After losing in the last three Division III Championship Games, Mount Union finally secured a title by defeating St. Thomas (Mn) by a score of 28-10.
Defense was the story in the Stagg Bowl as St. Thomas simply could not get anything going.
Quarterback Matt O'Connell was only able to complete 15 of his 36 passes for a total of 120 passing yards.
The Tommies were not able to fair too much better on the ground, as they were held to 72 yards on 36 carries for an average of two yards per attempt.
In addition, the special teams had a game-changing moment in the first quarter. With only a 7-0 lead, Mount Union player Charles Dieuseul blocked a punt and recovered it for a touchdown.
Considering the game was only 14-7 at halftime, things could have been much different.
However, the Purple Raiders took care of business in the second half. With only a narrow 21-10 lead in the fourth quarter, running back Jake Simon scored his second touchdown of the game to all but end it.
Simon ended up with 88 yards on the ground to go with his two scores.
The team was also able to keep the lead thanks to the solid quarterback play of Kevin Burke. He finished the contest with 221 passing yards while completing 20 of his 28 passes.
With the win, Mount Union continued its reputation as one of the top teams in Division III football.
The Purple Raiders won their fourth national championship since 2005 and did it this year in dominant fashion.
Not only did the team finish with a perfect 15-0 record, but no opponent lost by fewer than two touchdowns until the semifinals. The Tommies were also the first team to hold Mount Union under 30 points all year.
St. Thomas has a lot of youth on its team and could be right back in this position next season as a contender. However, the day and the season belonged to Mount Union.
The school's official Twitter account pointed out an impressive stat to illustrate the dominance of the season:
New NCAA D-III scoring record for a season—785 points.—Univ. of Mount Union (@mountunion) December 15, 2012
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Mike Brown has an interesting idea to solve this problem:
Mount Union needs to move to 1AA football or something. Tired of seeing them not get challenged lol—Mike Brown (@Im_MikeB) December 15, 2012
Still, one St. Thomas fan takes pride in simply reaching this point:
Congrats to the St.Thomas Tommies!!! Runner ups for Division III; great year!—Dan(@GopherRube21) December 15, 2012
Both teams should be proud of a great season, but a special congratulations goes out to Mount Union for an impressive victory in the league's final game.