In only their fourth season, the Iowa Western Reivers raised the NJCAA national championship trophy after defeating Butler 27-7 at the UNI Dome in Cedar Falls, Iowa Sunday evening, capping off a 12-0 season.
An 88-yard interception return by defensive back James Garlock on the final play of the first half put the Reivers up 14-0.
Butler quarterback Billy Cosh suffered a game-ending injury on the return. Tyler Harrison tried to fill in for the Grizzlies, but threw two interceptions and was just 3-for-6 passing for 53 yards.
The Grizzlies were held to just 236 yards of total offense and a season-low 84 yards passing. Linebacker Terrell Porter led the Reivers in tackles with eight including two for a loss. Garlock recorded two of Iowa Western’s four interceptions.
IWCC quarterback Jake Waters completed 32-of-40 passes for 306 yards. Despite not throwing a touchdown pass for the first time all season, Waters put the Reivers up 7-0 late in the second quarter with a 6-yard touchdown run.
Iowa Western went up 21-0 in the third quarter on a one-yard TD carry by Don Jackson. After falling behind 24-0, Butler scored its first points on Harrison’s one-yard touchdown run. Lance Irvin connected on his second field goal with 2:46 remaining to give the Reivers a 27-7 lead.
Butler dropped to 11-1. Derrick Thomas was the lone bright spot, running the ball 21 times for 108 yards.