*** NAIA ***
OVERTIME MAGNUM OPUS – The (8) LINDSEY WILSON COLLEGE BLUE RAIDERS hosted the (9) GRAND VIEW UNIVERSITY VIKINGS in a typically tight 8 seed versus 9 seed game. The Blue Raiders came back from being down 3-0 in the 1st Quarter to take a 17-10 lead into Halftime. The Vikings retook the lead 27-24 to end the 3rd Quarter, with a 4th Quarter Field Goal from Lindsey Wilson forcing OT with a 27-27 tie. The Blue Raiders scored 7 on their possession then shut out Grand View for a 34-27 triumph.
THE WAR OUT WEST – The (6) MONTANA TECH OREDIGGERS took the field against the visiting (11) DICKINSON STATE BLUE HAWKS. The Orediggers seized a 14-0 advantage in the 1st Quarter with the two teams exchanging a Touchdown apiece in the 2nd. After the break the Blue Hawks edged closer but Montana Tech kept them off at just enough distance for a 28-21 victory.
TEN OVER SEVEN WORKS IN FOOTBALL, TOO – In a 10 seed over 7 seed upset the (10) EASTERN OREGON UNIVERSITY MOUNTAINEERS traveled to face the (7) DOANE COLLEGE TIGERS. The Mountaineers put the Tigers on Upset Alert by Halftime with a 20-14 lead. The 3rd Quarter ended with Eastern Oregon up 34-21 and withstanding a 4th Quarter Doane rally to win it 34-28.
DEFENDING CHAMPS ADVANCE – The top seeded Defending Champions of NAIA football – the MARIAN UNIVERSITY KNIGHTS – welcomed the (16) ROBERT MORRIS (IL) UNIVERSITY EAGLES (should be the Wind Eagles). This was no contest as the Knights parlayed a 16-0 1st Quarter lead into a 32-7 smackdown, with Robert Morris’ 7 points not coming until garbage time. On to Round Two for Marian U.
A TALE OF TWO HALVES – The game pitting the (2) BAKER UNIVERSITY WILDCATS against the (15) STERLING COLLEGE WARRIORS was a true Jekyll and Hyde affair. By Halftime the Wildcats were in a 21-14 fight with the Warriors but after the break Baker University exploded for a blowout win by a final score of 44-21.
EXTINGUISHING THE FIRE – The (3) REINHARDT UNIVERSITY EAGLES (should be the Rottweilers) took on their guests the (14) SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY FIRE yesterday. The Eagles led the Fire 24-7 at the midpoint of the game, with Southeastern University lagging behind 37-22 to end the 3rd Quarter. From there it was all Reinhardt, which won the game 56-22.
STAMPEDE – The (5) MORNINGSIDE COLLEGE MUSTANGS were very inhospitable hosts to the (12) TABOR COLLEGE BLUE JAYS in their First Round game. The Mustangs parlayed a 7-3 1st Quarter edge into a commanding 37-17 Halftime lead and ultimately a SIXTY-FIVE to SEVENTEEN blowout victory. The Mustangs still seem angry about their undeserved big dip in the polls weeks ago.
ABSOLUTE SLAUGHTER – And finally the (4) UNIVERSITY OF SAINT FRANCIS (IN) COUGARS squared off against the (13) MISSOURI VALLEY COLLEGE VIKINGS. The 1st Quarter ended with the Cougars clinging to a 21-20 advantage … but the Vikings would never score again. From there USF folded, spindled and mutilated MVC in a SEVENTY-NINE to TWENTY slaughter.
*** NCAA DIVISION TWO ***
SEVEN SEED OVER TWO SEED – The 7th seeded TUSKEGEE UNIVERSITY GOLDEN TIGERS took it on the road against their super-region’s 2 seeds – the NEWBERRY COLLEGE WOLVES. The Golden Tigers once again proved the wisdom of ditching their Thanksgiving Day obligation to play Alabama State in favor of the playoffs. In a true game for the ages Tuskegee managed a 35-33 upset of the Wolves.
SIX SEED OVER THREE SEED, PART ONE – Yesterday their super-region’s 6 seeds – the COLORADO SCHOOL OF MINES OREDIGGERS – traveled to face the 3rd seeded SOUTHWEST BAPTIST UNIVERSITY BEARCATS. The Orediggers surprised most of the nation by pushing the Bearcats all over the field. In the end Colorado School of Mines moved on to the next round in a 63-35 blowout.
ANOTHER SIX SEED OVER THREE SEED – This upset was easier to see coming when Florida Tech suspended their starting Quarterback a few days ago over a drunk driving incident. The 6th seeded NORTH GREENVILLE UNIVERSITY CRUSADERS still deserve all the credit for following through with a road win over those 3 seeds – the FLORIDA TECH PANTHERS. The final tally was Crusaders 27 Panthers 13.
BRAVES OVER BLAZERS – Their super-region’s 5 seeds – the UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA AT PEMBROKE BRAVES – visited the 4th seeded VALDOSTA STATE BLAZERS on Saturday. Spectators were treated to four gut-wrenching Quarters of gridiron action as the Braves defeated the Blazers in a 24-21 Instant Classic.
BATTLE OF THE BIRDS – This game pitted the 5th seeded INDIANA UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA CRIMSON HAWKS against the 4 seeds – the FAIRMONT STATE FALCONS. The Crimson Hawks proceeded to thoroughly dominate the Falcons on both sides of the ball, kicking them around in what turned out to be a SIXTY-TWO to THIRTEEN evisceration.
PIONEERING A PLAYOFF WIN – The 2 seeds – the LONG ISLAND UNIVERSITY AT C.W. POST PIONEERS – got almost more than they could handle from the 7th seeded WINSTON-SALEM STATE RAMS. It was a nearer-run thing than you would expect in a 2 seed vs 7 seed matchup but in the end LIU-CW Post won this game by a final score of 48-41.
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE – In a 4 seed vs 5 seed clash the (4) TEXAS A&M AT COMMERCE LIONS hosted the (5) COLORADO MESA UNIVERSITY MAVERICKS. Fireworks flew in this action-packed back and forth affair. In the end there could only be one winner of course, and it was the Lions over the Mavericks with a final count of 34-23.
COUGAR ON COUGAR VIOLENCE – The 2 seeds – the UNIVERSITY OF SIOUX FALLS COUGARS – took the field against the visiting 7th seeded AZUSA PACIFIC UNIVERSITY COUGARS from California. The storied University of Sioux Falls team had a fight on its hands but in the end left the home crowd with a smile. Sioux Falls prevailed 34-21 to advance to the next round.
BISON OVER THE MULES – The teams duking it out in this matchup were the 3rd seeded HARDING UNIVERSITY BISON and the 6 seeds – the UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL MISSOURI MULES. The Bison and Mules collided in a close contest at first but Harding University eventually got separation. The final score in this hard-fought game was Bison 48 Central Missouri 31.
YOU KNOW WHAT THEY SAY ABOUT ASSUMPTIONS – Okay, I know the saying is actually “You know what they say about assuming” but I had to tie the title in with this game. The 3rd seeded SHEPHERD UNIVERSITY RAMS welcomed the 6th seeded ASSUMPTION COLLEGE GREYHOUNDS. The Rams flexed their post-season experience in this matchup, defeating the Greyhounds 48-31 – just like the USF/ APU game.
BULLDOG BLOWOUT – The 2 seeds – the FERRIS STATE BULLDOGS – did not at all make their guests the 7th seeded MIDWESTERN STATE MUSTANGS feel welcome yesterday. The Bulldogs treated the Mustangs like little more than a speed bump on their way to the Second Round. The final score in this laugher was Ferris State 65 Midwestern State 34.
HORNETS STING UMD – Wrapping up Round One of the playoffs in Division Two was this game. The 4th seeded EMPORIA STATE HORNETS did battle with the 5th seeded UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA AT DULUTH BULLDOGS. The Hornets easily defeated the Bulldogs, manhandling them all the way in a FIFTY-NINE to TWENTY-SIX smackdown.
*** NCAA DIVISION THREE ***
CHAOS IN CRESTVIEW HILLS – The WITTENBERG UNIVERSITY TIGERS took it on the road against the THOMAS MORE COLLEGE SAINTS in this First Round game. After a scoreless opening Quarter the Tigers took a 17-7 lead into Halftime. The 3rd Quarter ended with the Saints tying things up at 17-17 and the 4th ended with a score of 24-24. In Overtime Wittenberg put up 7 points followed by Thomas More College scoring a TD. The Tigers blocked the PAT and returned it for 2, making the final score 33-30.
CATS OVER COWBOYS – The LINFIELD COLLEGE WILDCATS did battle with the homestanding HARDIN-SIMMONS UNIVERSITY COWBOYS yesterday. The Wildcats trailed 3-0 in the 1st Quarter but led the Cowboys 14-10 at the break. In the 2nd Half Linfield shut out HSU while adding 10 points of their own for a 24-10 victory.
WHEN IS AN UPSET NOT REALLY AN UPSET? – When the UNIVERSITY OF MOUNT UNION PURPLE RAIDERS have to go on the road in the Opening Round. A loss on the last day of the regular season put the Defending Champion Purple Raiders in this position. They visited the HOBART AND SMITH COLLEGE STATESMEN and parlayed a 21-14 Halftime lead into a 38-17 win.
MORE OVERTIME PLAYOFF DRAMA – The ALFRED UNIVERSITY SAXONS welcomed their First Round foes the BRIDGEWATER STATE BEARS to Yunevich Stadium. A 3-0 Saxons lead in the 1st Quarter became an even tighter 10-9 edge at the Half. The Bears grabbed a 24-17 lead of their own in the 3rd Quarter but Alfred U came back to tie it 27-27, forcing Overtime. In that extra session the Saxons shut out Bridgewater State then scored a TD for a 33-27 triumph.
FORGET IT, JAKE. IT’S COLLEGEVILLE – Collegeville, MN – home of the SAINT JOHN’S UNIVERSITY JOHNNIES – witnessed their team take on the UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN AT PLATTEVILLE PIONEERS. The 1st Quarter ended knotted up at 7-7 but by the break the Johnnies led 10-7. The Pioneers went up 24-20 in the 3rd Quarter but Saint John’s soared back to win this Instant Classic 32-31.
KOHAWKS ADVANCE – The COE COLLEGE KOHAWKS advanced to the next round over their opponents the visiting MONMOUTH (IL) COLLEGE FIGHTING SCOTS. The Kohawks trailed the Fighting Scots 7-0 in the 1st Quarter but tied it up at 7-7 by Halftime. A 21-7 Coe College lead in the 3rd Quarter held up for a 21-14 victory.
GOLDEN BEARS MAUL EAGLES – The WESTERN NEW ENGLAND COLLEGE GOLDEN BEARS held serve against the HUSSON UNIVERSITY EAGLES yesterday. It was a brawl at first, with a 7-7 tie in the 1st Quarter and a 14-14 tie at the break. The 2nd Half saw Western New England’s offense explode for a 44-27 rout.
SECOND OF THE BIG TWO MOVES ON – The UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN AT WHITEWATER WARHAWKS – the team that has ruled D3 football with Mt Union for the past decade – won their First Round game, too. The Warhawks led their guests the LAKELAND COLLEGE MUSKIES 31-7 by the midpoint on their way to a 45-27 win.
THE BIRDS AND THE BEES – This game pitted the homestanding JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY BLUE JAYS against the RANDOLPH MACON COLLEGE YELLOW JACKETS. The undefeated Blue Jays led it 21-0 in the 1st Quarter, 28-14 at Halftime and 35-14 in the 3rd before winning the game 42-21.
DOVER, DELAWARE DUEL AT DRASS – Drass Field, home of the WESLEY COLLEGE WOLVERINES, was the site of a gridiron clash with the STEVENSON UNIVERSITY MUSTANGS. The Mustangs put some fear in the Wolverine faithful with a 7-0 1st Quarter lead but by the break Wesley came back for a 17-10 advantage. The Wolverines coasted in the 2nd Half for a 38-17 triumph.
CRUSADE IN TEXAS – The UNIVERSITY OF MARY HARDIN-BAYLOR CRUSADERS hosted the UNIVERSITY OF REDLANDS BULLDOGS. The Crusaders spent the 1st Half playing catchup, trailing the Bulldogs 14-7 in the opening Quarter and 21-14 at Halftime. From there UMHB came alive, outscoring Redlands 36-17 in the 2nd Half to win the game 50-28.
BLOWOUT IN UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS – In this game the JOHN CARROLL UNIVERSITY BLUE STREAKS – alma mater of the NFL’s London Fletcher – faced the OLIVET COLLEGE COMETS. The Blue Streaks grabbed a 13-0 1st Quarter lead and never looked back, ultimately crushing the Comets to the tune of 37-12.
CARDINALS PECK APART THE ENGINEERS – The NORTH CENTRAL (IL) CARDINALS advanced to the next round of the D3 playoffs with an easy win over the visiting ROSE HULMAN UNIVERSITY ENGINEERS. It was a reasonable 17-7 lead for the Cardinals over the Engineers at the break but in the 2nd Half North Central annihilated their opponents in a 41-7 laugher.
MCVICTORY AT MCCULLY – McCully Stadium, home of the WHEATON (IL) COLLEGE THUNDER, was rocking on Saturday as the Thunder hosted the HUNTINGDON COLLEGE HAWKS. A 35-3 Halftime lead for Wheaton should give you an idea why. From there the Thunder destroyed the Hawks 45-10.
OSHKOSH B’GOSH – The UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN AT OSHKOSH TITANS squared off against their guests the WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY IN SAINT LOUIS BEARS. It was only close in the 1st Quarter, which ended in a 7-0 Titans lead. From there Oshkosh rolled, winning in the end by a count of 49-13.
SHUTOUT – The UNIVERSITY OF SAINT THOMAS TOMMIES managed a work of defensive perfection yesterday while not stinting on the offense. The Tommies hosted the UNIVERSITY OF NORTHWESTERN (MN) EAGLES and proceeded to thrash them for having such an unimaginitive name. Saint Thomas led 15-0 in the 1st Quarter enroute to a FORTY-THREE to NOTHING massacre.
*** CCCAA ***
NATIONAL BOWL – The CCCAA incorporates its playoffs into its Bowl structure. The National Bowl was one of the semifinals in the Southern Division. This game pitted the top seeded FULLERTON COLLEGE HORNETS against the 4 seeds – the VENTURA COLLEGE PIRATES. The Hornets led the Pirates 14-7 in the 1st Quarter, 31-14 at Halftime and 45-28 to end the 3rd. In the 4th Quarter Fullerton had to withstand a Ventura rally for a 48-42 win.
SO-CAL BOWL – This Bowl was the second semifinal in the Southern Division of the CCCAA. The 2 seeds – the RIVERSIDE CITY COLLEGE TIGERS – did battle with the 3rd seeded SADDLEBACK COLLEGE GAUCHOS. The score was a reasonably tight 21-14 in favor of the Tigers at the break and 28-21 after 3 Quarters of play. From there Riverside City College outscored the Gauchos 21-17 to advance with a 49-38 victory.
NOR-CAL CLASSIC BOWL – This was the first semifinal in the Northern Division of the CCCAA and saw the top seeded BUTTE COLLEGE ROADRUNNERS take on the 4 seeds – the COLLEGE OF SAN MATEO BULLDOGS. The Roadrunners scored once in each of the first two Quarters for a 14-0 Halftime advantage. They stayed on top of the Bulldogs in the 2nd Half to win the game 30-12.
NORTH STATE BOWL – In this second semifinal of the Northern Division the 2 seeds – the AMERICAN RIVER COLLEGE BEAVERS – played the 3rd seeded MODESTO COLLEGE PIRATES. The Beavers trailed the Pirates 14-0 to end the 1st Quarter but knotted things up at 14-14 by Halftime. After the break American River College managed some separation from Modesto College to win a 27-21 Instant Classic.
BALLADEER’S BLOG WILL PRESENT THE RESULTS OF THE NON-PLAYOFF BOWLS IN D3 AND THE CCCAA TOMORROW.