Richmond football routs Towson, earns AP Top 25 vote

By Chris Shores

A 42-14 road win by the Richmond football team over Towson last Saturday earned it a vote in the Associated Press Top 25 poll. The Spiders are the first Football Championship Subdivision team to be recognized by the poll since Appalachian State was recognized in late 2007 and the third in history.

The Tigers (2-6, 1-4 CAA) held their own against the Spiders (8-0, 6-0 Colonial Athletic Association) for the first 37 minutes of play. Down 14-13 with just over eight minutes left to play in the third quarter, Richmond gave the ball to Justin Forte who scored from 10 yards out for his fifth rushing touchdown of the season.

The Spiders connected on a two-point conversion attempt and then scored twice in the next two minutes. Kendall Gaskins ran for a touchdown following a fumble by Tigers quarterback Tommy Chroniger on the Towson three-yard line. On the next drive, Richmond’s Tremayne Graham intercepted Chroniger’s pass and then returned the ball 32 yards for the score.

In total, Richmond scored 29 unanswered points after surrendering the lead in the third quarter.

The Spiders’ streak of 17 consecutive wins is second in the nation only to Florida, with 18. But to extend the streak, Richmond will have to defeat its toughest opponent yet, Villanova, in its homecoming match next Saturday.

JMU earns first conference win

James Madison collected its first conference win of the season with a 20-8 win in Delaware. The Dukes (3-5, 1-4 CAA) pulled off the victory despite allowing three offensive turnovers and turning the ball over downs twice.

The Blue Hens (5-3, 3-3 CAA) fared similarly on offense. Quarterback Pat Devlin threw interceptions twice in the game and went down in eight sacks thanks to James Madison’s defense.

The first-half saw only one score: a 34-yard field goal by Delaware placekicker Jon Striefsky.

In the third quarter, the Dukes first put points on the board in the form of a 12-yard run by quarterback Justin Thorpe. He threw a seven-yard passing touchdown later in the quarter to Charlie Newman. The redshirt freshman threw for a career high 262 yards and posted an impressive 73 percent passer completion rating.

The Blue Hens rode a three-game win streak and were ranked 16th coming into their homecoming game against JMU. The loss is their second at home this season. They host one more conference game, a matchup against Hofstra next week before playing at Navy and Villanova to close out the season.

UNH routs Northeastern

After playing three close games – two narrow wins against Hofstra and Villanova and a loss to Massachusetts – New Hampshire’s offense returned to the dominant play it displayed earlier in the season. The Wildcats accumulated 461 yards – 281 of them coming on the ground – in a 48-21 rout against Northeastern.

The Huskies (1-8, 1-4 CAA) had plenty of chances as they controlled the game clock, 37 minutes to 23, but could not stop the rushing attack of senior Chad Kackert, who ran for 176 yards and scored two touchdowns.

UNH (7-1, 4-1 CAA) broke the game open with a three-touchdown second quarter. One of those scores came on a 64-yard run by Sean Jellison.

The Huskies also saw an impressive performance from their running back, junior John Griffin, who ran for 132 yards and recorded his second touchdown of the season.

The Wildcats have three conference games left including two home matches. Next week, they will face Rhode Island (1-7, 0-5 CAA) at home. A key conference matchup at William & Mary (7-1, 4-1 CAA) will occur the week after.

Meanwhile, the Huskies will travel to Massachusetts this Saturday before hosting Hofstra on Nov. 14.

Chris Shores can be reached at [email protected]