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Georgetown College football has not struggled much over Bill Cronin's tenure. Most of the numbers are in the Tigers favor as the veteran coach has built a tradition rich program. However, GC is not the best when it comes to trailing at the break. Saturday on the road, the No. 6 Tigers (6-1, 3-0 MSC East) erased an eight-point halftime deficit to win 37-26.
Going the game against University of Pikeville, the Tigers were 5-19 in games when trailing at the half. GC scored on its first possession of the third, but failed on the two-point conversion to still be down two. UPike (2-6, 2-2) marched the distance for a chance to hold another touchdown lead and things looked bleak.
Insert Josh Harris. He blocked the extra point and Ryan Sowder scooped, went the distance for a two-point play for GC. Down 26-20 with the ball late in the third, Neal Pawsat found AJ Johnson on a fourth down play for the winning touchdown.
Neal Pawsat set a couple of records, got close to a couple of others and Georgetown College football got back to its winning ways Saturday. Monday afternoon Pawsat picked up another honor – Mid-South Conference Offensive Player of the Week. This is his second time garnering this award this season.
The senior quarterback threw five touchdowns, one shy of tying the in-game record for passing touchdowns. His second scoring toss was a 94-yard strike to Ben Patenaude that became the longest pass play from scrimmage in Georgetown history. He also threw for 378 yards, fourth best all-time in-game total for the quarterback from Maysville, Ky.
Coming into the game he was just 232 total passing yards behind offensive coordinator Eddie Eviston for all-time leading passer. He now holds the GC record at 9,428 with four regular season games to go. Pawsat is one touchdown pass from tying Eviston as career-leader in that category.
Nick Seither popped the ball loose from Blake Ingleton. Jerry Williams III fell on it. Two players later Neal Pawsat hooked up with Ben Patenaude for a 94-yard strike, breaking Georgetown College's longest pass completion and reception record set in 2003. The touchdown play also broke the back of visiting University of the Cumberlands on Homecoming.
The No. 9 Tigers (5-1, 2-0) rolled for a 42-13 win, bouncing back from the loss at Campbellsville University the week before.
"Have to give credit to the defense on that," said GC coach Bill Cronin. "Cumberlands was driving. They were on our two yard line looking to make it a one-score game. We pop the ball loose and Neal hits Ben in stride for a dagger.
"That was a huge emotional and momentum swing. We quickly got the ball back and make another quick drive for the second Neal to Ben touchdown."
Georgetown College's and Campbellsville University's defenses were allowing just more than two touchdowns a game between the pair before Saturday's showdown. However, in a rivalry game a lot of things can be thrown out the window. That was the case as the No. 3 Tigers (4-1) battled Campbellsville (4-2).
Georgetown had a chance, trailing by four with time running out on the Campbellsville three-yard line. Out of GC's final time out, Demonte Smith got the call for a one yard gain. Georgetown hustled to the line, Neal Pawsat's pass sailed through the back of the endzone, time expired and CU held on for the 28-24 win on Homecoming.
"We had out chance at the end of the game to make the play to win it," said GC coach Bill Cronin. "That's what you want in a classic game such as this. We thought we had power up front and that Demonte could make the three yards to the endzone. The plan was to spike it if we didn't, but Neal saw something so he didn't spike it and it just didn't work.
"Both teams played hard today. Campbellsville did a nice job and have to give them credit."
Defense is the name of the game. It has been a huge staple in Georgetown College tradition of success and certainly flexed its muscle Saturday against No. 4 Faulkner University in the NAIA Game of the Week. The No. 6 Tigers (4-0) had 13 sacks, one short of the national record, and handed the visiting Eagles (5-1) a 27-10 setback. This is a huge feat facing one of the most prolific scoring offenses and a quarterback that is averaging 399 yards of total offense.
"The whole plan was to get to him (Terrell Robinson)," said GC defensive coordinator Shan Housekeeper. "No one has done that this season. We knew if we were able to pressure him, make him think, the ball swings in our favor."
Swing it did. Faulkner came in as the fourth best offensive team in the nation, averaging 44.6 points per game. The team did not have a touchdown until early in the fourth quarter when an 81-yard pass play made it 20-10.
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