Louisiana College football team in Division III playoffs for first time

PINEVILLE — For the first time, Louisiana College is in the NCAA Division III football playoffs.

The Wildcats’ first playoff game is on the road against a team they’ve never beaten — American Southwest Conference champion Mary Hardin-Baylor of Belton, Texas. Kickoff is at noon Saturday.

Mary Hardin-Baylor, at 10-0, is undefeated this season, including a 30-3 drubbing of Louisiana College at Wildcat Field.

Louisiana College is 8-2, the best in its modern football era.

The Wildcats led Mary Hardin-Baylor 3-0 until the final second of the first half.

“We said after that game, ‘For 29 minutes and 59 seconds you got after their butts,’” coach Dennis Dunn told them after the wild-card slot was announced Sunday. “This time, let’s play 30 more minutes plus one second.”

“You have an opportunity to take care of your two losses in the same season,” he added.

Wesley, which beat the Wildcats 25-22, is also in the lower half of the championship bracket.

The football team is the first Louisiana College men’s team to make the Division III playoffs. The softball team has played in eight straight regionals, placing third in the 2008 Division III World Series. The women’s basketball team has made three in a row, winning a first-round game last year.