Playing before a homecoming crowd, UM (6-1, 3-0) jumped out to a 24-0 lead midway through the second quarter and held on for the victory.
The Black Bears outgained the Tribe, 420-279, and held a 36:20-23:40 advantage in time of possession. W&M (4-3, 1-2), which had won four of its last five games, entered the contest with the nation’s top scoring defense (11.8) and ranked seventh in total defense (284.2).
Maine opened the game with a 9-play, 80-yard touchdown drive, as center Bruce Johnson recovered a fumble by quarterback Marcus Wasilewski in the end zone. It marked just the seventh time in the last 50 contests that W&M has allowed a touchdown on an opponent’s opening drive.
The Black Bears increased the lead to 14-0 with a 1-yard touchdown run by Rickey Stevens with 4:27remaining in the first quarter.
After a 42-yard field goal by Sean Decloux extended the margin to 17-0 early in the second quarter, Wasilewski connected on an 11-yard touchdown pass to wideout Damarr Aultman with 5:12 remaining in the half. The short, 15-yard touchdown drive began after a 23-yard punt return by Justin Flores.
W&M got on the scoreboard with a 1-yard touchdown run by Anderson with 0:23 left in the second quarter. The scoring drive covered 52 yards on 13 plays and lasted 4:42.
Maine outgained the Tribe, 240-94, in the opening half and controlled the time of possession, 17:43-12:17.
UM scored the first points of the second half when Wasilewski threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to tight end Justin Perillo midway through the third quarter.
A 1-yard touchdown run by Keith McBride II early in the fourth quarter capped off a 9-play, 72-yard scoring drive that cut the margin to 31-13. The drive was highlighted by a 20-yard reception by Tre McBride and a 27-yard run by Graham.
After Maine added to its lead with a 21-yard field goal by Decloux midway through the third quarter, W&M answered with 4-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Caprio to Tre McBride with 1:18remaining. The drive was highlighted by a 44-yard strike from Caprio to wide receiver Sean Ballard that moved W&M into the red zone.
Tre McBride recovered the ensuing onside kick at the 50-yard line, but the College was unable to pick up a first down and Maine ran off the final seconds.
The Tribe will return to action next Saturday when it hosts No. 20/19 James Madison for homecoming.