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FCS Football Playoffs Quarterfinal Recap

2017 FCS Football Playoffs

This year’s FCS Football Playoff quarterfinal matchups proved one thing. The competition this year is fierce and the games are getting tighter. There were two blowouts and then there were two games that came down to the wire. One streak was broken, while another one remained intact. It was a good week for FCS football with the semi-finals poised to be an even better week. Here’s a recap of the FCS Football Playoffs quarter final matchups.

James Madison Beats Weber State on Last Second Field Goal to Win 31-28:

The Dukes went up early on the Wildcats on Friday night, but Cantwell brought the Wildcats back to take the lead 28-20 in the fourth quarter. Riley Stapleton came out of nowhere for JMU and had a huge receiving day with 189 yards on eight catches. Including a 40-yard td catch that tied the game after Trai Sharp ran into the end zone for the two-point conversion. The Dukes forced a 3-and-out on the Wildcat offense and drove to the Weber 30-yard line. Ethan Ratke came in and nailed a career best, 46-yard field goal as time expired for a 31-28 win and pushed the Dukes into the FCS semi-finals. Quarterback Bryan Schor threw for 359 yards and Marcus Marshall led the ground assault with 128 yards and two touchdown.

JMU Football

Ratke uses his foot to get James Madison to the semi-finals

North Dakota State Pounces Wofford 42-10:

The Terriers got on the board first in this game, but their lead wouldn’t last for long. Connor Wentz caught a 48-yard pass from Easton Stick and the Bison didn’t look back. NDSU took a 35-10 lead into half-time and didn’t push it for the second half of the game. They didn’t need to as the Bison defense held Wofford to just 177 yards of total offense. They also allowed the Terriers to convert just one third-down. Stick went 11 for 16 passing, with 184 yards and four total touchdowns. Bruce Anderson added 62 yards on the ground and two touchdowns. The Bison also won the time of possession battle, having the ball for over 35 minutes.

NDSU Football

Stick runs in for the score, and then out of the FargoDome.

South Dakota State Dominates New Hampshire 56-14:

The Jackrabbits pitched a shutout leading the Wildcats 28-0 at the half. They added another 28 points in the second half to roll into the FCS semi-finals. Taryn Christion had a solid offensive day with 190 yards through the air and 48 yards on the ground with three total touchdowns. Isaac Wallace led SDSU with 79 yards on the ground and two touchdowns. Mikey Daniel and Jake Wieneke added the other rushing scores with Wieneke breaking for a 48-yard td run. The senior also had 9 catches for 142 yards, and two touchdown receptions. Cade Johnson turned on the jets for a 99-yard kickoff return. Kieran Presley had 7 catches for 133 yards and a touchdown for New Hampshire.

South Dakota State Football

Wieneke with a superb one-handed grab.

Sam Houston State Holds Off Kennesaw State 34-27:

The Bearkats took a 24-10 lead into the half, but the Owls were able to cut the lead to seven twice in the fourth quarter. Chandler Burks made it a 27-20 game with a 4-yard touchdown run and the Bearkats retaliated with a Yedidiah Lewis 15-yard td catch from Jeremiah Briscoe. T.J. Reed caught a 23-yard td reception for KSU to again, cut the lead to seven. Dustin Clabough picked off Briscoe to give the Owls another shot at tying the game. The Bearkat defense was able to make a huge defensive stand from their own 11-yard line to cause KSU to unsuccessfully convert on fourth down. Briscoe had 316 yards and three touchdowns through the air. Louis had 123 yards on nine catches and two of those touchdowns. Nathan Stewart had a 61-yard td catch as well. Corey Avery had 129 yards and a touchdown on the ground. The Owls put up 352 rushing yards with Shaquil Terry leading the way with 120 yards on five carries. Darnell Holland added 97 yards and a touchdown.

Sam Houston State Football

Louis tip-toes, weaves, and speeds into the end zone for a 15-yard score.


FCS Football Playoffs Semi-Final Matchups:

(6) Sam Houston State @ North Dakota StateĀ Friday, Dec. 15th 8pm (ESPN2)

(5) South Dakota State @ (1) James MadisonĀ Saturday, Dec. 16th 4:30 pm (ESPNU)

Follow us here at Press Box Sports for an in depth preview of each game for this coming week.