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Merch Madness
Courtesy:JMUSports.com Release:09/27/2008
Courtesy: JMUSports.com

ORONO, Maine, Sept. 27, 2008 – Senior quarterback Rodney Landers (Virginia Beach, Va./Tallwood) ran for 156 yards and a touchdown and threw for 108 yards, and sophomore tailback Griff Yancey (Glen Allen, Va./Hermitage) scored twice as James Madison pulled away in the final quarter for a 24-10 Colonial Athletic Association football win at Maine Saturday.


Landers ran 27 times and had his third 100-yard rushing game of the season.  He scored on a 30-yard run in the third quarter to give JMU a 10-3 lead and completed seven of 13 passes.


Yancey carried 10 times and scored on runs of 12 and 30 yards after Maine pulled into a 10-10 tie early during the final period.


The win was JMU’s fourth straight and raised the Dukes’ overall record to 4-1 and their CAA mark to 2-0.  Maine fell to 2-3 overall and to 0-2 in the CAA.  JMU entered the game ranked No. 1 nationally the Football Championship Subdivision coaches’ poll and second in The Sports Network’s FCS poll.


The victory was JMU Coach Mickey Matthews’ 68th in 10 JMU seasons and made him the Dukes’ all-time winningest coach.  He is 68-45 at JMU, and he moved past Challace McMillin (1972-84) on the program’s coaching wins list.  McMillin was JMU’s first football coach, and he compiled a 67-56-1 record in 13 seasons.


JMU went in front to stay Saturday on the series after Maine pulled into the 10-10 tie but not before the Black Bears apparently had gotten possession with their second on-sides kick of the game.  However, Maine was called for illegally touching the ball on the play (interfering with JMU’s opportunity to field the kick), giving JMU a first down at the Maine 35 following a 15-yard penalty.


The Dukes scored in three plays.  Landers ran for 11 and 12 yards to open the drive, and Yancey covered the final 12 yards with 12:21 to play.


JMU held Maine without a first down on the next series and put together an 11-play, 85-yard scoring drive that used 6:27 off the clock to seal the victory.  Yancey covered the final 30 yards, scoring with 3:39 to play.


The teams battled to 3-3 halftime tie with JMU compiling 173 yards and Maine 159 during the opening two periods.


Maine scored first, taking a 3-0 lead on a 27-yard Brian Harvey field goal with 2:53 left in the first quarter.  The Black Bears moved 56 yards in nine plays to set up the score.


JMU tied the score 3-3 at the 8:53 mark of the second quarter on a 26-yard field goal by senior placekicker Dave Stannard (Midlothian, Va./Clover Hill).  The Dukes moved 69 yards in 12 plays to set up the kick.


JMU went up 10-3 with 4:18 left in the third quarter on Landers’ 30-yard touchdown run to cap a four-play, 82-yard series.  Landers ran for four and eight yards before hitting senior tailback Eugene Holloman (Virginia Beach, Va./Bayside) with a 40-yard pass to the Maine 30.


Maine pulled into a 10-10 tie with 13:23 to play on halfback Derek Session’s 35-yard run.  The Bears had taken possession on the JMU 43 following a 37-yard JMU punt, and they scored on their second play.


JMU finished with 427 yards of total offense (319 rushing, 108 passing) and Maine with 283 yards (115 rushing, 168 passing).


The Dukes intercepted three passes, and senior free safety Marcus Haywood (Williamsburg, Va./Bruton) had his second-two-interception game of the season.


Senior defensive end Hassan Abdul-Wahid (Centreville, Va./Westfield) led JMU in tackles with eight, including three unassisted and 1.5 quarterback sacks.


JMU returns to Bridgeforth Stadium/Zane Showker Field next Saturday (Oct. 4) to meet CAA foe Hofstra at 1:30 p.m. in its annual Family Weekend game.


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