2000 Playoffs

Matt LaVerde, Todd Braden, defensive coordinator Don Montgomery, Mike Miller and Jesse Pearson celebrate Mount Union's win in Stagg Bowl XXVIII.
Photo by Fred Cockrill, Cockrill Studio

Right foot, right time

Junior kicker Rodney Chenos redeemed himself for a fourth-quarter miss by nailing a 20-yard field goal with one second left in the game to lift Mount Union to its fifth Division III national championship, defeating St. John's 10-7 in a memorable Stagg Bowl XXVIII.

It was the second-lowest scoring output in Stagg Bowl and the Purple Raiders tied for the fewest points scored by a Stagg Bowl winner. Keith McMillan recalls a memorable weekend in Salem.

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The 2000 season marked the second consecutive playoffs in which a No. 7 seed from the West Region advanced all the way to the Stagg Bowl. And under legendary coach John Gagliardi, they nearly became the second in a row to win the title. But instead, on a rainy day in Salem, it was the other legendary coach, Larry Kehres, who returned to the top of Division III.

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Playoff results

North bracket
at No. 4 Ohio Northern 47, No. 5 Millikin 21
No. 6 Hanover 20, at No. 3 Hope 3
at No. 2 Wittenberg 31, No. 7 Aurora 20

East bracket
at No. 4 Springfield 31, No. 5 Montclair State 29
No. 6 Widener 33, at No. 3 Union 26
at No. 2 Hobart 25, No. 7 Bridgewater State 0

West bracket
at No. 4 Central 29, No. 5 St. Norbert 14
No. 6 Pacific Lutheran 41, at No. 3 Bethel 13
No. 7 St. John's 26, at No. 2 UW-Stout 19

South bracket
No. 6 Western Maryland 38, at No. 4 Emory and Henry 14
at No. 7 Trinity (Texas) 21, No. 3 Wesley 3
No. 5 Bridgewater (Va.) 59, at No. 2 Washington and Jefferson 42

Second round
at No. 1 Mount Union 59, No. 4 Ohio Northern 28
at No. 2 Wittenberg 32, No. 6 Hanover 21
No. 4 Springfield 13, at No. 1 Brockport State 6
at No. 6 Widener 40, No. 2 Hobart 14
No. 4 Central 20, at No. 1 Linfield 17 (OT)
No. 7 St. John's 28, at No. 6 Pacific Lutheran 21 (OT)
at No. 1 Hardin-Simmons 32, No. 6 Western Maryland 10
No. 7 Trinity (Texas) 47, No. 5 Bridgewater 41 (OT)

Quarterfinals
at Mount Union 32, Wittenberg 15
Widener 61, at Springfield 27
St. John's 21, at Central 18
at Hardin-Simmons 33, Trinity (Texas) 30

Semifinals
at Mount Union 70, Widener 30
St. John's 38, at Hardin-Simmons 14

Stagg Bowl XXVIII
at Salem, Va.
Mount Union 10, St. John's 7 

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