IUP ready to take on Shepherd in Division II football playoffs
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The PSAC is considered one of the best Division II football conferences, and that strength is a big reason three PSAC teams qualified for the playoffs.
IUP (10-1), which beat Shippensburg Saturday in the conference title game, earned the No. 3 seed in the East Region and will play host to Shepherd College Saturday at George P. Miller Stadium in a first-round game.
They will be joined in the playoffs by Shippensburg (10-1) and Bloomsburg (10-1), which earned the No. 4 and No. 5 seeds in the East.
The two teams will meet in a first-round game at Shippensburg in a rematch from three weeks ago. Shippensburg won, 49-42, on a late touchdown to take the PSAC East title.
If the second matchup is anything like the first, it could be the best first-round game of the weekend. The Red Raiders led at the half, 35-7, but Bloomsburg made a furious rally to tie the score, 42-42, late in the fourth quarter before Shippensburg made the game-winning drive.
If IUP wins Saturday it will play on the road against No. 2 seed New Haven in the second round. The winner between Bloomsburg and Shippensburg will advance to play Winston-Salem University.
Only one district team, Presidents' Athletic Conference champion Washington & Jefferson, qualified for the Division III playoffs, which begin Saturday.
The Presidents (8-2) will play at Centennial Conference champion Johns Hopkins at noon at Homewood Field in Baltimore.
The winner of the game actually may turn out to be the loser, as it will likely have to play perennial Division III powerhouse Mount Union in the second round.
The Presidents clinched their spot in the playoffs with a 31-14 win against Waynesburg (9-1) Saturday to decide the PAC champion.
The Presidents' success against Waynesburg was largely due to a big day from the defense, led by senior linebacker John Hunter, a Pine-Richland graduate.
Hunter had a career-high 15 tackles, including 3 1/2 for losses, and as a result was one of 25 players nationally named to the D3football.com "Team of the Week"
Hunter is second on the team with 82 total tackles, first with 12 tackles for loss and second with 3.5 sacks.
The Carlow women's soccer team won the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship and will play in the NAIA championships, which begin Saturday.
The Celtics will play Spring Arbor, a team from Michigan, in a first-round game. If they win, they will advance to Orange Beach, Ala., where the tournament will finish.
Carlow (15-2-1) won the KIAC championship by beating Point Park, 1-0, in overtime in the title game.
The winning goal was scored by Amanda Cotherman, a senior from Norwin.
Gannon freshman Mani Brueckner has had quite a season and, considering she is a freshman, what she accomplished this season is simply amazing.
Brueckner, a Mars graduate, led Gannon with 10 goals and 13 assists.
Her 33 points are the fourth-highest total in school history, and her 13 assists were a school record and tied for third in Division II this season.
Not surprisingly, she was named the PSAC player of the year and freshman of the year, the first player to capture both awards since 2006. She also was selected to the All-PSAC team.
First Published November 15, 2012 12:00 am