1999 Playoffs: PLU rolls in Salem

Tim Lax
Despite giving up 70 pounds, PLU senior linebacker Tim Lax brought down Rowan tight end David Sadowski en route to nine total tackles and three for loss.
Photo by Pat Coleman, D3football.com

The Lutes traveled halfway around the world to get there and rolled up 42 points as they upended Rowan 42-13 in Stagg Bowl XXVII. We also take a look at the feel-good Lutes and the kids who buy into head coach Frosty Westering's system.

Take a look back at preview information and see which of our experts picked Pacific Lutheran to win.

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Playoff roundup

Quarterfinals
West seventh-seeded Pacific Lutheran rallied with 13 unanswered second-half points to defeat St. John's 19-9 and earn a trip to San Antonio and become the first-ever seven seed to reach the national semifinals. OK, it's the first year of seven-team brackets, but that's still impressive. Hardin-Simmons drove from their 35-yard line to the Trinity 15 with five seconds left but was unable to get the ball in the end zone and falls to the top-seeded Tigers 40-33. The Cowboys again suffered from turnovers, coughing up the ball eight times. Ohio Northern's Cinderella season came to a shocking conclusion, as Mount Union pulled off another second-half rout in winning 56-31. The Polar Bears had led 16-14 at the half before the machine scored four third-quarter touchdowns. And Rowan put together a Mount Union-like burst of its own with 21 fourth-quarter points to put Montclair State away 42-13. All the final scores, plus game stories.

Second-round action
Two No. 1 seeds went one-and-out Saturday afternoon, as Western Connecticut lost to Montclair State 32-24 and Pacific Lutheran blew out Wartburg 49-14. That sets up PLU at St. John's next week in the West final, and Rowan at Montclair State in the East. In the North, Ohio Northern romped past Wittenberg 58-24, setting up a rematch at Mount Union, while it's an all-Texas final in the South, with Hardin-Simmons at Trinity. All the scores, including game stories. Plus, Western Connecticut doesn't file the paperwork to host a third-round game and only avoids an embarrassing road trip to New Jersey by losing.

First round: Wisconsin ousted
For all the talk about Wisconsin power, the Badger State went 0-3 in opening-week playoff action. UW-La Crosse lost 38-17, UW-Stevens Point lost 23-10 and St. Norbert lost 39-32. Washington & Jefferson recorded the first big upset of the postseason as it toppled Lycoming 14-7. Did we say the key was defense? Also advancing: Pacific Lutheran, Hardin-Simmons, Rowan, Montclair State, Ursinus, Central, Wittenberg, Ohio Northern, Augustana, St. John's and Western Maryland.

Stagg Bowl XXVII

at Salem, Va.
Pacific Lutheran 42, Rowan 13

Semifinals
Rowan 24, Mount Union 17 (OT)
Pacific Lutheran 49, Trinity (Texas) 28

North Bracket 1. Mount Union 42
5. Augustana 33
1. Mount Union 56
4. Ohio Northern 31
5. Augustana 39
7. St. Norbert 32
3. Hanover 14
4. Ohio Northern 56
4. Ohio Northern 58
2. Wittenberg 24
2. Wittenberg 42
6. Alma 19
East Bracket 1. Western Connecticut 24
4. Montclair State 32
4. Montclair State 13
5. Rowan 42
4. Montclair State 37
6. Buffalo State 34
3. RPI 10
5. Rowan 29
5. Rowan 55
7. Ursinus 0
2. Bridgewater State 38
7. Ursinus 43
West Bracket 1. Wartburg 14
7. Pacific Lutheran 49
7. Pacific Lutheran 19
2. St. John's 9
6. Willamette 24
7. Pacific Lutheran 28
3. UW-La Crosse 17
4. Central 38
4. Central 9
2. St. John's 10
2. St. John's 23
6. UW-Stevens Point 10
South Bracket 1. Trinity 20
4. Western Maryland 16
1. Trinity 40
3. Hardin-Simmons 33
4. Western Maryland 20
5. Catholic 16
3. Hardin-Simmons 28
7. Washington U. 21
3. Hardin-Simmons 51
6. Washington & Jefferson 3
2. Lycoming 7
6. Washington & Jefferson 14

Selection Sunday analysis

Surprises? Sure, there are some surprises. We were quite surprised to see Western Connecticut gain the top seed in the East, as we had been projecting Lycoming to slide into that region. It appears that Lycoming's nine-game schedule might have hurt them, as Trinity is seeded ahead of them. In fact, it appears that the seeding is almost all by winning percentage. How else can we explain Bridgewater State, the champion of the weakest automatic qualifying conference, getting a No. 2 seed?

Other items of note: Western Maryland and Catholic finally play each other, in their third consecutive season reaching the South Bracket together. The last two years, they've each gone 10-0 through the regular season and lost to Lycoming and Trinity in the first round of the playoffs.

Of the four Pool C teams selected, not one got a home game. One did get a No. 4 seed (Central) but will be playing on the road thanks to the West bracket geography. And that's primarily caused by the selection of two Northwest Conference teams.

NCAA national football committee chair Mike Clary summed that up this way: "We felt all along that Pacific Lutheran was a strong team and Willamette by virtue of a great win against Linfield yesterday worked into the tournament. It was just a good pairing for us there."

Also, Pacific Lutheran's only loss on the season is to Willamette. Willamette is one of two three-loss teams in the field (the other is AQ UW-La Crosse), but two of those losses were to an NAIA and a Division II team.

Sep. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Bridgewater State 34, Fitchburg State 25
Box Score
Sep. 24: All times Eastern
Final
Christopher Newport 17, at TCNJ 0
Final
at Hobart 27, Union 23
Box Score Recap
Final
at Thomas More 20, Carnegie Mellon 16
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Final
at Massachusetts Maritime 32, Worcester State 14
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Final
at Endicott 37, Nichols 0
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Final
MIT 30, at Maine Maritime 13
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Final
at Buffalo State 40, Morrisville State 24
Box Score Recap
Final
at Salve Regina 48, Coast Guard 10
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Final
St. Lawrence 20, at RPI 14
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Final
at Framingham State 23, Western Connecticut 17
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Final
at Montclair State 21, Rowan 14
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Final
at Stevenson 54, FDU-Florham 15
Box Score Recap
Final
at Trinity (Conn.) 38, Bates 7
Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Western New England 59, Curry 28
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Final
at Utica 24, Cortland 13
Box Score Recap Recap
Final
Colby 9, at Williams 7
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Final
at Middlebury 40, Bowdoin 3
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Final
at Amherst 34, Hamilton 0
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Final
Kean 24, at William Paterson 13
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Final
at DePauw 66, Hiram 17
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Final
Franklin and Marshall 45, at Juniata 22
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Final
at Kenyon 31, Allegheny 7
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Final
Salisbury 35, at Southern Virginia 0
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Final
Albright 20, at Delaware Valley 17
Box Score Recap
Final
Lycoming 28, at Misericordia 24
Final
at Plymouth State 30, Mass-Dartmouth 14
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Final
at Husson 35, Alfred State 0
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Final
at Springfield 28, WPI 23
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Final
at Moravian 24, Dickinson 10
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Final
at Denison 45, Wooster 7
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Final
at Wittenberg 24, Wabash 14
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Final
at St. Vincent 57, Grove City 32
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Final
at Susquehanna 55, Gettysburg 40
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Final
at King's 21, Lebanon Valley 17
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Final
at Alfred 20, Ithaca 6
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Final
at Widener 25, Wilkes 23
Final
at McDaniel 30, Ursinus 27
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Final
at Muskingum 28, Marietta 10
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Final
at Minnesota-Morris 28, Iowa Wesleyan 27
Final
at John Carroll 42, Heidelberg 14
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Final
Ohio Northern 16, at Otterbein 10
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Final
Case Western Reserve 35, at Waynesburg 7
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Final
at Franklin 44, Bluffton 38
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Final
Rose-Hulman 23, at Defiance 15
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Final
at Centre 49, Chicago 27
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Final
at Mount St. Joseph 38, Manchester 19
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Final
Hanover 49, at Anderson 25
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Final
at Merchant Marine 55, Rochester 7
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Final
Johns Hopkins 30, at Muhlenberg 24
Box Score Recap
Final
Concordia-Chicago 42, at Maranatha Baptist 10
Box Score Photos
Final
Washington U. 36, at Birmingham-Southern 21
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Final
UW-Platteville 56, at Lakeland 0
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Final
at Northwestern (Minn.) 38, Martin Luther 20
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Final
at Eureka 28, MacMurray 13
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at Westminster (Mo.) 35, Greenville 14
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Final
Dubuque 30, at Luther 17
Box Score Recap
Final
Monmouth 52, at Lake Forest 6
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Final
St. Thomas 33, at St. John's 21
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Final
at Augsburg 49, Carleton 17
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Final
Bethel 44, at St. Olaf 7
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Final
at Hamline 42, Gustavus Adolphus 40
Box Score Recap
Final
at UW-Whitewater 35, Morningside 21
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Final
at Hardin-Simmons 48, Texas Lutheran 38
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Final
at UW-River Falls 42, Southwestern 22
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Final
Simpson 17, at Buena Vista 9
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Final
at St. Scholastica 49, Crown 13
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Final
Cornell 46, at Beloit 41
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Final
at Carthage 27, Augustana 24
Final
Coe 48, at Nebraska Wesleyan 17
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Final
at Wartburg 56, Finlandia 0
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Final
at Wheaton (Ill.) 10, Elmhurst 6
Final
Hendrix 42, at Millsaps 14
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Final
Illinois Wesleyan 45, at North Park 10
Final
at Macalester 34, Grinnell 0
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Final
at Ripon 33, Knox 19
Final
Illinois College 40, at Lawrence 15
Final
UW-Oshkosh 77, at Morthland College (Ill.) 0
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Final
Central 42, at Loras 34
Box Score Recap
Final
at Geneva 35, Thiel 27
Final
UW-Eau Claire 40, at Wisconsin Lutheran 14
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Final
St. John Fisher 42, at Brockport 38
Box Score Recap
Final
UW-Stevens Point 44, at Adrian 19
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Final
UW-La Crosse 41, at Carroll 7
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Final
at Berry 41, Sewanee 3
Box Score Recap Recap
Final
Westminster (Pa.) 38, at Bethany 9
Final
Ohio Wesleyan 29, at Oberlin 16
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Final
at Tufts 17, Wesleyan 14
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Final
Mount Union 49, at Baldwin Wallace 7
Box Score Recap
Final
at Capital 35, Wilmington 21
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Final
at Southwestern Assemblies 23, Austin 17
Cancelled
Langston at McMurry
Video Live Stats
Final
at North Central (Ill.) 42, Millikin 7
Box Score Recap
Final
at Chapman 19, Trinity (Texas) 17
Box Score Recap
Sep. 24: All times Eastern
Final
at Thomas More 20, Carnegie Mellon 16
Box Score Recap
Final
at Hobart 27, Union 23
Box Score Recap
Final
Christopher Newport 17, at TCNJ 0
Final
at Wittenberg 24, Wabash 14
Box Score
Final
Salisbury 35, at Southern Virginia 0
Box Score
Final
Albright 20, at Delaware Valley 17
Box Score Recap
Final
at Utica 24, Cortland 13
Box Score Recap Recap
Final
at Stevenson 54, FDU-Florham 15
Box Score Recap
Final
at Franklin 44, Bluffton 38
Box Score Recap
Final
Johns Hopkins 30, at Muhlenberg 24
Box Score Recap
Final
St. Thomas 33, at St. John's 21
Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at UW-Whitewater 35, Morningside 21
Box Score Recap
Final
at Hardin-Simmons 48, Texas Lutheran 38
Box Score Photos
Final
at Wheaton (Ill.) 10, Elmhurst 6
Final
UW-Platteville 56, at Lakeland 0
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Final
UW-Oshkosh 77, at Morthland College (Ill.) 0
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Final
Central 42, at Loras 34
Box Score Recap
Final
St. John Fisher 42, at Brockport 38
Box Score Recap
Final
Mount Union 49, at Baldwin Wallace 7
Box Score Recap
Final
at North Central (Ill.) 42, Millikin 7
Box Score Recap