New Hampshire football defeats James Madison, 20-17

DURHAM, N.H. - Mike Granieri (Linwood, N.J.) completed 16 of 29 passes for 156 yards and two touchdowns to lead the University of New Hampshire football team to Saturday afternoon's 20-17 Atlantic 10 victory against James Madison University at Cowell Stadium.

UNH won its second consecutive game to improve to 4-6 overall and 2- 5 in Atlantic 10. JMU is now 5-5, 4-4.

With New Hampshire leading 20-17, the Dukes faced 4th-and-14 at their own 24 with 1:17 remaining. Matt LeZotte's pass intended for Alan Harrison was broken up by Giovanni Benson (North Andover, Mass.). UNH, which recorded seven turnovers with four fumbles and three interceptions, took over on downs and ran out the clock to secure the win.

The Wildcats opened the game with a 68-yard drive that culminated with an eight-yard touchdown pass from Granieri to Jon Williams (Rochester, N.Y.) at 11:11. UNH then converted a pair of James Madison turnovers into 10 points and a 17-0 advantage.

Following a George Peterson (West Rutland, Vt.) fumble recovery at the JMU 31, Granieri connected with R.J. Harvey (Albany, N.Y.) on a six-yard scoring play to give the Wildcats a 14-0 lead at 8:46. A Baron Flenory (Pittsburgh, Pa.) interception gave UNH possession at the JMU 37 and led to a 29-yard field goal by Connor McCormick (Forty Fort, Pa.) at 5:40.

James Madison trimmed the deficit to 17-3 at 12:30 of the second quarter on a 31-yard field goal by David Rabil. McCormick connected on a 31-yard field goals to reestablish at 17 points, 20-3, with 3:03 to play in the half. JMU marched 80 yards on the ensuing possession and Maurice Fenner scored on a 1-yard run with no time remaining on the clock to pull the visitors within 20-10.

Following a scoreless third quarter, Rabil's 47-yard wind-aided field goal attempt 46 seconds into the fourth quarter fell short of the crossbar.

James Madison capitalized on a UNH special teams miscue midway through the quarter to close within 20-17. Following a high snap, UNH punter Josh Polgar (Rutland, Vt.) kicked the ball backwards out of the end zone, which gave JMU possession at the UNH 4. Fenner's four-yard run trimmed the deficit to three points at 7:53. He finished with 19 carries for 57 yards.

New Hampshire's defensive effort was led by Chris Robinson (Medford, N.Y.), who finished with 16 tackles (five solo), an interception and a half-sack. Peterson forced a fumble, recovered two fumbles and had 10 tackles, four of which were for a loss, and 1.5 sacks.

UNH's Harvey led all rushers with 59 yards on 17 carries. Williams was the team's leading receiver with 68 yards on six catches.

LeZotte was 12 of 21 for 94 yards with two interceptions . Jayson Cooke was 1-for-2 for 32 yards with an interception.

New Hampshire returns to action Nov. 15 (1 p.m.) at William & Mary. The next Wildcat home game is the regular-season finale, Nov. 22 vs. Maine. Game time at Cowell Stadium is noon.

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