DURHAM, N.H. - Brian Westbrook scored three touchdowns and amassed 242 all-purpose yards to break the NCAA I-AA career all-purpose yardage record and lead the Villanova University football team to Saturday afternoon's 38-35 Atlantic 10 victory against the University of New Hampshire at Cowell Stadium.
Westbrook who entered the game with 8,362 all-purpose yards, surpassed the mark previously held by UNH's Jerry Azumah (8,376) on a 14-yard run at 9:32 of the first quarter. Westbrook finished the game with 184 yards on 36 carries, six receptions for four yards, one punt return for 10 yards and 42 kickoff return yards.
Trailing 38-35 with under two minutes to play, UNH defensive back Bo Geer (Jewitt City, Conn.) forced a Westbrook fumble at the Villanova 41-yard line and teammate Kane Anderson (Bomoseen, Vt.) recovered the ball at the 41.
UNH (4-5, 2-5) drove the ball to the 17 but, facing 4th-and-6, Ryan Day's (Manchester, N.H.) pass to David Bailey (Bronx, N.Y.) was knocked down by Clarence Curry at the goal line.
VU's Murle Sango set career highs in both receptions (14) and receiving yards (152). His second quarter 9-yard touchdown reception from Brett Gordon (31-40, 330 yards) gave 'Nova a 19-7 lead.
Day finished with 329 passing yards on 24-for-38 passing and Stephan Lewis (Coatesville, Pa.) rushed for 94 yards on 19 carries.
Villanova (6-2, 5-1) built a 13-0 lead on a pair of 1-yard runs by Westbrook. UNH closed within 13-7 on a 5-yard pass play from Day to R.J. Harvey (Albany, N.Y.). The visiting Wildcats took a 22-7 lead into halftime on a 25-yard field goal by Casey Hannon.
UNH trimmed the deficit to 22-14 on a Michael Taylor (Allentown, Pa.) 14-yard reception at 6:57 of the third quarter. Another Hannon field goal extended VU's lead to 25-14 at the end of three quarters.
A 15-yard Day-to-Lewis strike made the score 25-20 just 11 seconds into the fourth quarter. 'Nova responded 2:20 later on Westbrook's third score of the day. UNH trimmed the deficit to 32-27 on a four-yard run by Lewis at 9:35 but the visitors again had a quick reply with a score by Matt Chila at 7:21 to regain a double-digit advantage at 38-27.
New Hampshire closed within 38-35 on a 1-yard pass play from Day to Shaun Diner (Montreal, Quebec) with 3:13 remaining in the game.
New Hampshire returns to action Nov. 10 at Northeastern University.
Kickoff is noon. The next Wildcat home game is the Nov. 17 season finale against Maine. Start time at Cowell Stadium is noon.