HELENA (AP) – Marcus Miller returned a kickoff 55 yards for a touchdown Saturday to spark Carroll College’s 27-16 victory over Morningside of Iowa in the quarterfinals of the NAIA playoffs.
Second-ranked Carroll (13-0) advances to next weekend’s semifinals. The Saints will learn their opponent on Sunday.
Gabe Le rushed for 131 yards and a touchdown while John Barnett completed 19 of 30 passes for 211 yards and a touchdown and ran for another score. He was intercepted once.
Carroll scored first on a 26-yard pass from Barnett to Travis Browne midway through the second quarter. Two possessions later, Le scampered 45 yards down the left sideline to give Carroll the ball at the Morningside 1. Barnett scored on the 1-yard run to make it 14-0 with 4:07 left in the half.
Morningside drove late in the half, but had to settle for a 31-yard field goal by C.J. Gradoville.
Le scored on a 2-yard run on Carroll’s first posession of the second half, putting the Saints up 21-3.
Morningside answered with the next two touchdowns, a 7-yard pass from Ian Gilworth to Antuan Bloom in the third quarter, and another on a 1-yard play action pass to Chris Becker.
The Mustangs (9-3), trailing 21-16, faked an onside kick and instead kicked the ball downfield. Miller picked it up and returned it 55 yards for the touchdown.
With 3:11 remaining, the Mustangs tried to go to the air, but Gilworth was sacked by Nick Gilchrist and then intercepted by Owen Koeppen, who also had 16 total tackles.
Gilworth completed 34 of 54 passes for 353 yards.
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