Sunday, November 12, 2017

Wingate Punches Ticket to NCAA Playoffs

Indianapolis  The NCAA Division II Football Committee announced today the field of 28 teams for the 2017 NCAA Division II Football Championship. South Atlantic Conference champion Wingate University (9-1 overall) qualifies for the NCAA post-season for the second time in school history. The Bulldogs will host the University of West Florida (7-3 overall) Saturday, Nov. 18 at 1 p.m. The contest will be played at Irwin Belk Stadium and John R. Martin Field on the Wingate campus.

"We are very excited to be going back to the NCAA playoffs," Wingate head football coach Joe Reich says. "This is a great opportunity for our program. I want our guys to enjoy the moment and the experience."

Twelve first-round games will be conducted on the campus of one of the competing institutions. In addition, one team per super regional has earned a first-round bye. The first-round winners will all advance to the second round with games on the campus of one of the competing institutions. Second-round winners will meet in the quarterfinals at various campus sites. Quarterfinal winners will advance to play in the semifinals on the campus of one of the competing institutions. Seven teams selected per super regional make up the field of 28 teams.

Tickets for the Wingate versus West Florida game will go on sale Monday, Nov. 13 at 11 a.m. Ticket prices will be announced on Monday at 11 a.m. Both general admission and reserved seating will be available for purchase at this link.

The first-round dates, sites, and pairings are:

November 18 at Shepherdstown, West Virginia
Findlay (9-2) at Shepherd (10-0)

November 18 at Worcester, Massachusetts
California (Pennsylvania) (9-2) at Assumption (9-1)

November 18 at Shippensburg, Pennsylvania
West Chester (8-3) at Shippensburg (10-1)

November 18 at Petersburg, Virginia
West Georgia (8-3) at Virginia State (9-0)

November 18 at Wingate, North Carolina
West Florida (7-3) at Wingate (9-1)

November 18 at Bowie State
Delta State (8-3) at Bowie State (9-1)

November 18 at Indianapolis, Indiana
Harding (8-3) at UIndy (11-0)

November 18 at Ashland, Ohio
Northwest Missouri State (9-2) at Ashland (10-1)

November 18 at Big Rapids, Michigan
Ouachita Baptist (9-2) at Ferris State (9-1)

November 18 at Mankato, Minnesota
Colorado State-Pueblo (9-2) at Minnesota State Mankato (11-0)

November 18 at Wichita Falls, Texas
Sioux Falls (9-2) at Midwestern State (9-0)

November 18 at Winona, Minnesota
Texas A&M-Commerce (9-1) at Winona State (10-1)

All contests are slated to start at 1 p.m. local time. Other times may be established if approved by the committee. Northwest Missouri State defeated North Alabama 29-3 in the 2016 national championship game. The 2017 championship game will be played December 16, at 6 in Kansas City, Kansas and will be broadcast live on ESPN2 HD/