HARRISONBURG, Va. - James Madison scored first in a close overtime game, however Maine responded quickly and Christopher Treister's two-point conversion run clenched a 25-24 win at Bridgeforth Stadium/Zane Showker field on Saturday night.
The loss dropped the Dukes to 4-2 overall and 2-1 in the Colonial Athletic Association. Maine improved to 4-1 overall and 2-0 in the conference.
In a tie game for the majority of the second half JMU took the lead on Cameron Starke's (Halifax, Va./Halifax County) 32-yard field goal with 2:06 remaining in the game. Maine then marched quickly down the field and knotted the game again at 17-17 on a 34-yard field goal to send the game into overtime.
Maine won the toss and elected to defend first. Jordan Anderson (Chantilly, Va./Westfield) rushed six straight times to get it to the one yard line before Jace Edwards (Midland, Texas/Robert E. Lee) went the final yard for a rushing touchdown.
On Maine's third play of its possession, quarterback Warren Smith found Justin Perillo for an eight-yard pass in the right corner of the end zone. On the conversion attempt, Treister lined up by himself behind the center with the line offset to the far left. He rushed to his right and went head-over-heels into the end zone for the game-winner.
James Madison outrushed the Black Bears with 304 rushing yards on 51 carries. The running backs for the Dukes averaged six yards per rush compared to the Black Bears three yards per rush.
Anderson had his second straight career-high-rushing game with 212 yards. The last time the Dukes had a single player rush over 200 yards was Rodney Landers with 206 yards on September 13, 2008 against Massachusetts. Anderson's 212 yards is also the seventh all-time rushing high for the Dukes and is the most since Curtis Keaton had 237 against Connecticut in 1999.
With 6:41 left in the first quarter, the Dukes quickly got on the board with the first play of their second possession. On his first carry of the day, redshirt sophomore Anderson burst through a hole, broke a late tackle attempt and scampered for a career-long 80-yard touchdown. Starke completed the point-after attempt, making the score 7-0 in favor of James Madison.
Maine put up points in the middle of the second quarter after putting together a 14-play, 79-yard drive over seven minutes. The drive culminated as Smith hooked up with wide receiver Maurice McDonald for a 5-yard scoring pass. Kicker Brian Harvey's point after was good and the game was tied at seven midway through the second quarter.
On the next possession, JMU started on its own 40 after a kickoff out of bounds and took advantage of the good field position, going 60 yards in just eight plays. Redshirt sophomore running back Dae'Quan Scott (Staunton, Va./Robert E. Lee) took it the final four yards and Starke again was good on the PAT, making it 14-7 Madison with just over four minutes to play in the half
The Black Bears didn't let the Dukes lead long, getting into the end zone on their next drive to tie the game back up with 45 seconds left in the half. After a key 18-yard run by Smith on third-and-seven from the JMU 22, running back Terrel Walker scored on the next play with a four-yard run. Harvey hit the point after and the game went into the halftime break tied at 14.
After a scoreless third and majority of the fourth quarter, the Dukes ended the scoring drought and got back on the board, taking the lead with a little over two minutes left in the game. The Dukes' scoring drive took almost seven minutes from the clock and ended with a 32-yard field goal by Starke.
On Maine's next possession, the Black Bears made it back on the scoreboard quickly on a drive that lasted only a little over a minute. The entire drive covered 47 yards and ended with a 34-yard field goal made by Harvey. The field goal tied up the score and gave the Dukes their first home overtime game since November 16, 2002 against William & Mary.
In overtime, James Madison started with the ball on the Maine 25-yard line and in seven plays made it into the end zone with a final rush by Edwards. The PAT by Starke was good and Maine received ball on the JMU 25-yard line. On the third play, the Black Bears' quarterback, Smith, threw a completed eight-yard pass to Justin Perillo into the end zone. Maine faked the PAT and Treister took a direct snap, rushing into the end zone for two points and a 25-24 Maine victory.
Edwards threw 13-for-17 for 98 yards and added 20 yards rushing. Freshman wide receiver DeAndre' Smith (District Heights, Md./Wise) led the team in receiving yards at 26 through a total of five catches.
On the defense, redshirt sophomore linebacker Stephon Robertson (Alexandria, Va/Edison) led the team in tackles, racking up a total of 12, while redshirt senior Pat Williams (Virginia Beach, Va./First Colonial) closely followed with 10.
Smith finished 28-for-40 and 295 yards passing with two touchdowns through the air for the Black Bears. Perillo had 101 yards on nine catches while McDonald also had nine catches for 67 yards.
JMU ends its streak of three at home next Saturday, October 15 as it hosts Villanova at 1:30 p.m. for Family Weekend.