FIRST SEMIFINAL – The MORNINGSIDE COLLEGE MUSTANGS were hosting the defending National Champions – the UNIVERSITY OF SAINT FRANCIS COUGARS. Just as much as the Mustangs were fighting USF they were also fighting their history of playoff chokes in recent years.
After nabbing a quick 21-7 1st Quarter lead Morningside College saw the Cougars pull to 28-14 at Halftime and 28-21 in the 3rd before forcing Overtime with a 28-28 tie to end the 4th. This time the Mustangs didn’t choke and after shutting out USF in the extra session they scored a TD for a 34-28 OT triumph.
SECOND SEMIFINAL – In this game the BENEDICTINE COLLEGE RAVENS traveled to take on the KANSAS WESLEYAN UNIVERSITY COYOTES. Not only did this clash end in an Upset but it was an odd tale of two halves. By the break the Coyotes had come back from being down 13-0 in the opening Quarter to trailing the Ravens by a much tighter score of 20-14.
After the break Benedictine College proceeded to utterly dominate the game. They led Kansas Wesleyan 40-21 in the 3rd Quarter then put up 3 more points in the 4th to seal a 43-21 Upset. December 15th in Daytona Beach it will be the Ravens vs the Mustangs for the 2018 NAIA title.
NCAA DIVISION TWO
FIRST QUARTERFINAL – The MINNESOTA STATE MAVERICKS welcomed the TARLETON STATE TEXANS yesterday. The Texans kept the Mavericks off the scoreboard for three entire Quarters, leading 3-0 in the 1st Quarter and 10-0 at Halftime, a score that remained unchanged to end the 3rd. In the 4th Quarter Minnesota State roared back to win the game 13-10.
SECOND QUARTERFINAL – The home-standing NOTRE DAME COLLEGE FALCONS clashed with the SLIPPERY ROCK UNIVERSITY ROCK (sic) in this contest. A 7-3 Falcons edge in the opening Quarter became a 21-10 lead by the Half. From there a steady rainfall made the 2nd Half a defensive struggle. The Rock pulled to within 21-17 but no further as Notre Dame College advanced to the Semifinals.
THIRD QUARTERFINAL – The FERRIS STATE BULLDOGS took it on the road Saturday to do battle with the OUACHITA BAPTIST UNIVERSITY TIGERS. The Bulldogs never really let the favored Tigers in the game as they parlayed a 27-0 Halftime lead into a 37-14 blowout victory when everything was said and done.
FOURTH QUARTERFINAL – This game pitted the VALDOSTA STATE BLAZERS against the visiting LENOIR-RHYNE UNIVERSITY BEARS. This game was even more lopsided than the Ferris State-Ouachita Baptist clash. The Blazers held a commanding 34-7 lead at the break on their way to a SIXTY-ONE to TWENTY-ONE beatdown.
NCAA DIVISION THREE
FIRST QUARTERFINAL – The UNIVERSITY OF MARY HARDIN-BAYLOR CRUSADERS hosted the SAINT JOHN’S UNIVERSITY JOHNNIES on Saturday. A 7-0 1st Quarter lead for the Crusaders turned into a 7-3 game by the midpoint. The 3rd Quarter ended with UMHB on top of the Johnnies 14-3 but in an action-filled 4th Quarter the Crusaders had to hold on for a tight 21-18 win.
SECOND QUARTERFINAL – The UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN AT WHITEWATER WARHAWKS were out to prove that they really are back as they took on their guests the BETHEL (MN) ROYALS. The Warhawks led the Royals 23-12 come Halftime, then coasted to a 26-12 victory.
THIRD QUARTERFINAL – Up next the JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY BLUE JAYS mixed it up with the visiting RENSSELAER POLYTECHNICAL INSTITUTE ENGINEERS. The 1st Quarter ended in a 7-7 tie before the Blue Jays went up 17-7 at the break. From there Johns Hopkins University outscored the Engineers 20-7 to win it 37-14.
FOURTH QUARTERFINAL – Wrapping up the Division Three Quarterfinals was this game between the defending National Champions – the UNIVERSITY OF MOUNT UNION PURPLE RAIDERS and their guests the MUHLENBERG COLLEGE MULES. The Purple Raiders held a close 14-7 lead at the Half but then got more and more separation, defeating the Mules 38-10.
NCAA DIV TWO BOWL GAMES
LIVE UNITED BOWL – In this Bowl Game the MISSOURI WESTERN STATE GRIFFONS squared off against the SOUTHERN ARKANSAS UNIVERSITY MULERIDERS. The 1st Half seemed like this would be a blowout, as the Griffons led 10-0 in the 1st Quarter and 20-0 at Halftime. After the break the Muleriders outscored Missouri Western 25-10 as the Griffons held on by their fingertips for a 30-25 victory.
HEART OF TEXAS BOWL – This annual Bowl double-header is unique in that one game features an NCAA Division 2 matchup and the other features an NJCAA matchup. The UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL OKLAHOMA BRONCHOS (sic) played the ANGELO STATE RAMS in the D2 ticket. The Rams led 14-10 at the break and 24-13 in the 3rd Quarter. The Bronchos exploded for 28 points in the 4th to win it 41-34.
CORSICANA BOWL – The EMPORIA STATE HORNETS took on the UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS AT MONTICELLO BOLL WEEVILS in this Bowl. After a 6-6 1st Quarter tie the Hornets took an 18-9 advantage into the locker room. By the end of the 3rd Quarter the Boll Weevils had cut the ESU lead to just 24-19 but the Hornets squeezed out a little more room for a 30-22 triumph.
MINERAL WATER BOWL – From Excelsior Springs, MO came this D2 Bowl which pitted the MISSOURI S&T MINERS against the MINNESOTA STATE AT MOORHEAD DRAGONS. A 6-0 Dragons lead in the opening Quarter was the only MSU-Moorhead advantage the entire game. By Halftime the Miners were on top 21-9 and they never looked back from there, going on to win the game in a FIFTY-ONE to SIXTEEN blowout.
NJCAA BOWL GAMES
SALT CITY BOWL – The storied HUTCHINSON COLLEGE BLUE DRAGONS took the field against the NAVARRO COLLEGE BULLDOGS yesterday. The Blue Dragons converted a 7-0 1st Quarter edge into a 21-6 lead by the midpoint. Neither team scored in the 3rd Quarter, followed by Hutchinson College putting it away by a final score of 35-6.
VALLEY OF THE SUN BOWL – In this Bowl the BLINN COLLEGE BUCCANEERS went head to head with the SCOTTSDALE COLLEGE FIGHTING ARTICHOKES. A very early 7-0 Buccaneers lead remained unchanged until the Fighting Artichokes knotted things up at 7-7 right before Halftime. The 3rd Quarter ended with Blinn College up 17-7 and a fierce Scottsdale rally in the 4th fell short as the Bucs won it 23-20.
EL TORO BOWL – Staying in Arizona for the moment the LACKAWANNA COLLEGE FALCONS went up against the ARIZONA WESTERN COLLEGE MATADORS in this game. The Falcons led 7-0 in the 1st Quarter and 17-3 at the break. The Matadors pulled to within 17-10 in the 3rd Quarter and with neither team scoring in the 4th, 17-10 was the final tally as well.
HEART OF TEXAS BOWL – The NJCAA matchup in this Bowl double-header event pitted the KILGORE COLLEGE RANGERS against the PIMA COLLEGE AZTECS. The Rangers achieved Defensive Perfection, shutting out the Aztecs. By the Half Kilgore College was in front 15-0 and by the time all was said and done the Rangers had triumphed 28-zip.
RED GRANGE BOWL – A very wet game saw the NASSAU COLLEGE LIONS do battle with the NORTHLAND COLLEGE PIONEERS. The Lions seized control from the start, scoring on their first four possessions to end the 1st Quarter with a 17-0 lead. The Pioneers made it a 17-6 game in the 2nd but Nassau College led 24-6 by Halftime. From there the Lions coasted for a 46-6 blowout win.
SUNDAY’S NJCAA BOWLS
GRAPHIC EDGE BOWL: FEATURE GAME – The Main Event in this Double-Header Bowl Event pitted the IOWA WESTERN COLLEGE REIVERS against the SNOW COLLEGE BADGERS. A 6-0 1st Quarter edge for the Reivers became 13-7 at the midpoint. The Badgers pulled to within 16-14 to end the 3rd Quarter but Iowa Western held on for a 19-17 victory in the end.
MIDWEST CLASSIC BOWL – The BUTLER (KS) GRIZZLIES did battle with the NORTHEASTERN OKLAHOMA A&M GOLDEN NORSEMEN. The Golden Norsemen were on top 21-19 come Halftime but the Grizzlies went up 26-21 in the 3rd Quarter on their way to pulling off a 34-30 Upset.
GRAPHIC EDGE BOWL: OPENING GAME – Kicking off this Bowl Double-Header was the game between the IOWA CENTRAL COLLEGE TRITONS and the MONROE COLLEGE MUSTANGS. The Tritons led 14-6 in the 1st Quarter and 21-6 to end the 2nd. After the break the Mustangs outscored Iowa Central College 14-13 but the Tritons won it 34-20.
MISSISSIPPI BOWL – The JONES COUNTY COLLEGE BOBCATS took the field against the EASTERN ARIZONA COLLEGE GILA MONSTERS. The Gila Monsters held their only lead of the game at 7-3 in the opening Quarter. Halftime saw the Bobcats on top 13-7. In the 2nd Half Jones County College shut out Eastern Arizona College for an authoritative 27-7 rout.
Many helmets courtesy of the Helmet Project.