Since 2000, the home teams now improve to 35-12 overall in the FCS Quarterfinals. Last year, all four hosts were on the winning end.
Top-ranked Marian picked off four passes and forced six turnovers in taking down St. Francis (Ill.), 49-7. The Knights (12-0), who are in their fifth year of varsity existence, head to their first-ever Semifinal thanks to the legs of Tevin Lake. The running back tallied 176 yards on 18 carries (9.8 ypc) and three scores. St. Francis ends its season by playing in its first FCS since 1987 and with a 10-3 record.
Carroll punched its Semifinal ticket for the 12th time after getting past Azusa Pacific (Calif.), 17-14. The six-time national champions (12-1) used a fourth-quarter score from running back Chance Demarais to improve to 3-0 all-time versus Azusa Pacific in the playoffs. The Cougars (9-3) fall for the first time in four Quarterfinal games.
Georgetown improved to 4-0 at home in the playoffs against Saint Francis (Ind.) with a 26-14 victory. Saint Francis had won the previous three meetings prior to today’s loss. The Tigers improve to 7-2 all-time in the Quarterfinals, while Saint Francis falls to 6-4. The Georgetown (12-0) defense held the Cougars (9-3) to 239 yards of total offense and forced three turnovers (2 fumbles, 1 interception).
Saint Francis head coach Kevin Donley ends the year nearing both the active and all-time coaching wins mark. In 33 seasons, Donley is now 254-116-1 and needs one more victory to tie the active wins leader, Hank Biesiot of Dickinson State (N.D.). Westminster’s (Pa.) Frosty Westering stands with 256 all-time wins.
St. Xavier used 277 yards of total offense by quarterback Jimmy Coy to defeat the home-standing Pioneers of MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.), 29-14. Coy passed for 229 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for another 48 yards. The Cougars (12-1) move on to their fourth all-time Semifinal and third-straight. MidAmerica Nazarene (10-2) slides to 6-9 all-time in the playoffs.
The 56th Annual Russell Athletic-NAIA Football National Championship is scheduled for Dec. 17 in Rome, Ga. Rome-Floyd County and Shorter (Ga.) University will host the event at Barron Stadium for the fourth-straight year. The event will be televised live on CBS Sports Television with kickoff slated for 4:30 p.m. EST.
2011 FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES QUICK FACTS
• Looking at all-time FCS Semifinal appearances, Carroll is appearing in its 12th all-time, Georgetown (7), Saint Xavier (Ill.) (4) and Marian (Ind.) is playing in its first Semifinal.
• Defending national champion Carroll holds six NAIA National Championships, which ties former NAIA member Westminster (Pa.) for the second-most all-time. The seventh title would tie Texas A&I for the most in FCS history. Carroll is the only team that has won at least three-straight titles, winning four in-a-row from 2002-05.
• Marian and Georgetown will head into the Semifinals with the NAIA’s longest active win streak with 12-straight triumphs.
• There are two repeat Semifinalists that played in the 2010 FCS Semifinals: Carroll and Saint Xavier.
• Two teams remain that have won at least one National Championship: Carroll (6) and Georgetown (3).
• Carroll (12) holds the longest active streak of postseason appearances, followed by Morningside (Iowa) (8) and Mid-America Nazarene (Kan.) (5).
• With the Quarterfinal victory on Saturday, Carroll earned its 38th postseason win and holds the most in NAIA playoff history. In 19 all-time trips, Carroll is 38-13.
• Carroll and Georgetown are the only teams alive with at least 10 wins all-time in the Football Championship Series.
• Two teams finished the regular season with an undefeated record, Georgetown and Marian. That is the fewest since 2002.
• There are three teams from 2010 that are playoff regulars that did not earn a trip this year: Cumberlands (Ky.) (played in last four-straight playoffs), Dickinson State (N.D.) (played in 15 overall playoffs) and Northwestern Oklahoma State (played in 12 overall playoffs).