FCS Top 10 Roundup: Sam Houston State topples No. 4 McNeese State 38-22


Sam Houston State 38, No. 4 McNeese State 22

HUNTSVILLE, Texas — Jared Johnson ran for two touchdowns and threw for two more to lead Sam Houston State to a 38-22 upset victory against McNeese State on Saturday.

Sam Houston (3-3, 2-0 Southland Conference) jumped out to an early 14-0 lead and held on to knock off the Cowboys (3-2, 1-1) who were ranked No.

4 in the FCS national poll. SHSU was unranked.

Johnson, who rushed for 190 yards on 11 carries and threw for 192 yards, accounted for all but 104 of SHSU’s 486 total yards.

The Bearkats led 21-7 at the half following Johnson’s 73-yard scoring sprint with 2:14 remaining in the second quarter. Johnson passed to Yedidiah Louis for a 22-yard score to start the third and ran 67 yards for another score and a commanding 35-7 lead.

Daniel Sams rushed for 130 yards and one touchdown on 20 carries for the Cowboys.

No. 1 North Dakota State 38, No. 13 Southern Illinois

FARGO, N.D. — Top-ranked North Dakota State took a 10-0 lead and pulled away in the second half to beat No. 13 Southern Illinois 38-10 in a Missouri Valley Football Conference game on Saturday.

NDSU quarterback Carson Wentz passed for 174 yards and two touchdowns and John Crockett ran for 99 yards and a score as the Bison (6-0, 2-0 Missouri Valley Conference) extended their FCS-record winning streak to 30 games.

NDSU led 17-7 at the break. In a game between teams whose defenses dominate the second half, it figured that most of the scoring would be done before halftime. NDSU has outscored its opponents 102-10 in the second half while SIU (5-2, 2-1) had a 114-13 advantage coming into the game.

NDSU ran for 252 yards. Malcolm Agnew carried 21 times for 117 yards but was kept out of the end zone.

The Bison held SIU to 121 yards rushing and Mark Iannotti was 18-for-33 for 146 yards.

NDSU extended it a MVFC win streak to 14 games and its streak of scoreless fourth quarters to seven. It has won 17 consecutive home games.

No. 2 Eastern Washington 42, Southern Utah 30

CEDAR CITY, Utah — Jordan West, making his first start for injured All-American Vernon Adams, threw for three touchdowns and Mario Brown and Jalen Moore both rushed for more than 100 yards to lead Eastern Washington to a 42-30 win against Southern Utah on Saturday.

West completed 20 of 27 passes for 288 yards and an interception a week after Adams set the Big Sky Conference record by reaching 99 career touchdown passes and broke two bones in his right foot when the Eagles (6-1, 3-0) beat Idaho State. West connected with Kendrick Bourne for 29- and 15-yard touchdowns in the first half and Zach Wimberly for 15 in the second.

Brown had 134 yards and a touchdown for Eastern and Moore added 133 and two scores.

Ammon Olsen and Aaron Cantu combined for 434 passing yards for the Thunderbirds (1-6, 1-2) with Olsen notching two touchdowns.

EWU had a 568-513 edge in total offense.

No. 3 Coastal Carolina 40, Presbyterian 28

CLINTON, S.C. — Alex Ross threw for 258 yards and two touchdowns, including a 34-yarder to Bruce Mapp, and Coastal Carolina beat Presbyterian 40-28 on Saturday.

Mapp finished with 111 yards receiving for the Chanticleers (7-0, 1-0 Big South) and De’Angelo Henderson added 147 yards rushing and two TDs.

Demarcus Rouse ran 52 yards for a touchdown on Presbyterian’s first possession, giving the Blue Hose a 7-0 lead. After 13 consecutive points gave Costal Carolina a six-point lead at the half, Heys McMath found Kris Hurley from 3 yards out early in the third, pushing the Blue Hose to their second and final lead of the game. However Ross’ 34-yard strike to Mapp two minutes later gave the Chanticleers the lead for good.

Rouse finished with 145 yards to lead Presbyterian (3-3, 0-1). McMath added 215 yards and three scores through the air.

No. 5 Villanova 44, Rhode Island 21

PHILADELPHIA — John Robertson threw for four touchdowns and Chris Polony ran for another and Villanova beat Rhode Island 44-21 for its fifth consecutive win on Saturday.

Robertson was 13 of 16 for 249 yards passing, including TD strikes of 22 yards to Mike Burke, 44 and 14 yards to Poppy Livers, and 16 yards to Gary Underwood. Robertson led Villanova rushers with 61 yards on eight carries. Livers had seven catches for 113 yards.

Villanova held Rhode Island (0-6, 0-2 Colonial) to 50 yards rushing and shut out the Rams until 8:38 in the fourth quarter, when Jordan Sebastian scored on a 1-yard run and James Caparell hit Robbie Jackson with TD passes of 58 and 23 yards. Caparell was 22 of 33 for 249 yards passing.

The Wildcats (5-1, 3-0) outgained Rhode Island 473 to 336 and has scored more than 40 points in five consecutive games, a school record.

No. 6 New Hampshire 32, No. 11 William & Mary 3

DURHAM, N.H. — Andy Vailas threw for 276 yards and three touchdowns, two to Nico Steriti, and New Hampshire beat William & Mary 32-3 on Saturday.

Steriti added a rushing touchdown for New Hampshire (5-1, 3-1 Colonial). Vailas’ third touchdown pass was from 25-yards out to R.J. Harris, who led the Wildcats with 105 receiving on five catches.

Steve Cluley finished with 105 yards passing and Mikal Abdul-Saboor had 52 yards rushing to lead William & Mary (4-2, 1-1). The Tribe had 217 total yards.

New Hampshire jumped out to a 15-0 lead on touchdowns by Steriti and Harris before William & Mary put their only points on the board, coming on a 22-yard field goal by John Carpenter.

No. 8 Jacksonville State 27, No. 25 Tennessee State 20

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — DeMarcus James ran for two touchdowns and Jacksonville State won its fifth game in a row 27-20 against Tennessee State on Saturday.

James’ second touchdown put the Gamecocks (5-1, 3-0 Ohio Valley) ahead 20-3 in the third quarter. Troymaine Pope ran 19 yards to give Jacksonville State a 27-6 lead with 3:32 left in the third.

Michael German rallied the Tigers, throwing a 15-yard touchdown pass to Weldon Garlington and sneaking in from a yard out at the end of the third following a fumble recovery at the Gamecocks 11 to close within 27-20.

Both teams missed field goal attempts in the fourth quarter and Jermaine Hough’s interception of a 30-yard pass into the end zone with 6 seconds left settled the outcome.

There were 10 turnovers in a steady drizzle, six by Tennessee State. German had 364 yards passing, with 179 going to Garlington, but he threw four interceptions, two by Hough.

No. 9 Southestern Louisiana 61, Lamar 34

BEAUMONT, Texas — Bryan Bennett ran for three touchdowns and threw one more to lead Southeastern Louisiana to a 61-34 victory against Lamar on Saturday night.

Bennett had touchdown runs of 1 and 3 yards to give the Lions a 17-13 halftime lead. Xavier Roberson ran for a 75-yard touchdown and Bennett ran for a 64-yard score to stretch Southeastern Louisiana’s lead to 31-13 early in the third quarter. Bennett added a 16-yard touchdown pass to Jarrell Bennett in the fourth.

Bennett ran for 125 yards on 17 carries, and his 1,478 career yards now ranks 10th all-time at Southeastern Louisiana.

The Lions (5-2, 3-0 Southland Conference) have won 13 in a row against conference opponents.

Xavier Bethany scored on a 40-yard interception return, and Caleb Berry threw touchdown passes of 38 and 24 yards to lead Lamar (4-3, 1-2).

Western Illinois 30, No. 10 Youngstown State 24

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Trenton Norvell threw for 291 yards and four touchdown passes to lead Western Illinois to a 30-24 win against Youngstown State on Saturday night.

Jody Webb put Youngstown State up 17-14 at half with a 9-yard touchdown. But Western Illinois scored 16 unanswered. Joey Borsellino caught a touchdown from Norvell for 35 yards, then Norvell hit Hi-C Scott for a 3-yard score and Nathan Knuffman made a 23-yard field goal with 8:18 to play.

Webb’s second touchdown brought Youngstown State within six with 6:08 remaining in the game. Western Illinois was forced to punt on its next possession, but the Penguins pinned Youngstown State at the 7 with 40 seconds remaining.

Lance Lenoir caught eight passes for 132 yards and two touchdowns for Western Illinois. Webb ran for 80 yards on eight carries.

Western Illinois (3-4, 1-2 Missouri Valley) ended a three-game skid, while Youngstown State (4-2, 1-1) had its four-game winning streak snapped.

Scott Harrigan
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