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Delaware beats Georgia Southern to reach FCS title game

Dec 18, 2010 - 11:30 PM Newark, DE (Sports Network) - Pat Devlin threw touchdown passes to Phillip Thaxton and Mark Schenauer, leading Delaware to a 27-10 victory over Georgia Southern in the FCS semifinals.

Devlin ended with 137 yards on 14-of-20 throws, while Andrew Pierce carried 26 times for 186 yards for Delaware (12-2), which advanced to face Eastern Washington in the title game on January 7 in Frisco, Texas.

The Blue Hens' last title came in 2003, and they were runner-up in 2007.

Jerick McKinnon rushed for 101 yards on 12 touches for the Eagles (10-5), who saw a six-game win streak come to an abrupt end thanks to five turnovers. Jaybo Shaw threw for 53 yards with an interception on 4-of-12 throws and had just 10 rushing yards in a triple-option attack that was held in check.

Georgia Southern was on the cusp of scoring on its first possession, but Shaw lost the first of his three fumbles at the Blue Hens' two-yard line.

After trading punts, Delaware embarked on a time-consuming 85-yard drive that spanned the first and second quarter. On the 16th play of the march, Devlin found Schenauer in the back of the end zone for a six-yard TD.

Mike Perry made it 10-0 heading into the break with a late 21-yard field goal.

Adrian Mora countered with a 40-yarder three minutes into the second half, but Shaw lost another fumble in enemy territory on Georgia Southern's next touch.

The Blue Hens converted the turnover into a Devlin-to-Thaxton hookup of 24 yards with 1:16 remaining in the third.

Midway through the fourth, Robert Brown took an option pitch from the six and went in for the score on 4th-and-goal, cutting the deficit to 17-10.

A 30-yard kickoff return by Jake Giusti gave Delaware a short field, and David Hayes' seven-yard jaunt made it a two-possession game with 6:05 to play.

Chris Morales interrupted a Shaw pitch on the second play of the ensuing series, and the turnover resulted in Perry's game-sealing 20-yard kick.