6-3 , 4-2
6-3 , 4-2
Game recap: Soccer |
Kingston, RI – The University of Maine football team saw its 14-game winning streak over Rhode Island come to an end after losing a 26-22 final to the No. 23 Rams on Saturday after- midday.
Maine, who took a 10-0 lead and led 22-20 with 9:33 to go, couldn’t hold on to the contest lead.
The Black Bears controlled possession time with a season-best 35:26 on offense while going 7-for-16 on third down and converting a pair of fourth downs. Maine extended its streak to four straight games with no turnovers and finished 3-for-3 in the red zone, as the Black Bears have now scored in 17 straight trips to the red zone.
Elijah Barnwell rushed for a season-high 98 yards, including the 1,000th of his career, with a touchdown. Zavier Scott added 26 rushing yards to go along with four catches for 33 yards. Joe Fagnano finished the afternoon 12 of 27 for 126 yards and a touchdown with Rohan Jones finding the end zone on the touchdown reception for his first career scoring.
Brian Lee Jr. led Maine in tackles with seven saves, including one for loss. Four other Black Bears finished with five tackles, including Kahzir “Buggs” Brown who added one passing deflection to his team-leading total in the category.
For the first time in their last five outings, the Black Bears were able to find the scoreboard first. Fagnano and the offense administered a 20-play opener spanning 9:38, capped by a 29-yard Cody Williams field goal.
Maine extended its lead to 10-0 midway through the second quarter with another impressive drive, rushing for 91 yards on 15 plays. Fagnano’s 22-yard strike against Moss moved Maine into midfield. After Barnwell picked up 11 yards on a third-and-10, converting third down for the third time on the drive, the graduate running back entered the end zone for a two-yard score.
The Rams responded two drives later as Kasim Hill connected with Ed Lee on a 63-yard touchdown with 1:15 left in the half.
Zavier Scott put Maine in good position on the field late in the second quarter when he took the kickoff that followed 58 yards to Rhode Island 33. Fagnano and the offense moved the ball to the 28 of the Rams before Williams took a field goal from 46 yards to send Maine into the half with a 13-7 advantage.
Rhode Island took its first lead of the game in the third quarter with Hill scoring seven rushing yards.
Maine responded with 2:20 left in the third. After forcing a Rhode Island three-and-out, the Black Bears took over with great field position at the Ram 42. Maine went down at the Rhode Island 24, using a creative offense out of the wildcat formation, before Fagnano floats away. an 18-yard touchdown reception to Jones. For Jones, it marked his first career touchdown. Maine’s two-point conversion try failed as the Black Bears led, 19-14, late in the third.
The choppy third quarter continued as Hill hit Lee for a 47-yard gain on the Maine sideline. Following a face mask penalty, the Rams would find themselves inside the red zone. Two plays later, Hill rushed for a score from nine yards out. The Black Bears stopped Rhode Island on its two-run try, limiting the Rams’ lead to just one, 20-19.
Maine regained the lead with 9:33 left in the fourth quarter when Williams converted his third field goal of the afternoon, this one from 39 yards.
Rhode Island retook the lead from Maine on a one-yard dive by Marques DeShields with 7:17 on the clock. The Rams attempted a two-point conversion again, but a pass deflection by Brown halted the attempt, keeping Rhode Island’s lead at 26-22.
Maine couldn’t move the chains in their last practice, forcing the Black Bears to return to Rhode Island. The Rams converted on third down and were able to run on time, earning a 26-22 victory.
The Black Bears continue CAA action next weekend when they travel to face UAlbany at noon.