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Quarterback Jimmy Fluery connected with Jeff Shelton on an 84-yard touchdown pass with less than two minutes to play Saturday to lift visiting Rota into the Division III playoffs with a 17-6 victory over AFNORTH.

The result created a three-way tie in III-North between Rota, Baumholder and AFNORTH.

Baumholder (5-1) beat Rota (5-1) 28-6 in their season-opener but later lost to AFNORTH (5-1) by six points. All three teams finished 2-1 in the conference.

Based on the score-differential tiebreaker, Rota’s margin of victory gave Baumholder the league title, earned the Admirals the other III-North playoff berth, and eliminated AFNORTH.

Rota led 10-0 at halftime on R.J. Curley’s 2-yard TD run in the first quarter and a 27-yard field goal by Kieta Silk in the second quarter set up by Tyrell Broddie’s fumble recovery on the AFNORTH 30.

Brock Blankenship, who rushed 16 times for 121 yards, scored on a 23-yard fourth-quarter run to cut the Lions’ deficit to 10-6. Had the game ended there, AFNORTH would have made the playoffs, but Fluery, whose 68-yard pass to Shelton set up Rota’s first TD, changed all that with his touchdown pass.

AFNORTH took the ensuing kickoff and drove downfield, but the Admirals intercepted a pass on their 10 and ran out the clock.

“Rota came to AFNORTH determined to make it to the playoffs, and secured (the) game with an opportunistic defense…” AFNORTH coach Greg Blankenship wrote in an e-mail to Stars and Stripes. “AFNORTH was stripped of the ball three times inside the Admirals’ 25 and (Rota) picked off two passes inside their own 20.”

Rota, held to fewer than 100 yards rushing but 11-for-17 for 215 yards passing, will play III-South champion Hohenfels in the semifinals on Saturday. Vicenza will be at Baumholder in the other semifinal game.

In other Division III and IV games:

Hohenfels 48, Würzburg 8: At Würzburg, Dameon Odum ran for four touchdowns and returned a pass interception for a TD on Friday night as the Bucs claimed the Division III-North crown.

Quarterback Michael Tillberg threw TD passes of 40 and 35 yards to Colby Baskins and ran for a score for Hohenfels (4-2 overall, 3-0 in III-South).

James Robinson, who rushed 15 times for 74 yards, returned a kickoff 85 yards for the only score for Würzburg (0-6, 0-3).

Baumholder 46, Sigonella 6: At Sigonella, Italy, Lacross Gray hit Fred Styles with 30- and 60-yard TD passes as the Bucs took a 23-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back.

Gray and Styles connected again in the second quarter on a 20-yard TD pass set up by a Styles interception and a 44-yard run by Artell Davis, who later returned an interception for a TD.

T.J. Gray ran for two touchdowns for Baumholder (5-1, 2-1).

Sigonella (0-6, 0-3) cut its deficit to 30-6 on a third-quarter TD pass from Ricky Schroff to James Campbell.

Vicenza 14, Bamberg 0: At Vicenza, Italy, the Cougars (4-2, 2-1 in III-South) reached the playoffs for the first time since 1999 behind a TD run by Nick Williams and an 87-yard TD pass from Mickey Stoner to Xavier Taylor.

Stoner was 4-for-12 passing for 101 yards and the TD, and Williams ran eight times for 82 yards.

James Erickson collected three sacks, Williams two and Shakael Sheets intercepted a pass to seal the shutout for Vicenza.

Bamberg (3-3, 1-2) got 75 all-purpose yards from Kevin Brown.

Menwith Hill 53, Hanau 36: At Menwith Hill, England, LeShawn Adams ran for three TDs and Eddie Barrera ran for two scores as the Mustangs avenged a 32-12 nonconference loss at Hanau and claimed the D-IV league crown of nine-man football.

Adams’ runs, all in the first half, put the Mustangs (3-3, 3-0) up 22-20 at halftime, and they put the game away with 31 unanswered points in the second half. In addition to Barrera’s TDs, Scott Setzer and Chris Cruickshank rushed for TDs, and Chase Rexroat returned a fumble 32 yards for a score.

Hanau’s Spencer Miller caught a 22-yard TD pass from David Butler as the clock wound down in the first half. In the final quarter, Miller returned a fumble 33 yards for a TD and ran 15 yards for his third TD of the game for Hanau (5-1, 2-1).

After a week off, the teams will play for the European D-IV title Nov. 3 at Baumholder.

Brussels 46, Alconbury 33: At Brussels, Ethan Hennes ran for 142 yards and three TDs, and Andrew Clayburn rushed for 155 yards and two scores as the Brigands claimed their first victory of the season in a D-IV matchup of previously winless teams.

Stephen Herway added a TD run for Brussels (1-5, 1-2), and Tim Sughrue completed a halfback-option pass to Mark Proietto for the Brigands’ other TD.

Jimmy Luong went 10-for-22 for 224 yards and four TDs for Alconbury (0-6, 0-3). He also returned an interception for a TD.

Arous Brown pulled in six of Luong’s passes for 148 receiving yards and two TDs.

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