East Mississippi wins NJCAA Football National Championship

The title is the second straight for the Lions while the program’s five championships have all come since 2011.

Posted: Nov 30, 2018 12:28 AM
Updated: Nov 30, 2018 12:29 AM

PITTSBURG, Kan. (WTVA/NJCAA) – The 2018 NJCAA eTeamSponsor Football National Championship game came down to a defensive struggle, but it was No. 1 East Mississippi who prevailed with a 10-9 victory over No. 2 Garden City on Thursday night at Carnie Smith Stadium on the campus of Pittsburg State University.

The title is the fifth in program history for the Lions.

In the first-ever NJCAA national championship event on live national television, East Mississippi used a second quarter fumble recovery returned for a touchdown by Everitt Cunningham to pull away from Garden City. The lone touchdown for the Lions made the difference as the East Mississippi defense stopped a fourth quarter two-point conversion attempt by the Broncbusters to seal the victory.

Cunningham’s performance on the defensive front led to top honors as the sophomore was tabbed the eTeamSponsor Most Valuable Player. Along with Cunningham’s fumble recovery for a touchdown, the defensive lineman tallied eight tackles, one tackle for a loss, and a second fumble recovery.

East Mississippi head coach Buddy Stephens collected his fifth national championship as the Lions finished a perfect 12-0 on the year. Stephens’ overall record now sits at 110-13 with a winning percentage of .894, the best mark in NJCAA football history.

The title is the second straight for the Lions while the program’s five championships have all come since 2011.
Four of the Lions’ five titles have come with a perfect 12-0 record.
Garden City’s season-long effort of dominating the run game continued as the Broncbusters tallied 255 yards on the ground as Charles West ran for a game-high 114 and Dedrick Mills added 79 on 28 attempts.
Mills provided Garden City’s only touchdown, a one-yard run with 7:49 to play in the fourth quarter.
Josh Smith provided East Mississippi’s only other points with a first quarter field goal from 36 yards.
Aside from Mills’ touchdown run, Garden City’s scoring effort came from Ben Raybon with a 24-yard field goal in the third quarter.
Defensive teammates Untareo Johnson and JaQuez Akins teamed up for the crucial two-point conversion stop late in the fourth quarter that all be clinched the victory for the Lions.
Messiah deWeaver completed 17-29 passes for East Mississippi.
Eriq Kitchen led the champions with a game-high 13 tackles, including 2.5 stops for a loss.
Deric Rucker led the defensive unit for Garden City with 10 total tackles and a forced fumble on the night.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 320174

Reported Deaths: 7390
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto22294271
Hinds20755424
Harrison18450317
Rankin13923282
Jackson13733249
Madison10273225
Lee10063176
Jones8473167
Forrest7837153
Lauderdale7263242
Lowndes6523150
Lamar636288
Lafayette6314121
Washington5427138
Bolivar4841133
Panola4671110
Oktibbeha466398
Pearl River4606148
Marshall4574105
Warren4440121
Pontotoc425973
Monroe4162136
Union415877
Neshoba4065180
Lincoln4009113
Hancock387687
Leflore3516125
Tate342586
Sunflower339491
Pike3373111
Alcorn327474
Scott320374
Yazoo314571
Adams308486
Itawamba305178
Copiah299966
Coahoma299084
Simpson298689
Tippah292268
Prentiss284261
Leake272374
Marion271280
Covington267283
Wayne264842
Grenada264087
George252451
Newton249064
Tishomingo232369
Winston230282
Jasper222148
Attala215173
Chickasaw210659
Holmes190574
Stone188733
Clay187954
Tallahatchie180041
Clarke178980
Calhoun174232
Yalobusha167940
Smith164134
Walthall135447
Greene131834
Lawrence131224
Montgomery128643
Noxubee128034
Perry127538
Amite126342
Carroll122330
Webster115032
Jefferson Davis108334
Tunica108127
Claiborne103130
Benton102325
Humphreys97533
Kemper96729
Franklin85023
Quitman82316
Choctaw79118
Wilkinson69632
Jefferson66328
Sharkey50917
Issaquena1696
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 549013

Reported Deaths: 11311
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson810461571
Mobile42145831
Madison35718525
Tuscaloosa26179458
Shelby25626254
Montgomery25089614
Baldwin21901314
Lee16287176
Calhoun14724327
Morgan14639285
Etowah14183364
Marshall12454230
Houston10791287
Elmore10301214
Limestone10188157
St. Clair10161251
Cullman9958201
Lauderdale9612250
DeKalb8977190
Talladega8462184
Walker7341280
Autauga7242113
Jackson6953113
Blount6950139
Colbert6415140
Coffee5638127
Dale4930116
Russell454941
Chilton4478116
Franklin431782
Covington4279122
Tallapoosa4144155
Escambia401880
Chambers3728124
Dallas3610158
Clarke353161
Marion3245107
Pike314578
Lawrence3134100
Winston283572
Bibb268564
Geneva258481
Marengo250665
Pickens237062
Barbour234559
Hale227178
Butler224671
Fayette218962
Henry194443
Randolph187644
Cherokee187345
Monroe180641
Washington170739
Macon163051
Clay160159
Crenshaw156357
Cleburne153644
Lamar146937
Lowndes142254
Wilcox126930
Bullock124542
Conecuh113630
Coosa111629
Perry108626
Sumter105832
Greene93634
Choctaw62125
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High pressure still tries to hang on to our area on Thursday, however a weak warm front will change the dominance of high pressure. This weak cold front will give us a chance for some isolated showers and thunderstorms at times.
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