2015 WFA Playoff Capsule Recaps
[Just as I did two years earlier, I wrote capsule recaps for every game of the 2015 WFA playoffs. As before, most of these recaps first appeared on the website of Militia Cheerleader. Here are the capsule recaps I prepared for the 2015 WFA playoffs.]
Conference Quarterfinal Playoff Recaps
D.C. 48, Miami 12
Washington, DC – Playoff openers are apparently not a problem for the D.C. Divas. The Divas scored three touchdowns on special teams, and four different players each chipped in a rushing touchdown as the Divas triumphed over the Miami Fury, 48-12.
The D.C. Divas made their 12th playoff appearance in team history, a women’s football record they share with the Chicago Force. By defeating the Fury, the Divas improved to 10-2 all-time in playoff openers, with their ten wins another women’s football record.
The Divas (9-0) were aided by two punt return touchdowns from D’Ajah Scott, and the special teams added a third touchdown off of a blocked punt. Running backs Kenyetta Grigsby, Okiima Pickett, and Callie Brownson and quarterback Allyson Hamlin all scored rushing touchdowns in the victory.
The Fury (6-3), along with the Divas, celebrated their 15th season of play this year as two of the three oldest franchises in the WFA. Miami received a strong effort from fullback Brittani Johnson, who scored a rushing touchdown in the first half.
Atlanta 48, Jacksonville 9
Jacksonville, FL – The Atlanta Phoenix capped a remarkable comeback and captured the 2015 Southeast Region crown with a dominating 48-9 road victory over the Jacksonville Dixie Blues.
Following a May 30 loss to the D.C. Divas, the 3-3 Atlanta Phoenix found themselves just outside of the WFA playoff picture. But the Phoenix (6-3) ripped off three straight victories, including a 13-6 win over Jacksonville in their regular season finale that earned them a berth in the Southeast Region championship game.
Atlanta took advantage of that opportunity. Tagged as a six-point underdog, the Phoenix outscored Jacksonville, 36-0, in the second half to break open a close game and claim the Southeast Region title for the second time in three years.
The Dixie Blues (6-3), who enjoyed a decade-long run as a longtime powerhouse franchise in the Southeast, came up one game short of their first regional title since 2012.
Boston 59, West Michigan 12
Boston, MA – The Boston Renegades’ playoff debut picked up right where the Boston Militia left off. Running back Stacey Tiamfook rushed for four touchdowns, quarterback Allison Cahill added four more on the ground and through the air, and the Boston Renegades easily advanced with a 59-12 victory over the West Michigan Mayhem.
The Renegades’ predecessor team, the Boston Militia, won their last four playoff games en route to the 2014 national championship, and the Renegades continued that tradition against West Michigan. Tiamfook scored two of her touchdowns on long runs of 81 and 62 yards, respectively, and three of her scores came in the first half as the Renegades (4-2) built a commanding 42-0 lead at halftime. Cahill threw three touchdown passes – two to Kathryn Tylander and one to Adrienne Smith – and rushed for another in the Boston victory.
Fullback Heather Anderson scored a touchdown for the Mayhem (6-3), who made their tenth playoff appearance in team history.
Chicago 71, Cleveland 14
Chicago, IL – The 2013 national champions are back in force. The Chicago Force had the highest scoring output of the conference semifinal round, recording ten touchdowns and routing the Cleveland Fusion, 71-14.
The Force (8-1) returned three interceptions for touchdowns, two by defensive back Elisha Okrey and one by Kelsey Casey. Not to be outdone, the offense, led by dual-threat quarterback Rachel Gore, was nearly flawless. Gore, the former signal caller for Seattle Majestics, rushed for two touchdowns and tossed three more, one each to three outstanding receivers – Jennifer Grey, Cassey Brick, and Jamie Fornal. Running back Brandy Hatcher also added two rushing touchdowns in the win.
The Fusion (6-3) had a terrific season, putting up strong showings in the regular season against the top teams in the conference. Cleveland was widely expected to be competitive against Chicago and was only an eight-point underdog going into the contest, but they fell victim to a Force squad determined to let the sport know that they are serious contenders for their third conference title in four years.
Dallas 54, St. Louis 3
Dallas, TX – The Dallas Elite continue to live up to their namesake, winning their first ever playoff game in rock-solid fashion by downing the St. Louis Slam, 54-3.
The Elite (9-0) are made up of several members from the defunct four-time national champion Dallas Diamonds. All season long, Dallas has been playing like a team with championship pedigree, and Saturday was no exception. The Elite scored seven rushing touchdowns, four of them by Odessa Jenkins, who also serves as the team’s head coach. Brittany Satterwhite contributed two touchdowns as well, one on the ground and one on a 57-yard scoring catch from quarterback Jessica Gerhart.
The Slam (6-3) logged their only points on a 30-yard field goal before halftime. St. Louis, the inaugural 2009 WFA champions, made their eighth playoff appearance in team history.
Kansas City 22, Arlington 12
Arlington, TX – The Kansas City Titans registered the biggest upset of the conference quarterfinals, going on the road to stun the Arlington Impact, 22-12.
The Titans (6-3) were a 13-point underdog entering the contest, but they quickly proved that they were not awed by the playoff atmosphere. The game was tied 6-6 after the first quarter before the Titans scored a touchdown late in the first half for a six-point advantage. Kansas City pulled away in the second half and registered their third playoff victory in team history. All three of their postseason victories are over foes from Texas, having defeated the Houston Power and Austin Outlaws in last year’s playoffs.
The Impact (6-3) had won six of their previous seven games in an impressive debut season in the WFA.
Seattle 34, Tacoma 0
Seattle, WA – The Seattle Majestics have been winning games handily all season long. Saturday’s story remained the same, as Seattle cruised to the 2015 Pacific Northwest championship with a 34-0 shutout victory over the Tacoma Trauma.
The Majestics (9-0) surrendered a total of 30 points in their first eight games, but 18 of those were in their only previous meeting with Tacoma. Seattle – who played their first four seasons in Tacoma from 2002-2005 before relocating 35 miles north to Seattle – compensated for their earlier defensive performance by pitching the only shutout of the conference quarterfinal round. The Majestics are now 9-0 for just the second time since relocating to Seattle in 2006.
The Trauma (7-2) saw their Cinderella season come to an abrupt end. But it was still a memorable year for Tacoma, who compiled a 1-15 record in their first two seasons before completing a stunning turnaround in 2015 and earning their first playoff berth with a 7-1 record in the regular season.
San Diego 27, Central Cal 7
San Diego, CA – The San Diego Surge remained perfect at home, but not before getting the scare of their lives. The reigning American Conference champions needed three fourth-quarter touchdowns to snap a 7-7 tie and finally break away from the Central Cal War Angels by a 27-7 count.
The Surge (9-0) have won three of the last four American Conference championships and had never lost a home game in their five-year history. Despite an upset loss to Central Cal in their regular season finale, San Diego easily clinched the top seed in the Pacific Region and are considered top contenders for their fourth conference title in five years.
But the powerful War Angels (5-3) – the only American Conference team to ever defeat San Diego in a playoff game with a victory in 2013 – nearly ended San Diego’s playoff run as quickly as it began. Central Cal pulled out to a 7-0 lead at halftime, and a third-quarter touchdown by San Diego merely tied the game going into the final period. Yet despite being severely tested, the Surge ultimately showed their championship mettle by notching a trio of scores in the fourth quarter and improving to 12-1 all-time in American Conference playoff games.
Conference Semifinal Playoff Recaps
D.C. 40, Atlanta 6
Washington, DC – The D.C. Divas advanced to their first conference championship game since 2010 and their first as members of the WFA with a 40-6 victory over the Atlanta Phoenix. The Divas (10-0) have reached double-digit victories in a season for the third time in team history.
The Phoenix (6-4) got an early break, recovering the opening kickoff in D.C. territory. But they turned the ball over on downs at the Divas’ 30-yard line, and the Divas wasted little time getting on the scoreboard. Allyson Hamlin found Ashley Whisonant for a 66-yard touchdown pass on the Divas’ second offensive play of the game. Hamlin added a touchdown of her own on a quarterback sneak later in the period, and the Divas led after one quarter, 13-0.
Hamlin threw two more touchdowns in the second quarter. Whisonant caught her second touchdown pass of the game early in the period, and Kentrina Wilson added a 77-yard touchdown reception late in the first half. The Divas’ defense also produced on the scoreboard, as linebacker Alicia Hopkins ran an interception back 50 yards for a score. The Divas led at halftime, 34-0.
Atlanta scored their only touchdown of the game on a 38-yard pass from Tammy Nelson to Ramiah Smith. That score in the third quarter cut the Divas’ advantage to 34-6, but the Divas responded later in the period with a one-yard rushing touchdown by Callie Brownson for the final points of the game.
Chicago 49, Boston 18
Boston, MA – The Chicago Force avenged their only loss of the season by getting the only road victory of the conference semifinal round, traveling to Boston and toppling the Renegades, 49-18. The Force (9-1) now advance to the conference championship game for the fourth consecutive year.
The game could not have started better for the Force, as Jamie Fornal returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown and put Chicago ahead, 7-0, just 18 seconds into the game. Fornal made another key play on Chicago’s next drive, catching a 13-yard pass at the one-yard line on fourth and eight. Rachel Gore carried from there on a one-yard keeper to put Chicago ahead, 13-0.
The Renegades (4-3) got on the scoreboard with a 23-yard field goal by Brooke Goodman and cut the deficit to 13-3 after one quarter. On Chicago’s next possession, Gore scored her second rushing touchdown of the day, a six-yard carry on fourth and one that pushed the lead up to 19-3. But Allison Cahill countered for the Renegades with an eight-yard touchdown pass to Adrienne Smith, pulling the Renegades back within 19-10 midway through the second quarter.
Cassey Brick gave Chicago command of the game with two explosive touchdown runs. Brick took a short screen pass from Gore and ran 61 yards for the end zone, and minutes later, she took another screen pass and zipped 76 yards for another long touchdown. Brick’s two scoring runs put Chicago on top at halftime, 35-10.
Gore added two more rushing touchdowns in the third quarter – giving her four for the game – and the Force had a 49-10 advantage after three periods. Stacey Tiamfook scored on an 11-yard touchdown run with three minutes remaining in the game for Boston, but the Force ran out the clock on an impressive 49-18 victory.
Dallas 70, Kansas City 14
Dallas, TX – The Dallas Elite moved on to the conference championship game in their inaugural season of play with a 70-14 victory over the Kansas City Titans. The Elite (10-0) have won every single game this season by 40 points or more.
The Titans (6-4), however, came to play and competed early. After Tiffany Hill put Dallas on top initially with a 30-yard touchdown run, Kansas City returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown and executed the two-point conversion for an 8-6 lead. The Elite found themselves behind in a game for the first time all season long, and they trailed by two points after the first quarter.
Brittany Satterwhite put the Elite back on top, 12-8, with a 30-yard touchdown run. Kansas City responded, however, and seized the lead right back on a 48-yard touchdown run for a 14-12 advantage. But Dallas would go ahead for good midway through the second quarter on Satterwhite’s second touchdown run of the game, which handed the Elite a 20-14 lead.
From there, it was all Dallas. Odessa Jenkins rushed for a touchdown to give the Elite some breathing room, and Tiffany Hill got her second rushing touchdown of the game just before halftime to put Dallas on top at intermission, 36-14.
The Elite built on their lead in the third quarter with four rushing touchdowns in the frame. Tiffany Hill added two of those to finish the contest with four rushing scores, and the Elite built a 62-14 lead after three quarters. Jenkins added her third touchdown of the game in the final period, as the Elite scored 58 unanswered points to close out 70-14 victory.
San Diego 57, Seattle 27
San Diego, CA – The San Diego Surge advanced to their fourth conference championship game in five years with a hard-fought 57-27 victory over the Seattle Majestics. The Surge (9-1) improved to 13-1 all-time in American Conference playoff games.
The Majestics (9-1) jumped all over San Diego early. Seattle recovered an onside kick on the opening kickoff, and Rachel Woods then found Tessla Rennie near the goal line. Although Rennie fumbled the ball, Julia McComas recovered in the end zone for a Majestics touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
Jackie McCall then picked off a San Diego pass, which set up another Seattle touchdown. Woods found Rennie in the red zone again, and this time she held on for the score and a 13-0 advantage. But San Diego gained some momentum when Jessica Springer took the blocked extra point kick attempt and returned it all the way across the field for a two-point conversion and a 13-2 deficit.
The Surge then went to work on offense behind Alexis Snyder, who rushed for two straight touchdowns to put San Diego in front, 16-13. Natasha Johnson intercepted a Seattle pass with seconds remaining in the first quarter and returned it 16 yards for a touchdown, increasing the Surge advantage to 23-13 after a wild first quarter.
Snyder added her third touchdown run of the game early in the second period, putting San Diego on top, 30-13. But just as it looked like San Diego might be pulling away, Woods found Melissa Castor on a five-yard touchdown strike to close the Majestics within 30-20 at halftime.
The Surge would lean on Deana Guidry in the second half, and she delivered by rushing for two touchdowns. Her first score pushed San Diego’s advantage back out to 37-20, but again, Seattle responded. Woods threw her third touchdown pass of the game, a 40-yard strike to Chris Hernandez, and the Majestics were back within ten points at 37-27 after three quarters.
San Diego finally pulled away in the fourth quarter, however, with three scores in the final frame. Melissa Gallegos threw her only touchdown pass of the night to Knengi Martin for an eight-yard score, and rushing touchdowns by Guidry and Adrianna Bush sealed a 57-27 victory for the Surge.
WFA National Conference Championship Game Preview:
Chicago Force (9-1) @ D.C. Divas (10-0)
Arguably the two most historic franchises in the WFA will meet in the National Conference title game when the Chicago Force travel to take on the D.C. Divas. The Force and Divas both have 108 victories all-time, tied for the most of any WFA team. The Force and Divas are both making their 12th playoff appearance, also tied for the most of any WFA team. Chicago’s seventh appearance in a conference title game will be the most by any WFA franchise, while the Divas will make their sixth appearance in the semifinal round.
The Divas and Force have never met in the postseason. Their only meeting took place last year, when Chicago traveled to D.C. and handed the Divas a 42-27 defeat on April 19, 2014.
The D.C. Divas will make their sixth conference title game appearance but their first since 2010. This will be the first time the Divas have hosted a conference championship game since 2006, the year they won their only national championship.
The Chicago Force will make their fourth straight conference title game appearance. The Force are looking to clinch their third conference championship in four years and return to the WFA national championship game that they won in 2013.
WFA American Conference Championship Game Preview:
San Diego Surge (9-1) @ Dallas Elite (10-0)
The reigning champion San Diego Surge will travel to meet the upstart Dallas Elite for the American Conference championship. Because this is the Elite’s first season, these two teams have technically never met. But San Diego and Dallas are very familiar with each other, as these two cities have a women’s football history that dates back to when the Dallas Diamonds battled the So Cal Scorpions.
This will be the fifth straight season in which the American Conference champion comes from San Diego or Dallas. The Surge defeated the Diamonds en route to conference titles in 2011 and 2012. The only year the Surge have failed to win the conference championship was in 2013, when the Diamonds took the crown.
The Elite are looking to bring a sixth conference championship to the city of Dallas. Their predecessors, the Dallas Diamonds, played in the 2013 WFA national championship game before folding, and after a one-year absence, the Elite have brought women’s football back to prominence in Dallas. The Elite are now one win away from returning a Dallas team to the WFA championship game in their first year of existence.
The San Diego Surge are seeking their fourth American Conference championship in five years. They are undefeated in three previous conference title game appearances, but this will be the first time they have had to play for a conference championship on the road. They look to make their fourth appearance in the WFA national championship game that they won in 2012.
Conference Championship Game Recaps
D.C. 43, Chicago 24
Washington, DC – Kenyetta Grigsby shattered the franchise record with 324 rushing yards, the defense held Chicago’s explosive offense to a season-low scoring output, and the D.C. Divas clinched their third conference title in team history with a 43-24 victory over the Chicago Force.
The Force (9-2) entered the game averaging nearly 60 points per game, and they lived up to that reputation early with a touchdown pass from Rachel Gore to Kim Marks for an early 6-0 Chicago lead. But the Divas (11-0) responded with three straight touchdowns, with two rushing scores from Grigsby sandwiched around a touchdown pass from Allyson Hamlin to Kentrina Wilson.
The Divas led after one quarter, 14-6, and Grigsby’s second score extended the lead to 21-6. But Gore hit wide receiver Jamie Fornal with a 26-yard touchdown pass to pull Chicago within 21-12 at halftime. Grigsby rushed for her third touchdown less than a minute into the second half, and the Divas faked the extra point kick and passed for a two-point conversion and a 29-12 lead.
But Chicago would put together a strong rally. Cassie Brick broke free for a 47-yard touchdown run to cut the margin to 29-18 after three quarters, and early in the final period, Marks caught her second touchdown pass from Gore to pull Chicago within 29-24.
The Force then recovered a fumble at the Divas’ 25-yard line with a chance to take the lead, but they gave the ball right back when Helen Deer recovered a Chicago fumble. A long drive down the field resulted in Grigsby’s fourth rushing touchdown of the contest; she finished the game with 41 carries for 324 yards and four touchdowns. Grigsby’s touchdown with just under ten minutes left in the game pushed the Divas’ lead back out to 36-24.
The Divas defense would not allow Chicago to draw closer, and Cherre Marshall intercepted a Gore pass with under two minutes left and returned it 25 yards to the end zone for the game’s final touchdown. With the victory, the D.C. Divas won their third conference championship and will make their first appearance in the national title game since 2009.
Dallas 56, San Diego 28
Dallas, TX – Odessa Jenkins rushed for four touchdowns in the second half, and the Dallas Elite pulled away in the fourth quarter for a 56-28 victory over the San Diego Surge in the 2015 WFA Western Conference championship game. Dallas scored 34 straight points in the second half to remain undefeated in the first year of their franchise’s history.
The Surge (9-2), seeking their fourth conference title in five years, got off to a fast start on the road. San Diego intercepted a pass by Dallas quarterback Jessica Gerhart on the first play of the game, and the Surge cracked the scoreboard first when Deanna Guidry raced for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead. Dallas took their first lead of the game on a touchdown and two-point conversion late in the first quarter, which gave them an 8-7 after one period. But Kaycee Clark scored a touchdown with 12:50 left in the second quarter to put San Diego back in front, 14-8.
The Elite (11-0) seized momentum with two touchdowns in rapid succession near the end of the first half. Dallas regained the lead on a touchdown and two-point conversion with under three minutes to go in the first half that put them on top, 16-14. When San Diego fumbled the ensuing kickoff, Dallas tacked on another touchdown with under a minute to go before halftime and extended their lead to 22-14.
But the Surge were able to beat the clock at the end of the half, and Guidry raced for a 12-yard touchdown with only three seconds remaining before halftime. San Diego quarterback Melissa Gallegos completed a pass for the two-point conversion, and the game was tied at intermission, 22-22.
The Dallas Elite quickly regained the lead, taking the second half kickoff and driving down the field for a score. Odessa Jenkins – the star running back, head coach, and co-owner of the Dallas Elite – broke into the end zone on a short touchdown run just over five minutes into the third quarter to give Dallas a 28-22 advantage. The Elite had three apparent touchdown plays wiped out by penalties later in the quarter, and Dallas took a slim six-point lead into the final period of play.
With a game-time temperature in the mid-90s, the San Diego Surge wilted in Texas heat in the fourth quarter, while the Elite rang up four unanswered touchdowns. Dallas scored a touchdown with 11:06 remaining in the game to go ahead, 34-22. Minutes later, Jenkins would put the game out of reach with back-to-back touchdowns.
Odessa Jenkins scored on a 16-yard run with 9:04 left to give Dallas a 40-22 lead. The Dallas defense then recovered a Surge fumble, and on the next play, Jenkins bolted for a 36-yard touchdown that put the game out of reach at 48-22 midway through the fourth quarter. San Diego would be victimized by yet another untimely turnover, as the Elite intercepted Gallegos at the Surge 10-yard line. That led to another touchdown for Jenkins, her third straight in the game and a score that put Dallas on top by a 56-22 count.
The San Diego Surge got a late touchdown to make the final score 56-28. The Dallas Elite are headed for the 2015 WFA national title game in their first season of play, looking to bring a national championship back to Dallas for the first time since 2008.
2015 Alliance Bowl Game Recap
Central Cal 28, Atlanta 8
Los Angeles, CA – Running back Destanie Yarbrough has terrorized many opposing defenses over the years, so the fact that she dominated the 2015 Alliance Bowl was not a surprise. What was surprising, however, is that she did it with her arm, not her legs.
Pressed into emergency service at quarterback, Yarbrough threw four touchdown passes to lead the Central Cal War Angels to a 28-8 victory over the Atlanta Phoenix in the second-annual Alliance Bowl. Central Cal did not allow an offensive touchdown to Atlanta and joined the Indy Crash as Alliance Bowl champions.
Central Cal quarterback Chantel Nino Wiggins, who led the WFA in the regular season with 1,852 passing yards and 24 touchdowns, was knocked out of the game with an injury less than two minutes into the contest. Central Cal took the opening kickoff and quickly drove into Atlanta territory. Wiggins dropped back and completed a pass to the Atlanta ten-yard line, but she was hit as she threw and had to leave the game; Wiggins did not return.
Yarbrough finished third in the WFA in the regular season with 906 rushing yards, but she was pressed into service replacing Wiggins under center. Yarbrough finished off the drive Wiggins started by completing a five-yard touchdown pass to Maddison Gagnier for a 6-0 lead after one quarter.
The War Angels (6-3) pinned Atlanta deep in their own territory early in the second quarter with a punt to their five-yard line. The Phoenix (6-5) were then tackled for loss on three straight plays, the third coming when Yarbrough wrestled Atlanta’s Brandi Pringle to the ground in the end zone for a safety. Central Cal took an 8-0 with just over nine minute remaining before halftime.
The Phoenix defense then stood up and made their biggest play of the game. On the ensuing possession, Yarbrough dropped back to pass. The ball was tipped by the Central Cal receiver and fell into the arms to Kristen London, who ran down the sideline for a 57-yard interception return touchdown. Quarterback Tammy Nelson ran for a two-point conversion, and Atlanta had knotted the score at 8-8.
The game would remain tied at halftime, but Lisa King would make her presence felt in the third quarter. On the War Angels’ first offensive possession of the second half, Yarbrough found King for a 43-yard touchdown pass. King then faked the extra point and tossed the ball to Gagnier for a two-point conversion and a 16-8 advantage.
The War Angels got the ball back minutes later, and this time Yarbrough and King connected in even more spectacular fashion. King slipped behind the defense, and Yarbrough hit King with a 77-yard touchdown pass midway through the third quarter. Central Cal led the Phoenix by a 22-8 score after three quarters of play.
The fourth quarter moved quickly, as the Central Cal War Angels were content to run the clock and the Atlanta Phoenix failed to generate much offense all game long. Yarbrough threw her fourth and final touchdown pass of the game, a one-yard toss to LaStar Brown, with 3:13 remaining in the contest to make the final score 28-8.
2015 National Championship Game Recap
D.C. 30, Dallas 26
Los Angeles, CA – The D.C. Divas won their first national championship in nine years, taking an early lead and holding on to defeat the Dallas Elite for the 2015 WFA national championship by a 30-26 margin. The Divas’ nine-year wait between national titles is the longest in the history of the sport, adding a second trophy to the NWFA championship they won in 2006.
The Divas (12-0) took a commanding lead early in the contest. Running back Kenyetta Grigsby scored two touchdowns in the first quarter to give the Divas a 13-0 lead after one. The Elite (11-1) would respond with a 20-yard touchdown run by Tiffany Hill early in the second period that cut the Divas’ lead to 13-6. But the Divas immediately countered with a 45-yard touchdown strike from quarterback Allyson Hamlin to wide receiver Ashley Whisonant that extended the D.C. lead to 20-6. Whisonant, who played on offense, defense, and special teams, was named the MVP of the 2015 national championship game.
Quiana Ford picked off a pass from Dallas quarterback Jessica Gerhart to give the Divas great field position, and Okiima Pickett charged into the end zone for a touchdown to give the Divas their biggest lead of the game, 27-6, with five minutes remaining before halftime.
The Elite seized a little momentum back before the halftime break, as Hill rushed for a four yard touchdown with just over a minute to go in the half to pull Dallas within 27-12 at intermission. Dallas continued to build on that momentum in the third quarter when Brittany Satterwaite hauled in a 16-yard touchdown pass to Gerhart that made the score 27-18.
The Divas drove down the field near the close of the third quarter, and although Dallas’ defense held firm, D.C. kicker Stephanie Nealis booted a 32-yard field goal for the Divas’ only points of the second half. Nealis’ kick put the Divas ahead after three quarters, 30-18.
The Divas defense forced an incomplete by Gerhart in fourth down to preserve the Divas’ 12-point lead midway through the fourth quarter. But with 2:03 remaining in the contest, Gerhart found Odessa Jenkins for a 55-yard touchdown pass that put Dallas right back in the game, trailing by only four points, 30-26.
Dallas’ onside kick attempt went out of bounds, and the Divas gave the ball to Grigsby three times in an attempt to run out the clock. Grigsby picked up nine yards on three carries, bringing up fourth and one near midfield with just six seconds remaining in the game. On fourth down, Hamlin fell forward for a three-yard gain to move the chains and run out the clock on a 30-26 national championship game victory for the Divas.