yards of total offense, including 377 yards rushing, with TD runs of 53 yards by Devante Scott, 2 yards by Kody Sutton and 3 yards by Xavier Roberson. Bennett was 16 of 25 for 273 yards passing and had a game-high 120 yards rushing on 13 carries. Seth Sebastian kicked three field goals.
Nicholls' Reggie Wilson scored on a 9-yard run and caught an 11-yard pass from Beaux Hebert in the fourth quarter for the Colonels' final score.