Defense dominates, Schor breaks school record in JMU victory

HARRISONBURG — Another dominant defensive performance led to yet another James Madison University football win.

HARRISONBURG — Another dominant defensive performance led to yet another James Madison University football win.

The Dukes won their 20th straight game, with a 21-0 victory over the University of New Hampshire on Saturday.

“It was a great effort by our defense,” JMU junior cornerback Rashad Robinson said. “Big ups to the defensive line. They did a tremendous job (Saturday) getting after the quarterback. They have a very good quarterback. We knew he was going to try to make plays. And our d-line did a good job getting after him (Saturday).”

JMU senior quarterback Bryan Schor broke the school record for career passing touchdowns in the victory and now has 83.

New Hampshire quarterback Trevor Knight came into Saturday’s game averaging over 230 yards of offense per game, the Dukes held him to 131 yards.

The JMU defensive line was able to put pressure on Knight throughout the game. The Dukes had five sacks, forced two fumbles, one of which was recovered by JMU. The Dukes also had two interceptions.

The biggest interception came from Robinson. With JMU clinging to a 14-0 lead early in the second half, Robinson intercepted a pass from Knight and went 82 yards to stretch the lead to 21-0.

Robinson came up short of scoring on an interception last week, and said he knew he had to get to the end zone on Saturday.

“I knew if I broke that second tackle, I think I had like six purple jerseys in front of me,” Robinson said. “I knew the guys were really going to be on my butt if I didn’t score this one, in the locker room. So I was determined I had to make sure I got in the end zone.”

Neither team was able to score in the first quarter.

The Dukes (8-0, 5-0 CAA) put a solid drive together to start the second quarter. JMU went 46 yards on five plays. Schor connected with Ish Hyman for his record-breaking touchdown pass and a 7-0 lead with 10:38 left in the first half.

“It’s really cool,” Schor said. “When we got in the locker room it was something (JMU head) coach (Mike) Houston announced to the team. It wasn’t something I really noticed, really until that point. It’s a credit to the guys I’ve had around me these last couple years. I’m really blessed to have the wide receivers we have, the offensive line we have. And obviously you saw (Saturday) I’m really blessed to have the defense that we have to get us the ball so many times. So credit to those guys. And I’m just lucky to be here with them.”

Schor entered Saturday’s game tied with Vad Lee and Justin Rascati with 81 each.

Schor added to his record later in the first half. The Dukes completed a 10-play, 64-yard drive with a 1-yard touchdown pass from Schor to tight end Clayton Cheatham with 5:17 left in the half.

JMU senior linebacker Kyre Hawkins led the Dukes with 10 tackles. JMU senior defensive lineman Simyeon Robinson had two sacks.

Schor was 20-for-27 passing for 176 yards and two touchdowns. JMU wide receiver John Miller had five receptions for 65 yards. JMU running back Trai Sharp led the ground game with 83 yards on 18 carries.

JMU freshman punter Harry O’Kelly ran for 30 yards on a fake in the first half, and was the Dukes’ second leading rusher.

The Dukes held New Hampshire (5-3, 3-2 CAA) to only 27 rushing yards on 32 carries.

Even though the defense was dominant, the Dukes’ first shutout since 2015, Simyeon Robinson said they still have a lot of work to do this season.

“I think we still have a lot of room to play our best game of the season,” Simyeon Robinson said. “This was a great effort by the defense. We did really good. It was a good effort by the defense, but we can always work on something.”