SAN ANTONIO, TX (FOX 44) — The rankings heading into Saturday afternoon might’ve added a little more incentive for the Crusaders as UMHB built a lead early in the third quarter and survived Trinity’s late comeback bid to ‘upset’ the Tigers, 24-17.

This has become familiar territory for UMHB after the Crusaders knocked Trinity out of the NCAA DIII playoffs last year on their way to a Division Three NCAA National Championship. Early on, it looked like it might be the same story.

Defense took center stage in the first half with neither team being able to string anything together in the windy conditions. UMHB found the end zone first with 3:19 left in the first quarter with Kyle King connecting with K.J. Miller across the middle for a 20-yard score.

UMHB took a 10-0 lead into the half and extended that lead to 17-0 with a 60-yard touchdown pass from King to Jamaal Hamilton to open the third quarter.

Each team traded touchdowns after that until Trinity went on the offensive, pulling within one score off a 13-yard pass from Tucker Horn to Matthew Kovacevich at the beginning of the fourth quarter.

In the end, it was the UMHB defense that played hero in San Antonio, recording two sacks including Dorian Pittman’s sack with 12 seconds left to seal the game.

No. 3 UMHB draws another home game against Bethel University in the NCAA DIII Quarterfinals on Saturday, December 3rd at 12 p.m.