Live updates: Follow as UMaine football battles Weber State in FCS national

By Pete Warner, BDN Staff •

Updated:

The University of Maine football team will try to go where no other Black Bears squad has been before on Friday night when it takes on Weber State in a Football Championship Subdivision national quarterfinal at Stewart Stadium. Stay tuned here for up-to-the-minute updates from the game, which kicks off at 8 p.m.

Timeout UMaine. 1:39 left

47-yarder?

Field goal try?

Clock ticks under 2:00

Edwards runs, but can’t find any running room

Still 2:25 on the clock

Weber State burns its last timeout

Fitzpatrick around the end, one yard. Third-and-10

UMaine is at the Weber State 30-yard line

Talk about a nail-biter!

Only 2:33 left

The Black Bears need one timeout to put this game away — finally

Fitzpatrick runs straight ahead, no gain. Timeout Weber

Kayon Whitaker with the deflection and Grayer alterly grabs it. 2:40 to play

That ought to just about do it — but no guarantees

Constantine throws, it’s tipped and intercepted by Grayer. 

They’d better hope the defense is up to the challenge one more time

Stupid penalties have been an issue for Umaine all season

The Wildcats have two timeouts

So the lack of discipline by Jefferson, spinning the ball on the ground after scoring, opens the door for Weber State to stay within striking distance

Thus, it’s only a one-score game. UMaine leads 20-12 with 2:56 left.

The Weber State coach made sure to have the penalty enforced on the PAT and it pays off.

The kick from 35 yards out is hooked wide left

Kenny Doak’s PAT is delayed by a clarification of the unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Jefferson

Jefferson followed Belcher around the corner and bounced off a defender before racing to the end zone

Flags fly in the end zone

Jefferson eludes a tackle at the corner and races into the end zone. UMaine makes it a two-score game

Fitzpatrick can only get one yard in the middle

Defensive holding gives UMaine 10 yards and a critical first down. 3:46 to play

UMaine may catch a break here

A pass to Belcher produces a VERY late flag from the secondary

UMaine needs to bleed this play clock every play

Jefferson with a catch, a short pickup. Third down (again)

Jefferson can’t find a yard on first down

Constantine is intercepted by Jeff DeVaughn, his second of the night, and the Black Bears have a huge opportunity to ice this thing

Ball will be pushed back to the UMaine 47

Pass is incomplete. Holding on the offense

But there’s a flag

Constantine throws low near the sideline and it appears to have been caught

Oh, unsportsmanlike conduct on Richard Carr gives Weber a first down and 15 big yards.

Fourth down. But a flag downfield

Constantine is sacked and loses the handle. Deshawn Stevens nearly gets the fumble.

Biggest play of the game to date

5:55 left

Constantine can’t find Malone in the left flat. Third down 

Davis finds two yards up the middle

Hurry up here

Constantine to Denby on the sideline, another first down. Weber State is rolling

A nifty throw from Constantine to Shaheed on a slant, first down

Shaheed with an eight-yard grab. Third and 2

Demby catches a short pass from Constantine, but Sheffield will have none of it. no gain

UMaine’s inability to do anything on offense in the second half — after the Edwards TD reception — may well cost it the game

Another absolute dog of a kick rolls dead at the Weber State 29. 7:43 to go .. back to defense for the Black Bears

Deoul to punt

Ferguson’s pass is broken up by Parker Preator. A terrific play that cost Umaine a first down

Docos pulls back early, costs Umaine five yards. Now third-and-15

The flea-flicker, Ferguson to Blair, is long and incomplete

The Bears could ice this by eating some clock and getting a TD

Ball at midfield. Next pass is out of bounds

That was a dart

Fergson throws into traffic to Old Town’s Dre Miller for a nice 23-yard gain

Patterson just ripped it out of Cooley’s hands

Constantine is intercepted by Manny Patterson, who has been awesome covering receivers (again) tonight

Garrett goes left, goes nowhere

UMaine could use a turnover to turn the tide

UMaine’s defense continues to shoulder the load in this game. Biggest game in program history, a berth in the national semifinals on the line

UMaine still holding on to a 14-12 lead. 9:35 remaining

UMaine can’t get a first down. Deoul’s punt is returned to the Black Bears 45.

Jefferson goes outside for nine yards to the 15

94 yards from paydirt

Wright lets the pull roll to the 6-yard line. The 44-yard kick puts UMaine back in a hole needed to eat some clock and put some points on the board

Black Bears hold one more time

Constantine has time, but no open man, third-down play incomplete

Constantine under pressure, throws low, nearly intercepted

Constantine tries to force it into coverage, incomplete

The Wildcats are in good shape at their own 40. 12:09 left, UMaine leads 14-12. Ball is back in the UMaine defense’s court

Shaheed muffs the punt return, but gets it back

Deoul needs a good punt here

UMaine just can’t put anything together on offense

Ferguson is sacked for the first time tonight by Adam Rodriguez — with a three-man rush

A screen to Micah Wright does not materialize. Third down

Belcher, a short grab, a loss of one

Time for the Black Bears to pull a rabbit out of the hat with some sort of trick play

The punt takes a good bounce and goes 47 yards to the UMaine 33. 

Micah Wright back to receive

Sheffield breaks in and sacks Constantine to force a Weber State punt

Constantine throws incomplete as Shaheed is wrecked by DeVaughn

The Black Bears have surrendered 185 passing yards but have given up only 12 on the ground

UMaine has only eight first downs, but has outgained Weber State 217-197.

Sheffield swallows up Garrett as the quarter ends. Black Bears still on top 14-12

Ball at the WSU 30

Shaheed is buried after a 39-yard punt by Derek Deoul. Weber State back on the attack trailing 14-12

13 seconds left in the third quarter

Ferguson’s next pass is at Edwards’ feet. Another punt forthcoming

Ineligible receiver downfield on Belcher. The play is wiped out

Belcher makes a juggling reception over the middle on a throw from Ferguson, but there’s a flag

Ferguson throws to Wright for six yards. Third and 1

Sorry, correction: Score is 14-12 UMaine

Jefferson finds a brief opening and gains 3 yards

Edwards kneels in the end zone, giving UMaine the ball at the 25 to start its next possession. We still have 16:55 left

It’s imperative that UMaine move the football on offense on its next possession. They have been stagnant for a long time

Tuttle’s PAT is NO GOOD, wide right! UMaine clings to a 14-13 lead with 1:55 left in the quarter. Tuttle’s first miss of the season

Weber lines up in a weird formation, but then lines up to kick

And it’s ruled a touchdown. 14-12, pending a conversion

UMaine’s secondary is getting burned for some big plays tonight, despite the unit’s efforts 90 percent of the time

This game may set a record for video reviews

That was an absolute prayer by Constantine, but Cooley went up and got it, at least temporarily

It looks on replay as though Cooley made the catch and had it taken away. 

Constantine avoids a sack, but throws to the end zone. Jeff DeVaughn wrestles the ball away from the receiver. It’s an interception — for the momentt

Fourth-and-12 at the UMaine 33

Constantine’s third-down pass goes long and out of bounds

A toss to a wideout out of the wildcat, but he goes nowhere

Garrett runs, meets Lowe, loses a yard

At the umaine 31

Constantine took a shot on the play, but stood in there 

Constantine again finds Denby downfield behind Richard Carr. It’s a 41-yard gain

Constantine has Cooley open but no catch, a little too hot, high and behind him

This one is a dog, shanked out of bounds at the Weber State 28-yard line. Bad time for a 19-yard punt by Deoul — not that there is often a good time for one of those

Deoul on to punt — again

4:23 still left in the third quarter

Ferguson can’t find a receiver on a throw down the field. Fourth down — again

Ferguson throws underneath to Belcher, but he’s two yards shy of a first down

Joe Fitzpatrick pounds his way into the middle and picks up 3 to the UMaine 48

Earnest Edwards on the jet sweep for a 10-yard pickup for uMaine

Both QBs having their share of issues against two strong defenses

Constantine under pressure and is intercepted by Jeff DeVaughn in the middle. Black Bears get the ball back

Constantine throws one to the left, but nobody’s there. Third down

Constantine has a receiver, Denby, but he can’t come up with it near the goal line

Shaheed fields at the UMaine 45 and Weber State again will have great field position to start a possession. Black Bears clinging to a 14-6 lead

Deoul to punt

Ferguson makes a terrible throw toward a receiver. Bears have to punt again deep in their own territory

Ferguson dumps one to Wright for about 12 yards, but it’s still third-and-11

Devin Young flirts with disaster on an end-around, but gets it back to the 2-yard line

Ramon Jefferson burst through the right side, but a flag flies. A holding call makes it 1st and 20 from the 4

Micah Wright makes the fair catch at the 13. Lousy field position, but UMaine offense with another chance to put a drive together and extend the 14-6 lead

Davis catches a quick pass, but Jaron Grayer snuffs it out. Weber will have to punt

Then an illegal substitution costs Weber 5 yards. With all that time to get ready, too

Third and 1

The targeting foul is revoked. They got it right.

Tick, tick, tick

What is going on with this review. TV shows it clearly

Love to see the refs get the call right, but this is taking way too long!

It’s a miracle Cooley held onto that ball in the first place

Stevens has been an absolute force for this defense

It was a violent hit, but not an illegal one

We’re still only 5:15 into the second half. A long way to go

Simple matter of a size mismatch of a backer on a wideout

Replay shows a perfectly good and hard hit by Deshawn Stevens. This call could be overturned since it is being reviewed, since targeting indicates a hit to the head. It was not

Constantine throws to Cooley for about eight yards, but a targeting penalty will cost the Bears 15 yards. 

Katley Joseph was beat on that play and the receiver couldn’t get it

Joseph and Darrius Hart both get a hand on a Constantine pass, but can’t come up with it

Pressure back on the defense

Hmm, doesn’t look like that ball was secured by the defensive player before it was pulled from his hands

The play is under review

Ferguson has been shaky all night throwing into coverage. Not sure whether it’s an injury issue or big-game jitters, but he has not been sharp for the most part

All kinds of time left and the momentum is turning. LeGrand Toia with the pick at the Weber State 47-yard line

Ferguson throws into a crowd over the middle and is intercepted

The kickoff goes out of bounds, which gives UMaine the ball at the 35-yard line

Black Bears allowed one big pass play that led to that kick

Trey Tuttle from 45 yards and it’s good. Weber State cuts the UMaine lead to 14-6 at 10:12 of the period

It’s a field goal try

Constantine is hit while throwing, Sheffield on the play. The holding call is declined and Weber State will punt

Still 10:30-plus left in the third quarter

Third-and-10

Garrett is dropped in his tracks by Deshawn Stevens

Wildcat again

Garrett takes a direct snap and runs middle, but only about 2 yards on the pickup

That’s a 31-yard play — the kind UMaine could not afford to give up 

Constantine throws long for Demby as Jeff DeVaughn gets beat pretty badly. 

Third-and-10, that is. UMaine can’t let anything big happen right here

So it will be third down for Weber State

UMaine players ran it back as though they thought it was not a fumble

Call is still being reviewed

That’s going to get reversed

Cooley didn’t appear to ever have possession. It went to the ground

A pass is complete, but Katley Joseph rips it out and Sterling Sheffield runs it all the way for a touchdown!

Weber State still unable to run the ball against the Bears

Weber State, perhaps sensing the importance of this drive,calls a quick timeout

Constantine looks to throw deep but Manny Patterson is right with Rashid Shaheed 

There was some hand fighting going on

Katley Joseph is going to get called for pass interference on a throw over the middle

Davis can’t find much room, maybe picked up a yard. Taji Lowe plugs the hole

Davis runs left, picks up 4. Katley Joseph among the tacklers

The kickoff is misplayed, but goes for touchback

A simple little play, but the corner overplayed the throw and tried to knock it away, but the throw was on the money and Edwards had no further resistance

The play covers 67 yards and Doak adds the PAT to make it 14-3 UMaine

A quick toss to Earnest Edwards, a missed tackle and he’s gone for a touchdown.

Jefferson goes around the right side and picks up about six. third and 2

Ferguson dumps off a short toss to Joe Fitzpatrick for two yards

Touchback on the kickoff gives the Black Bears the ball at the 25-yard line

UMaine is 6-1 this season when leading at the half

UMaine posts seven tackles for a loss of yardage in the first half

The Black Bears will get the ball to star the second half after deferring upon winning the coin toss.

An error in an earlier post in tonight’s live blog:.James Madison of the CAA joins UMaine as league representatives in the FCS quarterfinals

Darryl Denby (40 yards) and Devon Cooley (27) each have two receptions for the Wildcats

Weber State QB Jake Constantine is 9-for-18 with 77 yards, but 34 yards came on one play. UMaine’s secondary, led by Manny Patterson, has been locked down

Tight end Drew Becher has three catches for 30 yards

Ramon Jefferson has picked up 28 yards on nine carries to lead the UMaine run attack. Ferguson is 7-for-15 (incuding an 0-for-6 drought mixed in) for 54 yards and the TD pass to Jaquan Blair.

Not much offense in the first half. UMaine outgained Weber State 107-89 overall, going 2-for-7 on third down. The Wildcats were 2-for-9

UMaine runs out the clock to end the half and leads this FCS national quarterfinal 7-3. Defense, defense, defense. 

Wright makes another fair catch and UMaine takes over up 7-3 with the half close to and end

Lloyd back to punt

Constantine throws one into the bench. Weber State will punt. 1:04 left in the half

Constantine throws over the middle incomplete. Richard Carr on the coverage

Whitaker takes an offside penalty, now second-and-4

Wildcats are in hurry-up mode

Shaheed with a grab from Constantine for a short gain

Then Constantine finds Cooley for a 14-yard throw

UMaine has held Weber to 74 total yards thus far

Shaheed takes the kick at the 4 and gets up near the 20

Drive is 9 plays, 46 yards

Kenny Doak will line up for the PAT and it’s good, UMaine 7, Weber State 3 with 2:05 remaining in the first half. 

UMaine had been 0-for-5 on third down prior to that possession

Looks good on the TV replay!

Play is under review

Ferguson finds Jaquan Blair on a quick hook on the left side and Blair lunges across the goal line for a touchdown

Not much for Jefferson up the middle. Now third-and-goal from the 8

Ferguson under pressure throws it up for grabs and Andre Miller again knocks the ball away from Parker Preator, who had a pick in his sights

Jefferson picks up the first down with two hard-earned yards up the gut

Jefferson spins through a tackle and winds down to the 11. Second and 1

Young on a jet sweep to the short side of the field nets 13 yards

Ball at the 33

Ferguson hits Devin Young slicing through the middle for the first down

Ferguson to Belcher on the left side for a gain of six. Third-and-7

Flags fly. Offside on the offense against Belcher

Jefferson finds tough sledding off the right side and gains two yards

The punt is downed at the Weber State 47, so UMaine has another opportunity to get something going on offense. 27 rushing yards thus far while Ferguson is 4-for-11

Garrett pushes up the middle for four yards, but Weber State will have to punt … Sheffield is dinged up

Weber State’s starting left guard, Mo Cannon, is helped off with a leg injury

Garrett is dropped in the backfield by Sterling Sheffield. Now third-and-14. First time we’ve mentioned Sheffield tonight

A short pass play picks up nothing as Katley Joseph makes the play

Shaheed fields the punt at the 14-yard line and Weber State brings the offense back on the field. Wildcats lead UMaine 3-0, 8:38 left in the half

Ferguson buries one in the ground. He has not been sharp. UMaine must punt again after squandering good field position

Third and 17

Illegal substitution further hampers the Bears

A screen left to Edwards goes nowhere as Blair can’t make the block

A reverse to Micah Wright goes for only 3 yards

Ferguson finds Belcher on a drag across the middle for 14 yards

UMaine 15 plays, 43 yards so far

Weber State still on top 3-zip

Micah Wright fields it cleanly and UMaine is slowly turning the field and will take over at its own 47

Lloyd back to kick

Davis runs it for three yards, but UMaine forces the punt

Delay of game on Weber State. Now third-and-15

Third-and-10

Constantine lofts up a pass that is broken up by Katley Joseph

Josh Davis is roped down by Kayon Whitaker for no gain

Shaheed calls for a fair catch at the Weber State 19. 43 yards on the punt by Deoul, who has been excellent tonight thus far

Deoul to punt again

UMaine will punt from its 39

Ferguson is flushed from the pocket but slides down a yard short of the first down

Ferguson lofts one up and it’s picked off, but an offsides penalty negates the play

UMaine takes a timeout. Weber State still leading 3-0, 13:20 left in the half

It’s third-and-12

Ferguson’s pass to Edwards is incomplete, although he took two hands to the back before the ball was there

Ramon Jefferson picks up about three yards on first down and 15

Black Bears haven’t been able to establish the run. That is a big key. If they don’t, the Wildcats are going to pin their ears back and go after Ferguson

Weber State takes its second charged timeout leading 3-0 with 14:03 left in the first half

Ineligible receiver downfield is a 5-yard penalty, repeat first down

Wildcats dial up pressure like UMaine likes to do

Ferguson under a heavy rush throws it to nobody on the right side. This could be grounding

Ferguson breaks a string of six straight incompletions, finds Drew Belcher for a first down

UMaine will initiate the possession from its 19

Edwards fields a line drive at the 6 and can’t get any room to run

Let’s see if Weber kicks it to Earnest Edwards

Perhaps now, with a decent return, the Black Bears can get some respectable field position

And it’s good. Weber State 3, UMaine 0 with 11 seconds gone in the second quarter.

A 37-yard field goal try by Trey Tuttle

Constantine under duress throws to no one, Kayon Whitaker in his face. Fourth down

Third and 12 at the Umaine 20

Total offense, 101 yards combined, only 24 by the Bears

Black Bears with only one first down thus far. Weber State has six

And that will do it for the first quarter. No score between UMaine and Weber State in their FCS quarterfinal, but the Wildcats are knocking on the door

Garrett is wrapped up by Alejandro Oregon for a loss of one

Constantine throws to Denby, but it’s not catchable. Second and 10

Garrett bursts up the middle through a big hole, 14 yards for a first down

Hands to the face on Skylar Bowman will cost the Bears 15 yards. Weber State now at the UMaine 33

Garrett runs into a crowd in the middle, maybe good for three yards, but there’s a flag

This punt isn’t quite as good, 36 yards, and Shaheed calls for a fair catch at the UMaine 48. 1:33 left in the quarter

Jefferson finds some room off right tackle but picks up only seven yards. UMaine must punt again

Ferguson throws into double coverage, but Old Town’s Andre Miller basically makes a defensive play by knocking it away

This Weber defensive front appears stout

Patterson up the middle finds nowhere to run

Starting field position so far for UMaine: UM 12, UM 12, UM 5

Lloyd hits another beauty, a 46-yarder that does out near the UMaine 5-yard line

Constantine is shaken up a bit

Constantine’s pass under duress falls incomplete. Weber will punt, but the Black Bears could get hemmed in deep once again

Garrett up the middle, but Connor Walsh drops him quickly

A pass lofted to Shaheed amidst a rush, but Lowe makes the play

Weber State ball, 4:48 left first quarter, at midfield

It’s a good thing, because his two excellent punts have helped UMaine out of a hole, at least temporarily

Shaheed takes it at his 35 and returns to near midfield. A 51-yard boot by Deoul, who seems to be enjoying the thinner air at 4,000 feet!

Deoul to punt

Ferguson with a low throw intended for Edwards, who wasn’t open. Weber keeping the pressure on

Wow. Adam Rodriguez nearly picks off Ferguson amidst a pass rush. Third and 7

Edwards finds little room but gains two yards on first down

A nice punt is downed at the 12-yard line. UMaine again facing tough field position. No score, 5:50 left first quarter

Doug Lloyd to punt

Constantine’s pass goes off the hands of Allen and Weber State will punt. 

Wildcats face third-and-14

Davis on a deep handoff, but he’s cut down by Whitaker and Wiley

Davis again tries the right side, picks up two. Bears looking stout against the run so far

Big rush by Constantine finds A.J. Allen on a slant from the right side. First down Weber

Quick toss left to Josh Davis, who slips trying to deke Taji Lowe. Third and 5

Josh Davis with a run, picks up about three… 8:35 left in the first quarter

Weber State ball at its own 35

Derek Deoul boots a punt to the WSU 25. 49 yard punt is a good one. Wildcats ball

Ferguson has Edwards open but throws high. UMaine will punt. Ferguson looks like he’s conscious of the rush and is a little jittery

Jefferson goes around the left end and fights his way for 3 or 4 yards

Ferguson’s check-down to Jefferson over the middle sails high. A little pressure, although the receiver was open

Jefferson picks up two short yards, but gets the first down at the 21

A quick out from Chris Ferguson to Earnest Edwards for 8 yards

Wildcats punt, it goes out of bounds at the UMaine 12. Black Bears take over

Big sack of Constantine by Kayon Whitaker. He now has 10 1/2 on the season

Only one senior on the offensive line for Weber State. Same with UMaine which has Cody Levy. Iosua Opeta is the Wildcats’ left tackle

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Weber State takes a timeout on third-and-10 from the UMaine 22. Only 3:06 gone in the contest

Bears with a good pass rush and Constantine throws incomplete. Jamehl Wiley with the pressure

Constantine throws long to the end zone. Second down

A quick screen to the right side to Darryl Denby goes 40 yards to the Umaine 22

Davis takes it off left tackle and picks up two for a first down Weber State

Constantine throws to the right side, but a yard short of a first down

Davis goes around left end, but is cut down quickly by Taji Lowe

The Wildcats come out throwing and pick up 13 yards on first down

UMaine neutralizes Shaheed, who is a threat to take it the distance. Weber State starts at its own 20

Black Bears win the toss and defer, will kick off to open the game

Weber State bowed out in the national quarterfinals last season at Harrisonburg, Va., against James Madison, one of UMaine’s CAA opponents

Weber State, the No. 2 seed, is 10-2 this season. UMaine, seeded seventh, is 9-3

A great opportunity for UMaine’s program to get some national exposure tonight on ESPN2. That’s legit national TV as opposed to ESPN3, which is an internet streaming platform. You can’t but this kind of publicity (not cheaply, anyway)

Senior wide receiver Micah Wright is fired up and ready to play

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Three keys for UMaine in this game
1. Protect Chris Ferguson. If he takes even one hard hit, it could knock him out of the game with the bad shoulder. UMaine struggles offensively when he is not in the game.
2. Run the football. If the Black Bears can establish a solid ground attack, it will make their job throwing the ball much easier and help them be unpredictable. It also will enable them to control the clock.
3. Stop the run. Weber State has the top freshman running back in the country and is capable of dominating on the ground. If UMaine can put the Wildcats in third-and-long situations, they’ll have more chances to be aggressive rushing the passer and potentially generating a few turnovers

Chris Ferguson warms up during pregame

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Weber State features 49 players from Utah and 23 from California

UMaine’s offensive line is likely to be tested tonight in trying to protect quarterback Chris Ferguson’s sore right shoulder. Weber State has registered 15 sacks in its last three games.

Note the snow beyond the back of the end zone in the background. These teams should both be up for the challenge, at least as far as the weather is concerned

All photos tonight are courtesy of Ronnie Gillis of UMaine athletics

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Weber State has been ranked in the top 10 nationally in both FCS polls 10 times in 13 weeks this fall

Weber State was among three Big Sky teams that went 10-2 overall and 7-1 in league play this season. The others, California Davis and Eastern Washington, also are in the FCS quarterfinals this weekend. UMaine is the lone remaining CAA representative

There has been a lot of talk about the Colonial Athletic Association being the best FCS conference in the country, but the Big Sky Conference probably begs to differ — at least this season

The Wildcats have won 19 of their last 22 home games at Stewart Stadium

Weber State, in the FCS playoffs for the third straight season, has won seven consecutive games

A half-hour before kickoff, it’s 32 degrees with only a hint of a breeze at Stewart Stadium in Ogden, Utah.