Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY


December 22, 2013

Grand View downs Cumberlands for NAIA title


ROME, Ga. —

Craig capped a 10-play, 63-yard drive from a yard out with 7:28 remaining, but Cumberlands' try for the two-point conversion failed. Grand View then went 56 yards in five plays for the clinching touchdown. Fulton hit Roland with a 43-yard pass and then took it over himself from a yard out with 4:53 left.

"We're extremely disappointed, but the players fought hard and I'm proud of the season we had," Cumberlands coach John Bland said.

Grand View scored the first three times it had the ball, going 80, 75 and 61 yards to take a 21-3 lead early in the second quarter on Fulton's third touchdown pass. Cumberlands, though, stopped the Vikings on downs inside the 1 to close the half down 21-17.

Jordan, who had 122 yards on 14 first-half carries, broke off a 45-yard touchdown run for Cumberlands, and Craig scored from a yard out to close the gap. Al Merrick started the Patriots' scoring with a 33-yard field goal.

Fulton hit Keonte White with a 59-yard TD strike to start the scoring, then teamed with Taylor Goebel for a 7-yarder and Davion Hurst on a 2-yarder. Craig accounted for 229 total yards in the first half, completing 13 of 27 passes and rushing for 55 yards.

Senior linebacker West Hazelhurst was in on a game-best 17 tackles for Cumberlands, but the Patriots gave up 429 yards.

"Getting here was our goal," Hazelhurst said. "It didn't end the way we wanted, but it's been a great ride."

The game, played before a near-capacity crowd of 5,295, was the sixth and final NAIA championship in Rome. The event is moving to Daytona Beach, Fla., for the next three years.

Grand View rolled to a 35-0 semifinal victory over 2012 runner-up Morningside (Iowa), ranked No. 5, while Cumberlands had to go to overtime before securing a 34-27 victory over No. 3-ranked Carroll (Mont.), which has won six NAIA titles.

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