Grace, Northern Iowa KO Maine in first round
Pat Grace threw two long touchdown passes to Jarred Herring to spark a second-quarter burst that carried Northern Iowa to a 40-15 victory over Maine yesterday in Cedar Falls, Iowa, in the first round of the Football Championship Subdivision playoffs.
Derrick Law ran for two touchdowns and Corey Lewis also ran for a TD for the third-seeded Panthers (11-2), who'll host New Hampshire in a quarterfinal Saturday.
Maine (8-5) stayed with the Panthers until UNI scored 16 points in just five minutes late in the first half to break a 7-7 tie.
Herring got behind the defense and Grace hit him in stride for a 42-yard touchdown to make it 14-7.
Northern Iowa got a safety when Maine quarterback Michael Brusko slipped and fell in the end zone. That came after two false starts and a sack moved Maine back to its 2-yard line.
Three plays after Maine's free kick, Grace looked as if he was going to run, then noticed Herring running free and hit him with a 55-yard touchdown pass, making it 23-7 with 2:51 left in the half.
Grace finished 15 of 24 for 229 yards.
Maine capitalized on Tyrell Jones's punt block to tie the game at 7 on Derek Session's 1-yard run at the 10:16 mark of the second quarter. But the Black Bears didn't score again until Brusko threw an 10-yard pass to Session with 5:49 left.
Villanova 55, Colgate 28 - Matt Szczur returned the opening kickoff 91 yards for a score and added two more touchdowns as the host Wildcats cruised.
Villanova (10-2) will face top-ranked James Madison Saturday in a quarterfinal. Jordan Scott scored three touchdowns for Patriot League champion Colgate (9-3).
James Madison 38, Wofford 35 - Rodney Landers passed for three touchdowns and rushed for 166 yards and another score to lead the Dukes (11-1) in Harrisonburg, Va.
Landers scored the winning touchdown on a 6-yard run with 3:21 remaining.
Appalachian St. 37, S. Carolina St. 21 - At Boone, N.C., Armanti Edwards passed for a school-record 433 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for another score to lead the second-ranked Mountaneers.
Appalachian State (11-2), the three-time defending FCS champion, will host Richmond in the quarterfinals.
Montana 31, Texas St. 13 - Chase Reynolds rushed for a career-high 233 yards and two second-half touchdowns to power the fifth-ranked Griz to the win at home.
Texas State (8-5) raced to a 10-0 lead before Montana (12-1) scored on its final possession of the first half and its first two possessions of the second half.
Richmond 38, E. Kentucky 10 - Eric Ward threw for 245 yards, Tre Gray had a pair of touchdown receptions, and the Spiders (10-3) took advantage of four turnovers to easily defeat the visiting Colonels (8-4).