Eastern Washington drops Maine 50-19 to advance to FCS Championship game

Strangely enough this wasn’t a difficult game for the Eastern Eagles as they dropped the road weary Main Black Bears 50-19. The #3 Eagles had mighty challenges from Nicholls and had to even come from behind to beat UC Davis; however, the Black Bears looked a bit sluggish after traveling to Utah (to beat Weber St) and it showed as Eastern went up 28-0 by half.

QB Eric Barriere would throw 21-30 for 352 yards and 7 TDs on the day. The 7 TDs would tie school record set by Vernon Adams against the Washington Huskies in 2014. Eight different Eagles would get a catch on the day, but senior Nsimbia Webster would haul in 9 catches for 188 yards and 4 touchdowns.

The ground game was pretty strong too with Sam McPhereson going for 64 yards on 12 carries. Antoine Custer Jr and Tamarick Pierce would add 45 and 41 yards a piece.

“It all came together, and now we’re going to play for a national title,” Webster said. “We knew if we executed and did our jobs, we’d be in this position.”

The Eagles defensive line was missing Big Sky Defensive Player of the Year Jay Tiuli. The All-American defensive tackle had to sit the game out due to disciplinary action, but it was next man up as the defense held Maine QB Chris Ferguson to 51% passing and picked him off twice.

The win sets up a January 5th showdown on ESPN 2 with North Dakota State. The Bisons have been a perennial power house wining 5 FCS championships in the last 6 years. This year the Bisons are the undefeated #1 team in the land winning every game this season by 14 or more points. Should be a fun showdown.

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Abraham DeWeese is an avid local sports fan and a “Man-About-Town” in the Seattle sports scene. He's a lifelong resident of the Seattle area, living in the beautiful Greenlake neighborhood.