ROME, Ga. — The Lindenwood football team sought its first NAIN national title in school history on Saturday afternoon, but was narrowly denied by the defending NAIA national champions.
Ryan Lowmiller rushed for 115 yards on 27 carries, including a short game-tying run in the third quarter, leading Sioux Falls to a 25-22 victory and its third crown in four years.
Braden Wieking kicked three field goals for Sioux Falls (15-0), and his 41-yarder with 9:50 remaining stood as the difference in the outcome.
A 45-yard scoring run by Denodus O’Bryant and 2-point conversion keeper from quarterback Philip Staback gave Lindenwood a 21-14 advantage after Adam Lopez returned the second-half kickoff 90 yards for the Cougars.
Staback threw touchdown passes of 19 and 9 yards to Matt Bramow during the second quarter, and Lindenwood carried a 14-8 lead into halftime.
Freshman linebacker and Farmington graduate Parks Peterson recorded eight tackles and one sack for the Lions (13-1) before suffering a leg injury in the closing minutes. Dan Carlisle notched an interception and forced fumble, as Lindenwood stopped the Cougars four times inside the red zone.