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1999 Playoffs: PLU rolls in Salem

Tim Lax
Despite giving up 70 pounds, PLU senior linebacker Tim Lax brought down Rowan tight end David Sadowski en route to nine total tackles and three for loss.
Photo by Pat Coleman, D3football.com

The Lutes traveled halfway around the world to get there and rolled up 42 points as they upended Rowan 42-13 in Stagg Bowl XXVII. We also take a look at the feel-good Lutes and the kids who buy into head coach Frosty Westering's system.

Take a look back at preview information and see which of our experts picked Pacific Lutheran to win.

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Playoff roundup

Quarterfinals
West seventh-seeded Pacific Lutheran rallied with 13 unanswered second-half points to defeat St. John's 19-9 and earn a trip to San Antonio and become the first-ever seven seed to reach the national semifinals. OK, it's the first year of seven-team brackets, but that's still impressive. Hardin-Simmons drove from their 35-yard line to the Trinity 15 with five seconds left but was unable to get the ball in the end zone and falls to the top-seeded Tigers 40-33. The Cowboys again suffered from turnovers, coughing up the ball eight times. Ohio Northern's Cinderella season came to a shocking conclusion, as Mount Union pulled off another second-half rout in winning 56-31. The Polar Bears had led 16-14 at the half before the machine scored four third-quarter touchdowns. And Rowan put together a Mount Union-like burst of its own with 21 fourth-quarter points to put Montclair State away 42-13. All the final scores, plus game stories.

Second-round action
Two No. 1 seeds went one-and-out Saturday afternoon, as Western Connecticut lost to Montclair State 32-24 and Pacific Lutheran blew out Wartburg 49-14. That sets up PLU at St. John's next week in the West final, and Rowan at Montclair State in the East. In the North, Ohio Northern romped past Wittenberg 58-24, setting up a rematch at Mount Union, while it's an all-Texas final in the South, with Hardin-Simmons at Trinity. All the scores, including game stories. Plus, Western Connecticut doesn't file the paperwork to host a third-round game and only avoids an embarrassing road trip to New Jersey by losing.

First round: Wisconsin ousted
For all the talk about Wisconsin power, the Badger State went 0-3 in opening-week playoff action. UW-La Crosse lost 38-17, UW-Stevens Point lost 23-10 and St. Norbert lost 39-32. Washington & Jefferson recorded the first big upset of the postseason as it toppled Lycoming 14-7. Did we say the key was defense? Also advancing: Pacific Lutheran, Hardin-Simmons, Rowan, Montclair State, Ursinus, Central, Wittenberg, Ohio Northern, Augustana, St. John's and Western Maryland.

Stagg Bowl XXVII

at Salem, Va.
Pacific Lutheran 42, Rowan 13

Semifinals
Rowan 24, Mount Union 17 (OT)
Pacific Lutheran 49, Trinity (Texas) 28

North Bracket 1. Mount Union 42
5. Augustana 33
1. Mount Union 56
4. Ohio Northern 31
5. Augustana 39
7. St. Norbert 32
3. Hanover 14
4. Ohio Northern 56
4. Ohio Northern 58
2. Wittenberg 24
2. Wittenberg 42
6. Alma 19
East Bracket 1. Western Connecticut 24
4. Montclair State 32
4. Montclair State 13
5. Rowan 42
4. Montclair State 37
6. Buffalo State 34
3. RPI 10
5. Rowan 29
5. Rowan 55
7. Ursinus 0
2. Bridgewater State 38
7. Ursinus 43
West Bracket 1. Wartburg 14
7. Pacific Lutheran 49
7. Pacific Lutheran 19
2. St. John's 9
6. Willamette 24
7. Pacific Lutheran 28
3. UW-La Crosse 17
4. Central 38
4. Central 9
2. St. John's 10
2. St. John's 23
6. UW-Stevens Point 10
South Bracket 1. Trinity 20
4. Western Maryland 16
1. Trinity 40
3. Hardin-Simmons 33
4. Western Maryland 20
5. Catholic 16
3. Hardin-Simmons 28
7. Washington U. 21
3. Hardin-Simmons 51
6. Washington & Jefferson 3
2. Lycoming 7
6. Washington & Jefferson 14

Selection Sunday analysis

Surprises? Sure, there are some surprises. We were quite surprised to see Western Connecticut gain the top seed in the East, as we had been projecting Lycoming to slide into that region. It appears that Lycoming's nine-game schedule might have hurt them, as Trinity is seeded ahead of them. In fact, it appears that the seeding is almost all by winning percentage. How else can we explain Bridgewater State, the champion of the weakest automatic qualifying conference, getting a No. 2 seed?

Other items of note: Western Maryland and Catholic finally play each other, in their third consecutive season reaching the South Bracket together. The last two years, they've each gone 10-0 through the regular season and lost to Lycoming and Trinity in the first round of the playoffs.

Of the four Pool C teams selected, not one got a home game. One did get a No. 4 seed (Central) but will be playing on the road thanks to the West bracket geography. And that's primarily caused by the selection of two Northwest Conference teams.

NCAA national football committee chair Mike Clary summed that up this way: "We felt all along that Pacific Lutheran was a strong team and Willamette by virtue of a great win against Linfield yesterday worked into the tournament. It was just a good pairing for us there."

Also, Pacific Lutheran's only loss on the season is to Willamette. Willamette is one of two three-loss teams in the field (the other is AQ UW-La Crosse), but two of those losses were to an NAIA and a Division II team.

Nov. 10: All times Eastern
Final
Coast Guard 26, at Merchant Marine 12
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Final
at Catholic 20, Maine Maritime 14
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at Amherst 45, Williams 14
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at Stevenson 34, FDU-Florham 0
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Westfield State 27, at Western Connecticut 13
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Hamilton 38, at Bates 13
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Husson 21, at Plymouth State 10
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Final
SUNY-Maritime 34, at Gallaudet 7
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at Bridgewater State 21, Massachusetts Maritime 7
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Final
at Nichols 39, Curry 29
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Union 34, at RPI 10
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at MIT 22, Springfield 7
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Final
Framingham State 47, at Worcester State 6
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Fitchburg State 32, at Mass-Dartmouth 29
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Trinity (Conn.) 9, at Wesleyan 0
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Muhlenberg 53, at Moravian 7
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at WPI 20, Norwich 17
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at Johns Hopkins 42, McDaniel 17
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at Dean 19, Anna Maria 13
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King's 45, at Wilkes 0
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Ithaca 24, at Cortland 21
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Final
Denison 61, at Kenyon 7
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Alfred 41, at Rochester 13
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at University of New England 42, Alvernia 27
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Tufts 35, at Middlebury 13
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Salve Regina 47, at Endicott 34
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Final
at Brevard 28, Greensboro 7
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Final
Brockport 49, at Morrisville State 7
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Final
Montclair State 24, at William Paterson 0
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Lycoming 21, at Misericordia 14
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at Colby 30, Bowdoin 14
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Westminster (Pa.) 21, at Geneva 7
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Final
at Christopher Newport 16, Wesley 14
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at St. John Fisher 31, Buffalo State 28
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Averett 22, at Methodist 13
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Franklin and Marshall 34, at Gettysburg 10
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TCNJ 33, at Southern Virginia 30
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Hobart 42, at St. Lawrence 31
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at Western New England 52, Becker 0
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Final
at Susquehanna 24, Juniata 6
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at Bethany 35, St. Vincent 0
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Final - 2OT
at Lebanon Valley 30, Albright 24
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Final
at Ursinus 31, Dickinson 0
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Hope 33, at Adrian 14
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Final - OT
Shenandoah 27, at Washington and Lee 24
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Final
at Castleton 21, Alfred State 3
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at Albion 35, Olivet 19
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Final
Washington and Jefferson 33, at Waynesburg 14
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Randolph-Macon 48, at Hampden-Sydney 35
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Trine 48, at Kalamazoo 18
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Final
Wittenberg 27, at Wooster 21
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at Emory and Henry 70, Guilford 27
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Final
at Ohio Wesleyan 40, Hiram 12
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Final - OT
at Frostburg State 38, Salisbury 35
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Final
at Maryville (Tenn.) 31, N.C. Wesleyan 14
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Utica 75, at Hartwick 14
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Final
at John Carroll 45, Baldwin Wallace 35
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Final
at Louisiana College 45, Howard Payne 13
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at Minnesota-Morris 21, Greenville 13
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at Concordia (Wis.) 21, Wisconsin Lutheran 14
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Coe 26, at Luther 7
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at Northwestern (Minn.) 28, Iowa Wesleyan 0
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at MacMurray 34, St. Scholastica 20
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Final - OT
at Aurora 25, Lakeland 22
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Final
Benedictine 54, at Concordia-Chicago 41
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at Chicago 48, Lake Forest 16
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at Washington U. 44, Carroll 6
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Final
at Wabash 24, DePauw 17
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Final
Delaware Valley 33, at Widener 0
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Final
at Allegheny 47, Oberlin 14
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Capital 33, at Muskingum 28
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Final
at Grove City 42, Thiel 15
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at Heidelberg 49, Ohio Northern 17
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Final
Otterbein 34, at Wilmington 24
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Final
at Mount Union 49, Marietta 7
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Final
at Rose-Hulman 70, Earlham 6
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Final
Hanover 23, at Franklin 20
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Final
Manchester 35, at Anderson 6
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at Bluffton 34, Defiance 7
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Final
Alma 37, at Finlandia 0
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Final
Bridgewater 42, at Ferrum 21
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at Huntingdon 42, LaGrange 14
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Final
Carthage 38, at Augustana 9
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at Trinity (Texas) 21, Berry 17
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at Eureka 38, Rockford 7
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Rhodes 21, at Austin 14
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Final
at Southwestern 59, Texas Lutheran 35
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Final
at Hardin-Simmons 83, McMurry 6
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Gustavus Adolphus 29, at St. Olaf 20
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Final
Centre 56, at Birmingham-Southern 20
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Final
at Hamline 27, Augsburg 9
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Final
at Concordia-Moorhead 51, Carleton 14
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Final
Simpson 56, at Buena Vista 7
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Wartburg 47, at Dubuque 28
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Final
at Martin Luther 47, Crown 18
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Final
Central 37, at Loras 34
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Final
at North Central (Ill.) 55, Millikin 12
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at Wheaton (Ill.) 79, Elmhurst 0
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at St. John's 63, Thomas More 23
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at Millsaps 28, Hendrix 21
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UW-Whitewater 49, at UW-Platteville 21
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Final
Illinois Wesleyan 40, at North Park 13
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Cornell 13, at Lawrence 6
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at St. Norbert 10, Monmouth 7
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at Ripon 38, Knox 19
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Grinnell 41, at Beloit 31
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Illinois College 35, at Macalester 28
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at Bethel 21, St. Thomas 15
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Final
UW-Stevens Point 39, at UW-River Falls 25
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Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, at East Texas Baptist 15
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at UW-Oshkosh 27, UW-Stout 13
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Final
UW-La Crosse 42, at UW-Eau Claire 0
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Final
Cal Lutheran 58, at Whittier 21
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Final
Pacific Lutheran 28, at Lewis and Clark 14
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at Chapman 55, La Verne 34
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Final
at Redlands 52, Occidental 20
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Final
at Linfield 50, Pacific 7
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Final
at Pomona-Pitzer 24, Claremont-Mudd-Scripps 19
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at George Fox 62, Puget Sound 48
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Whitworth 52, at Willamette 0
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Final - OT
Carnegie Mellon 29, at Case Western Reserve 23
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Final
Belhaven 8, at Sul Ross State 0
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Nov. 10: All times Eastern
Final
Union 34, at RPI 10
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Final
Muhlenberg 53, at Moravian 7
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Final
at Johns Hopkins 42, McDaniel 17
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Final
Brockport 49, at Morrisville State 7
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Final
Trine 48, at Kalamazoo 18
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Final - OT
at Frostburg State 38, Salisbury 35
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Final
Wittenberg 27, at Wooster 21
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Final
Washington and Jefferson 33, at Waynesburg 14
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Final
at John Carroll 45, Baldwin Wallace 35
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Final
Delaware Valley 33, at Widener 0
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Final
at Mount Union 49, Marietta 7
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Final
at Wheaton (Ill.) 79, Elmhurst 0
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Final
at Trinity (Texas) 21, Berry 17
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Final
at Hardin-Simmons 83, McMurry 6
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at St. John's 63, Thomas More 23
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Final
UW-Whitewater 49, at UW-Platteville 21
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Final
at North Central (Ill.) 55, Millikin 12
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Final
Illinois Wesleyan 40, at North Park 13
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at Bethel 21, St. Thomas 15
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Final
Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, at East Texas Baptist 15
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at Linfield 50, Pacific 7
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Final
Whitworth 52, at Willamette 0
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Final - OT
Carnegie Mellon 29, at Case Western Reserve 23
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