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D I-AA Playoff Roundup: Appalachian State advances to semifinals

    BOONE, N.C. — Kevin Richardson rushed for 131 yards and four touchdowns and defending national champion Appalachian State beat Montana State 38-17 on Saturday to reach the semifinals of the NCAA Division I-AA playoffs.
    Quarterback Armanti Edwards ran for 105 yards and a score — the second straight week he and Richardson both went over 100 yards rushing — and Omarr Byrom had 3.5 sacks and a forced fumble to help the top-seeded Mountaineers win their 12th straight game.
    Appalachian State, which has won 26 straight at home, will face Youngstown State at home next Saturday in the semifinals.
    Richardson’s TD runs of 2 and 5 yards in the first quarter gave Appalachian State (12-1) a 14-0 lead. After the Bobcats (8-5) pulled to 24-17, Richardson ran it in from 1-yard early in the fourth quarter.
    On the next possession, Byrom sacked Jack Rolevich and knocked away the ball, which was recovered by the Mountaineers’ Daniel Orlebar at the 3. Richardson then put it away with a 1-yard TD run, his school-record 24th rushing touchdown of the season.

Youngstown St. 28, Illinois St. 21
    YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Tom Zetts threw two touchdown passes and ran for another score for Youngstown State (11-2).
    Marcus Mason rushed for 138 yards and a touchdown and Zetts finished 11 of 21 for 146 yards. Pierre Rombert led Illinois State (9-4) with 114 yards rushing.
    The Penguins took a 28-7 lead on Mason’s 2-yard touchdown run with 5:13 to play in the third quarter. The Redbirds cut the lead to 28-21 on Lauren Robinson’ 2-yard pass to to Luke Drone and Drone’s 7-yard run.

Montana 20, S. Illinois 3
    MISSOULA, Mont. — Josh Swogger passed for 230 yards and two touchdowns, both to Craig Chambers, and Montana allowed Southern Illinois past midfield only twice.
    Montana (12-1) won its 12th straight to set up a home semifinal game next Saturday against Massachusetts.
    Thomas Brooks-Fletcher rushed for 106 yards for Montana. Ryan Bagley had six catches for 88 yards and Eric Allen had four for 70. The Grizzlies held Arkee Whitlock, the fourth leading rusher in I-AA, to 80 yards, 66 below his season average.
    Southern Illinois finished the season 9-4.

Massachusetts 24, New Hampshire 17
    AMHERST, Mass. — Steve Baylark ran for 198 yards and one touchdown and Liam Coen passed for 231 yards and two scores for Massachusetts (12-1).
    Massachusetts, which trailed 17-14 at halftime, has won 10 straight. The Minutemen also beat New Hampshire 28-20 earlier in the season.
    UMass took a 21-17 left late in the third quarter on Coen’s 31-yard touchdown pass to Brandon London. New Hampshire’s late drive was halted with 33 seconds to play, when Rick Santos’ pass was deflected to the ground on a fourth-and-1 play from the 6.
    New Hampshire finished the season at 9-4.

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