|Sioux Falls beats Carroll 23-7 for NAIA title|
|Written by Admin|
|Saturday, 20 December 2008 10:28|
The title was the South Dakota school's third and avenged a 17-9 loss to Carroll in the championship game last year. Carroll, located in Helena, Mont., had won 28 consecutive games and five of the past six NAIA championships. Sioux Falls won titles in 1996 and 2006.
Brown, a junior quarterback, connected with Jon Ryan on a 54-yard touchdown pass with 7:04 left in the game to put Sioux Falls (14-0) ahead 17-7. Carroll (13-1) came back with a 39-yard touchdown pass from Matt Ritter to Travis Brown with 6:15 remaining, but Drew DeGroot picked up a Ritter fumble and returned it 30 yards for the clinching touchdown with 2:44 left.
Sioux Falls' Matt Lindren kicked a 24-yard field goal with 3:15 left in the first quarter. The Cougars went up 10-0 with 13:12 remaining before halftime when Kyle Cummings blocked a Carroll punt and Joe Moen ran it in from 10 yards out.
ve player of the game and Cummings, a junior linebacker, won the defensive award.
The NAIA championship game was played in Rome, located 75 miles northwest of Atlanta, for the first time and drew a sellout of 6,500 at Barron Stadium despite rainy weather.