William & MaryTribeW&M
11-2, 5-2 Away
Southern IllinoisSalukisSIU
11-2, 6-1 Home

William &, Mary 24, S. Illinois 3

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Anchoring one of the Football Championship Subdivision's stingiest defenses, William & Mary's Adrian Tracy wasn't worried by Southern Illinois quarterback Paul McIntosh scrambling for 34 yards on the first play of Saturday's quarterfinal game.

Tracy, a senior defensive end, figured the Tribe would settle in against one of the FCS' most potent rushing attacks. They did, and things soon turned miserable for the Salukis.

Southern Illinois mustered just 84 yards on the ground -- 147 below its season average, fourth in the FCS -- while Jonathan Grimes countered with 133 yards and three touchdowns to power the Tribe to a 24-3 victory that snapped the Salukis' 11-game winning streak.

"It was just getting adjusted to a team we haven't played before," Tracy shrugged after holding the Salukis, who averaged 37 points a game, to one field goal, kicked on the first series. "We just hunkered down and did what we needed to do."

R.J. Archer passed for 192 yards for the Tribe (11-2) but ceded much of the heavy lifting to Grimes, who ground down the Salukis (11-2) with 30 carries that gave William & Mary nearly 14 more minutes of possession time.

"We've been riding him all season," Tribe coach Jimmye Laycock said of Grimes, the senior running back who came in averaging 19 carries a game.

Still, Laycock's highest praise went to his defense. William & Mary stifled Deji Karim -- one of three candidates for the FCS' equivalent of the Heisman Trophy -- to just 27 yards on the ground, 111 yards off his typical output that was good for second in the FCS.

"We had guys coming at you all the time, all the time," Laycock said.

Afterward, Karim appeared crestfallen.

"We tried to establish some things and just couldn't get it going," he said. "They're just tough. They were tougher than us, more physical than us."

After the teams exchanged early field goals, Grimes' 6-yard run untouched up the middle put the Tribe ahead for good 10-3 with 1:37 left in the first half. That capped an eight-play, 77-yard drive extended by punter David Miller's 12-yard run on a fake on fourth-and-5 from Southern's 45.

William & Mary finished with 373 yards of offense, Southern Illinois just 187.

The usually disciplined Salukis didn't help themselves with six penalties totaling 65 yards. The most costly: a holding call that negated McIntosh's 22-yard first-quarter scramble to the Tribe 5. Four plays later, Kyle Dougherty's field goal attempt was blocked, leaving SIU clinging to the 3-0 lead.

"We gave it our best shot," Salukis coach Dale Lennon said. "We had some opportunities we didn't take advantage of. We made a few too many mistakes.

"Every time we had something going, they slammed the door on us."


2015 Colonial Athletic Association Standings

James Madison6-29-3
William & Mary6-29-4
New Hampshire5-37-5
Stony Brook3-55-5
Rhode Island1-71-10

2015 Missouri Valley Football Conference Standings

North Dakota State7-113-2
Illinois State7-110-2
Northern Iowa5-39-4
South Dakota State5-38-4
Western Illinois5-37-6
Indiana State3-55-6
South Dakota3-55-6
Youngstown State3-55-6
Southern Illinois2-63-8
Missouri State0-81-10