SPARTANBURG — Wofford running back Eric Breitenstein rushed for 247 yards and three touchdowns as the Terriers knocked off New Hampshire 23-7 in the second round of the Football Championship Subdivision playoffs.
Breitenstein opened the scoring on Wofford’s first possession, by turning a fourth-and-1 carry into 54-yard touchdown run. The senior tacked on scoring runs of 6 and 26 yards later in the contest.
The Terriers (9-3) entered the contest as the country’s second-best FCS rushing team, averaging more than 348 yards a game. They exceeded that total by the third quarter and finished the contest with 454 rushing yards.
The Wildcats (8-4) were limited to 238 yards of total offense and their only score came on a 14-yard fumble return by Cody Muller in the opening moments of the second half to cut the Terriers’ advantage to 13-7.
Wofford responded on its next drive as Breitenstein found the end zone for the third and final time from 26 yards out to ice the game.
Former Richmond Senior linebacker Phillip LeGrande was credited with three tackles in the win for the Terriers.
“The team we played was a real good football team,” Wofford coach Mike Ayers said. “We played hard and they played hard. They have a great scheme and are used to putting up 35 points every day. Our defense did an unbelievable job as far as stopping them. The difference in the ball game came down to the number of times that we were able to stop them. From an offensive standpoint we had a lot of plays but we not as productive as we needed to be. We got sloppy with the ball and gave them a chance to get back in it, but the defense answered the bell every time.”
With the victory, Wofford will advance to battle top-ranked North Dakota State 3 p.m. Saturday in Fargo. The Bison cruised past South Dakota State 28-3.
Redbirds clip Mountaineers in Moore’s final game
BOONE — Shelby Harris blocked the game-tying extra-point by Sam Martin as Illinois State edged Appalachian State for a 38-37 overtime victory in the second round of the FCS playoffs.
Matt Brown tossed five touchdowns and was 20-of-32 passing for 322 yards for the Redbirds (9-3). Tyrone Walker had 10 receptions for 176 yards and two scores, while James O’Shaughnessy finished with three catches and two touchdowns in the victory.
Illinois State trailed 28-17 going into the fourth quarter before Appalachian State rallied to force overtime.
Jamal Jackson was 33 for 45 for 373 yards and two touchdowns for the Mountaineers (8-4). Sean Price recorded 13 passes for 167 yards and became the all-time FCS freshman leader in receptions with 81 and receiving yards with 1,196.
In overtime, the Redbirds scored when Brown found O’Shaughnessy for a 25-yard touchdown. Appalachian State responded three plays later as Jackson connected with Andrew Peacock for a 4-yard scoring toss, setting up Harris’ block.
Former Richmond Senior offensive lineman Alex Coulthard was listed as playing for Appalachian State on the participation sheet.
The next day, Jerry Moore announced he was stepping down as Appalachian State’s coach after 24 seasons. Moore guided the Mountaineers to three straight national championships and compiled a 215-87 mark during his tenure in Boone. Overall, Moore was 242-135-2 in 31 years as a college coach.
One of Moore’s most memorable victories came in the first game of the 2007 season when Appalachian State became the first FCS school to beat an AP Top 25 team — shocking fifth-ranked Michigan 34-32 in “The Big House.”
— Sports editor Shawn Stinson can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.