Durham, New Hampshire. (Tribe Athletics)- The No. 19/17 William & Mary football team fell at New Hampshire, 21-12, on a rainy Saturday afternoon at Wildcat Stadium.
Although W&M (2-3, 0-2) forced three turnovers in the first quarter, it was unable to capitalize off the miscues and trailed 7-6 at halftime. After a scoreless third quarter, the Wildcats (3-2, 2-0) pulled away with two touchdowns early in the fourth quarter en route to securing a homecoming victory.
Senior running back Kendell Anderson led the Tribe with 168 rushing yards on 25 carries and a touchdown, while junior wideout Daniel Kuzjak recorded his first career touchdown catch. Anderson’s impressive effort marked the eighth 100-yard rushing performance of his career.
Defensively, redshirt freshman linebacker Nate Atkins and senior linebacker Stephen Lubnow totaled 11 and 10 tackles, respectively, while redshirt freshman safety Corey Parker recovered a pair of fumbles. Senior cornerback Trey Reed also came up big with an interception, marking the second consecutive game in which he has recorded a pick.
UNH outgained W&M, 370-235, and held the Tribe to just 61 passing yards and 3 of 13 on third down situations. Most of the Wildcats’ yardage came on the ground, as they piled up 252 yards on 56 carries.
W&M took an early 6-0 lead with a 36-yard touchdown run by Anderson, which came just two plays after Reed intercepted UNH quarterback Trevor Knight near midfield and returned it to the Wildcats’ 39-yard line.
The touchdown was W&M’s lone score off UNH’s three first quarter turnovers – all of which gave the Tribe starting field position in Wildcats territory. The other two opportunities ended with a 32-yard missed field goal by redshirt freshman kicker Kris Hooper and an interception by senior quarterback Steve Cluley.
UNH’s only score of the opening half came on a 28-yard touchdown run by Knight on a fourth-and-9 with 4:37 left in the second quarter.
The Tribe had a chance to reclaim the lead midway through the third quarter, but Hooper missed a 35-yard field goal.
New Hampshire pulled away with a pair of touchdowns early in the fourth quarter, coming on a 1-yard run by tailback Dalton Crossan and a 12-yard pass from Knight to Anthony Pante.
W&M answered the second scoring drive with a 9-yard touchdown pass from Cluley to Kuzjak on a fourth-and-goal with 6:31 remaining. However, W&M was unable to get the ball back as UNH ran out the clock.
Crossan led the Wildcats with 98 rushing yards on 27 carries, while Knight finished with 95 yards on 16 carries.
The Tribe will return to action when it travels to No. 7/6 James Madison next Saturday at 3:30 p.m.