‘Dawgs knock out TVCC, host NMMI for title

‘Dawgs knock out TVCC, host NMMI for title

By MIKE MONTFORT

ATHENS — SWJCFChaos.

That’s what occurred again on another routinely crazy Saturday afternoon of junior college football, and the tremors throughout East Texas also apparently were felt in other areas of the country.

Keith Speer Photo

Third-seeded Navarro (5-5) scored 20 fourth-quarter points and secured a 26-24  Southwest Junior College Football Conference Semifinal victory over eighth-ranked rival Trinity Valley as Quentin Lee caught a 20-yard, game-winning touchdown pass from Parker McNeil with 0:20 to play.

As the second seeded Cardinals’ season exploded into fluttering feathers across Bruce Field, first-time playoff entry NMMI pulled off a 20-10 stunner over top seeded Kilgore, the NJCAA’s No. 3 ranked team,  Coach Joe Forchtner’s fourth-seeded Broncos (6-4) advance to their first SWJCFC Championship game in their fourth year of competition here after leaving the old Western States Football League.

Keith Speer Photo

The upsets by SWJCFC’s lower seeds over Top-10 ranked teams Saturday seemed to cause a plate shift throughout the NJCAA. A total of nine teams in the Top 20 lost during the first weekend in November, including five of the Top 10.

Navarro, now as the highest remaining seed, will host the 24th SWJCFC Championship Game at 3 pm Saturday, Nov. 9 at Tiger Stadium.  The Bulldogs will be playing in their 11th SWJCFC title game since the league was formed in 1996.

There have been multiple matchups of third and fourth seeds for championship games during the SWJCFC’s lifetime.  Navarro’s been involved in two of them — 1998 (with NEO) and 2015 (with Kilgore), which was the last time the Bulldogs hosted the title game.

Entering Saturday play, TVCC’s rushing defense had allowed 88.9 yards per game, ranking ninth nationally in that NJCAA statistical category.

Keith Speer Photo

Navarro, ranking eighth in the SWJCFC in rushing, ran the football a season-high 42 times Saturday against the Cardinals — most attempts by the Bulldogs in their last 12 games.

Navarro’s 42 attempts for 168 yards featured season-highs from freshman Isaiah Robinson (21-130-0) and sophomore Kiante Stoker (11-47-1) in the Bulldogs’ win. Stoker, appearing in only his third game this season, doubled his season totals for carries and rushing yardage.  He also scored his first rushing touchdown of the season on a three-yard burst that thrust Navarro into a 19-18 lead with 4:35 left in the contest.

Trailing later 24-19, NC marched 80 yards in 1:12 behind McNeil, now also the SWJCFC’s career leader in completions, attempts, passing yardage and touchdown passes.

With the running game adding balance, McNeil threw for 234 yards on 24-of-37 passing with two touchdowns that brought his career TD total to 54.

NC finished with 415 yards offense from 80 offensive plays.

The Cardinals led a field-goal dominated first half, 12-6 — with NC’s points coming off 33- and 35-yard field goals by Will McDaniel.

TVCC had its own record-book watch on kicker Eddie Godina, who booted field goals of 50, 45, 36 and 42 yards.

His 50-yarder, giving the Cardinals their first points at 10:12 of the first period, was a conference-record breaking 20th of the season.  Navarro’s Benigno Heredia held the league’s single-season mark with 19.

Godina’s 42-yarder during the final period tied an NJCAA record of 23 by Snow’s Leonard Chitty in 1985.

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NAVARRO 26, TVCC 24 (FINAL)
SCORING BY QUARTERS:
Navarro……..3……3…..0……20 — 26
TVCC……….6……6…..3……9. — 24
SCORING SUMMARY:
First Quarter
10:12 — TVCC: Eddie Godina, 50-FG.
8:15 — TVCC: Eddie Godina, 45-FG.
4:45 — NC: Will McDaniel, 33-FG.
Second Quarter
8:44 — NC: Will McDaniel, 35-FG.
0:30 — TVCC: Keonta Fiakpui, 18-pass from Jeremy Hunt. (Kick failed)
Third Quarter
12:39 — TVCC: Eddie Godina, 36-FG.
10:20 — TVCC: Eddie Godina, 42-FG
Fourth Quarter 
14:50 — NC: Devin Morrison, 9-pass from Parker McNeil. (Will McDaniel kick).
4:35 — NC: Kiante Stoker, 3-run. (2xp pass failed).
1:32 — TVCC: Willie Cherry, 17-pass from Jeremy Hunt. (2xp pass failed).
0:20 — NC: Quentin Lee, 20-pass from Parker McNeil. (Will McDaniel kick).
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YARDSTICK..…NC….TV
First Downs……….23……..22
…..By Rush……..….11……..10
…..By Pass…………..12…….12
…..By Penalty………0………0
Rush-Yards…….42-168…..32-168
Passing Yards…….247……..267
C-A-I………….25-38-0……24-40-2
Total Offense……..415……..435
Return Yards……..197……….66
….KOR………….6-143…….4-66
….Punts…………2-54……….0-0
….Intercepts…….0-0………..0-0
….Fumbles………0-0……….0-0
Total Yardage…..612……….501
Fumbles-Lost……2-2………..1-1
Punts- Yards…….4-143…….4-153
Punt Average……..35.8………38.3
Penalties-Yards…..2-20……….5-35
3rd Downs…………6-26……….5-14
4th Downs…………2-3…………0-1

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
RUSHNG: NC — Isaiah Robinson 21-130; Kiante Stoker 11-47; Shadeed Ahmed 1-12; Parker McNeil 9-(-29). TVCC — Nate Davis 5-61.
PASSING: NC — Parker McNeil 24-37-234-2-0; Austin Brougham 1-1-13-0-0. TVCC — Jeremy Hunt 27-40-267-2-0.
RECEIVING: NC — Shadeed Ahmed 9-70; Troy Edwards 5-59; Quentin Lee 4-63-1; Isaiah Robinson 3-9-0; Torin Hamilton 1-13; Alex Washington 1-13; Devin Morrison 1-9-1; Keaton Dudik 1-11. TVCC — Keonta Fiakpui 4-49; Kishaun Fisher 5-47.
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