DURHAM, N.H. - Joe Casamento threw for three touchdowns and Martin Gibson scored three more TDs to lead the sixth-ranked Villanova University football team to Saturday afternoon's 48-14 Atlantic 10 victory against the University of New Hampshire at Cowell Stadium.
Villanova (3-0 overall, 1-0 Atlantic 10) quickly took a 6-0 lead when Gibson returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown. Gibson finished with 100 rushing yards on 11 carries. His one-yard TD run gave VU a 19-0 lead at 7:40 of the first quarter and his 42-yard scamper capped the scoring at 12:06 of the fourth quarter.
Casamento completed 22 of 31 passes for 245 yards and his quarterback sneak gave the visitors a 12-0 lead at 11:21 of the opening frame. He connected with Noble Champen for a 14-yard TD later in the first and threw a two-yard strike to Matt Chila with seven seconds remaining in the second quarter to give VU a 34-14 advantage. John Dieser scored on a 10-yard pass play late in the third quarter to extend the lead to 27 points.
UNH (1-2, 0-1) scored 14 consecutive second-quarter points to trim the deficit to 26-14. David Bailey (Bronx, N.Y.) got New Hampshire on the scoreboard at 12:06 with a four-yard run, then Mike Granieri (Linwood, N.J.) threw a 14-yard TD pass to David Ball (Orange, Vt.) with 3:15 remaining until halftime. The visitors regained momentum heading into the locker room with the Casamento-to-Chila score.
Granieri completed 25 of 45 passes for 212 yards and was intercepted twice. His top target was Jermaine Stevens (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.), who finished with five receptions for 63 yards. R.J. Harvey (Albany, N.Y.) was UNH's leading rusher with 36 yards on seven carries.
New Hampshire returns to action Sept. 20 (12 p.m.) at the University of Rhode Island. The next Wildcat home game is Sept. 27 vs. intrastate rival Dartmouth College. Game time at Cowell stadium is 12 p.m.