Georgetown, Ky., 28, Pac. Lutheran 20
GEORGETOWN, Ky. (AP) _ Dane Damron, playing with a broken passing hand, threw for 265 yards and three touchdowns as Georgetown, Ky., beat Pacific Lutheran 28-20 Saturday to win the NAIA Division II championship.
Georgetown (13-1), which won its first national title, took a 6-0 lead in the first quarter when Damron scored on a 3-yard run. Damron, a sophomore who injured his right hand in Georgetown’s semifinal victory over Peru State, threw touchdown passes of 70, 15 and 12 yards for the Tigers.
″With the broken hand, I couldn’t grip the ball and couldn’t throw deep,″ Damron said. ″In the first quarter I came out and it felt fine, but the cold got to it, and the numbing stuff we put on it. In the third and fourth quarters I had no feeling at all. It really made it tough.″
Georgetown coach Kevin Donley said he never considered benching Damron.
″When he’s in the game, everyone else rises to a higher level and I knew the rest of the team could carry him if he got down,″ Donley said.
Pacific Lutheran (11-2) scored on touchdown passes of 23, 34 and 64 yards by sophomore quarterback Marc Weekly, who completed 17 of 38 passes.
The Tigers struck again in the first quarter when Damron threw a short pass to running back Ron Railey, who raced 70 yards for a touchdown. Damron then connected with Bobby Williams for the two-point conversion to give Georgetown a 14-0 lead.
Pacific Lutheran pulled to 14-7 when Weekly threw a 23-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Engman in the second quarter.
Georgetown responded with Damron’s 15-yard TD pass to Mike Means, which gave the Tigers a 21-7 halftime lead. Damron connected with Means again for a 12-yard scoring pass in the fourth quarter for a 28-14 lead.
The Lutes had pulled to 21-14 when Chad Barnett caught a 34-yard touchdown pass from Weekly in the third quarter. Pacific Lutheran’s final score came on Weekly’s 64-yard TD pass to Aaron Tang in the fourth quarter.
Means led Georgetown’s rushing attack with 82 yards on 21 carries. Tom Barber gained 94 yards on 11 carries for Pacific Lutheran.