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An 18-play drive is the story as Georgetown College football secured a fourth straight postseason bid after opening the second half down three.
GC came out of the locker room, marched 74 yards, eating up more than nine minutes of the clock to take the lead for good in a 20-10 win over No. 15 Lindsey Wilson College.
"That was an impressive drive for us," said GC coach Bill Cronin. "We had a couple of really big plays along the way to keep the chains moving. Then Zach Sowder powered his way into the endzone. It was a demoralizing drive."
Georgetown converted three third downs and two fourth downs in the series. Neal Pawsat picked up the first fourth down conversion with a one-yard rush and LWC's pass interference on fourth and three put the Tigers inches from the goal line. Two players later Sowder punched it in and GC never looked back.
Pawsat, out the past two weeks with an injury, shrugged off a rough first quarter with two picks to orchestrate three scoring drives. He threw for 242 yards and two touchdowns on 22-of-37 passing.
The No. 14 Tigers (7-4, 5-1) will learn their playoff fate 4 pm Sunday through the NAIA Selection Show presentation. To watch it live click here.
Despite having its best season ever, No. 15 LWC (8-3, 3-3) will fall out of the top 16 spots and finish third in the Mid-South East. The loss to Kentucky Christian following a narrow loss to then No. 2 University of the Cumberlands will keep them out of postseason.
The Blue Raiders took an early 10-0 lead. After punting away on the first series, they took Pawsat's first errant throw into Georgetown territory. However, the intense defense of the Tigers were able to keep LWC to just a field goal.
Lindsey then took its first possession of the second quarter 93 yards on 12 plays for the first touchdown of the day.
"That's tough to get behind to a team such as Lindsey," Cronin said. "But I was proud of the way our guys kept fighting, and the heart they showed to win this game."
The teams exchanged scoreless drives before the Tigers finally began to click offensively. Pawsat's first down pass to Jesse Morrell ignited the crowd.
Pawsat went 5-of-8 on the drive and capped it with a dart to Bobby Chan-Chan. The freshman snatched the ball out of the air, maintained balance and got into the front corner of the endzone. This trimmed the deficit to three and LWC was satisfied with clocking the rest of the half.
Georgetown is 4-18 in the Bill Cronin era when trailing after two quarters.
However, this group of seniors were not to be denied. The team scored 20-unanswered points as the Tiger defense remained strong. It was a Pawsat to senior Branden Burdette that put the icing on the cake.
A couple of late LWC interceptions – one by Gordon Channing the other by Chaz Morton – also helped to seal the deal. Sowder got in one last rush on iHigh.com Field. GC was just attempting to drain the clock when the senior shed a few tacklers and then burst through a few more for a 43-yard gain that left just more than 30 seconds on the clock.
Two more rushes and the final horn sounded.
"This is what you play for," Cronin said. "We had a championship type atmosphere. Both teams battled hard. Now we wait to learn our fate and start preparing for postseason play."