, Corbin, KY

Local Sports

December 20, 2013

The Big One

Patriots set to play for NAIA national championship

CORBIN — By Chris Parsons / Sports Editor

WILLIAMSBURG — The University of the Cumberlands football team is on the brink of making history after completing the 2013 football season with a perfect 13-0 regular season record and a No. 1 overall ranking.

John Bland’s squad will now turn its attention to Grand View University, which won its semifinal matchup against Morningside, 35-0. The two teams will square off in the NAIA National Championship game Saturday at Barron Stadium in Rome, Georgia at 4:30 p.m.

In case you’ve slept through the season, the Patriots’ top billing comes with good reason, considering the kind of numbers the team put up this season. Overall, Cumberlands is averaging 45 points and 478 yards of offense per game, 359 of which come via the ground game.

If the offensive numbers don’t impress you, the Patriots have only given up 19.6 ppg, good enough for an average win margin of 26 points.

Ironically for Cumberlands, the toughest test of the season was the most recent, when the team needed overtime to get past Carroll College in the national semifinal game.

Even though they gave up 493 yards of total offense in the 34-27 win, the bend-don’t-break effort of the Patriots came up huge. Cumberlands held the Saints to 0-for-12 on third down conversions. The defense also came up with key defensive sacks when they needed them, led by Weston Hazelhurst with 17 total tackles with the key sack that ended the game to seal the victory.

Offensively, the Patriots were led by freshman quarterback Adam Craig, who had 27 carries for 165 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the win over Carroll College.

During the win Craig also became the first player in school history to run for 1,000 yards and pass for 1,000 yards in the same season. He’s now has rushed for 1,157 yards and 24 touchdowns, while passing for 1,305 yards and 13 touchdowns.

After the win, Bland talked about how fond he is of this year’s team and the opportunity to make history as the postseason continues.

“I just love this team. They are special guys and I look forward to coaching them every day,” Patriots coach John Bland said. “This is a huge win for our program and a program defining moment. Now, we just have one more game to go to reach our ultimate goal of winning a national championship.”

Senior linebacker and Mid-States Football Association Midwest Defensive Player of the Year Jason Gladfelder is the cornerstone of the Vikings’ defense. He leads the squad with 76 tackles (61 solo), 25.5 tackles-for-loss and 15 sacks, while ranking second on the team in interceptions with three.

Sophomore quarterback Derek Fulton is in his second full season as the starter for Grand View and has been the leader of the Vikings’ offense.

He enters Saturday ranked seventh in the NAIA in total offense with 3,784 yards and passing yards, with 3,151. Fulton has completed 231-of-360 pass attempts, including 30 touchdowns. He has thrown for more than 275 yards on six occasions this season, including a season-high 312-yard effort against Morningside in the semifinals on Dec. 7. He also leads the team in rushing with 633 yards on 153 carries. As a team, Grand View averages 37.5 points and 458.5 total yards per game, which puts it in the top 10 in the NAIA.

Saturday’s game is being broadcast on ESPN3, which is ESPN’s web channel. You must be a subscriber to a participating cable provider to have access to the game.


Text Only
Local Sports
  • LIKE IT OR NOT: A few tips for fantasy draft day

    As high school, college and pro football season approaches, so too does Fantasy Football draft day.

    August 1, 2014

  • Solid Finish

    The Tri-County Sports Authority’s Dirty Dawgs, a 16-under travel baseball team, placed second in the high school division of the Stars and Stripes July Bash, which was held in Knoxville, Tennessee last weekend.

    August 1, 2014

  • Encore Effort

    When it comes to having success, no team in the Tri-County has had more during the past 10 years than the South Laurel Lady Cardinals soccer program.

    August 1, 2014

  • 0731 WHIT BOYS 2 for web.jpg Second Time Around

    When all is said and done after the 2014 high school soccer season, a lot of teams will measure their success by wins and losses.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • THE WAY IT IS: The times, they are a changing

    The times, they are a changing — especially in the Tri-County high school sports scene.

    July 31, 2014

  • 0730 TCSA FBALL for web.jpg Numbers Game

    The Tri-County Sports Authority youth football league, which usually fields in the neighborhood of 200 players, is about to get a little more crowded this season.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • THE WAY IT IS: Football is in the air in the Tri-County

    These cool summer days are reminding me of the cool football Friday nights of September and October, and with that said, these cooler temperatures have me in the mood of writing about things to come for our local football teams in the Tri-County.

    July 30, 2014

  • 0729 KNOX FBALL FOR WEB.tif Must-See Football

    It’s never too early to talk about what games will be the big ones for the Tri-County high school football fans to watch this upcoming season. I’ve tried to narrow my list down to 10 games, but honestly, it really wasn’t easy to do — but I did manage to do it.
    Let’s just say things should be very entertaining, and interesting, for you the fan this season.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0326 whs tennis.jpg Smashing Win

    March 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Whitley County knocks off B'ville, 7-0

    March 28, 2014

Front page
Featured Ads
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
SEC Times-Tribune