HUNTSVILLE, Tx. – James Madison was cruising in the first half and built a 24-3 halftime lead behind three touchdowns from quarterback Cole Johnson (1 rushing, 2 passing). But Sam Houston stormed back scoring 28 points in a span of just over 5 minutes to take a 31-27 lead into the 4th quarter. This was spearheaded by Jequez Ezzard who had a 69-yard touchdown catch and an 80-yard punt return for a touchdown. Quarterback Eric Schmid added two rushing touchdowns from 20 and 11 yards out.
The Dukes kept fighting, with Cole Johnson finding Scott Bracey for a 34-yard touchdown pass with 10 minutes remaining in the game. JMU had a chance to tie the game with just over 2 minutes remaining. But it was a long 51-yard field goal so they called on kickoff specialist Connor Madden whose attempt went far left.
Sam Houston improved to 16-0 all-time at home in the postseason while JMU fell to 6-9 in road playoff contests. The Bearkats advance to the FCS Championship game in Frisco, Texas where they will face South Dakota State who defeated Delaware 33-3.