UNH football back in NCAA tournament at home against Fordham

DURHAM — This is why they came back.

They came back for moments like Saturday’s thrilling, nail-biter of a 42-41 overtime win over Maine in Alfond Stadium that earned the University of New Hampshire football team some serious hardware, bragging rights and the chance to practice a few more days and play at least one more game.

For moments like the aftermath of the Saturday’s instant classic when they got to celebrate with the Brice-Cowell Musket on the field and later with not only the trusty firearm but with the Colonial Athletic Association championship trophy in the lobby of the Alfond hockey rink that on football game days serves as the de facto locker room for visiting teams.

First-year head coach Rick Santos loudly and proudly lauded the team’s turnaround from a frustrating 3-8 season in 2021 that ended with eight straight losses to an 8-3 mark in 2022 before introducing CAA commissioner Joey D’Antonio.

The league boss proceeded to present the league trophy – marking the first time the Wildcats had won a share of the league crown since 2014 – to Santos and first-year director of athletics Allison Rich.

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