Lipscomb Blanks CPA For DII-AA Title

Broome’s 137 Rushing Yards, 2 TDs Earn MVP Honors

Thursday, December 2, 2021 - by James Beach

When it comes to assets, there’s not much the Lipscomb Academy football program wants for. Imagine drawing Bill Gates name in the Christmas gift exchange.


Lipscomb Academy’s long and storied playoff resume coming into Thursday’s D-II AA BlueCross Bowl state championship tilt had just about everything: 31 playoff appearances; 63 playoff wins; eight state title bouts; and three gold trophies.


But on a spectacular sun-splashed Thursday inside the confines of Finley Stadium, the Mustangs finally unwrapped the one thing which has eluded the program through the years: a win over fellow powerhouse rival Christ Presbyterian Academy in a playoff bout.


Lipscomb Academy dominated the Lions defensively and tailback Alexander Broome punched in a pair of scores and rushed for 137 yards as the Mustangs pitched a 27-0 shutout on their rivals to avenge a loss in last year’s championship tilt.


“I think we are by far the best defense in the state.

CPA has two of the top offensive players in the state. We beat a really good team. After we lost to Oakland, we told the kids they could get bitter or get better, and since then we have been dominate,” said Lipscomb coach Trent Dilfer, the former Super Bowl winning NFL quarterback in his third season at LA.


No argument there as the Mustangs gave up 10 points or less in 7 of their final 8 outings, including four shutouts, after that 29-21 loss to 6A finalist Oakland.


“Part of the reason I wore sunglasses today because I knew a win would be emotional. It just brings you so much joy to see what these kids have done. You don’t always get rewarded for doing it right, but today was the reward,” added Dilfer.


It was obvious in the game’s closing minutes that the loss to CPA in last year’s finals had left a mark. Lipscomb won the regular season game only to lose on the grander stage.


“Today was a testament to what we did in the offseason and into the weeks leading up to this. They scored 35 points on us last year, and that was what pushed us through the offseason and this season: to get back to today,” said Broome, the Boston College commit who earned MVP honors for his work.


CPA (11-3) was hoping to rekindle last season’s magic as well as whatever mojo they had on their counterparts in white since the two squads moved into the private side of the TSSAA playoffs. CPA beat Lipscomb in the state quarters (2014), the semifinals (2019) and the finals (2020), and there hasn’t been a lot love lost between the two programs.


As the game’s final seconds ticked off the clock a Lipscomb player came running by the student section with a picture from last year’s championship aftermath showing the CPA quarterback giving the same student section the “L” sign. The picture was soon torn into several confetti sized pieces as the celebration commenced.


Lipscomb had hoped to come out strong with the opening drive, and did, marching down the field on the strength of Luther Richesson’s arm, but an interception deep in CPA territory put an end to it. Nonetheless, it was a good sign and proved to be just one of two passes the Cincinnati commit missed on, finishing 17-of-19 for 147 yards.


“We wanted to set the tone with that first drive, but we got it going with the second one. Once we got the score, we knew they weren’t going to score on our defense,” Broome added.


Broome bulled it in on a 7-yard run to cap a 16-play, 72-yard drive to open the second quarter for a 7-0 LA lead. The next four drives between the two squads were all hampered by holding calls on first down plays with neither squad being able to overcome them.


“Penalties killed us in the first half, but we came out of it feeling like we were better up front,” Dilfer admitted.


The Lions appeared to overcome their second holding call when Langston Patterson busted loose for a 55-yard gain, but not only did the Mustangs tighten up to hold on downs, they did so with just enough time for a crucial score before half. Richesson fired a perfect strike to Nathan Spillman for a 61-yard score just six seconds before the break. A miss PAT ledt it at 13-0.


“Yeah, that TD at the half was nice, but honestly, the way we had called the game we expected to have our way in the second half,” Dilfer added.


CPA managed to move the ball on its opening drive in the second half, but a holding call negated a 1st-and-goal and the Lions wound up getting sacked on fourth down by Sam Fisher all the way back to the Lions’ own 41. Broome capped that short drive off with four-yard burst and it was 20-0 heading into the final quarter.


“You can’t make the kind of mistakes we made and expect to win. We just had too many penalties and turnovers. It cost us,” said CPA quarterback Cade Law, who threw one interception and fumbled on a fourth down try.


Maureice Sherrill closed the scoring with 2:25 left in the game with a 12-yard run from his receiver spot. CPA was held to 3 of 9 third down tries and 1 of 5 fourth down conversions. Patterson had 105 rushing yards on 13 totes but CPA was held to just 133 rushing yards after last year’s big rushing output.


“I believe that’s 65-0 in 2021,” Dilfer shouted to his troops as they lined up for a picture with the scoreboard in the background, referencing the regular-season 38-0 win over CPA.


Lipscomb had 341 total yards, including 194 on the ground, but was penalized nine times for 96 yards. 




CHRIST PRESBYTERIAN                0         0       0   0 –      0

LIPSCOMB ACADEMY                    0        13      7    7  –   27


 LA –  Alexander Broome 7 run (Grant Hyatt kick) (11:17, 2nd)

LA  –  Nathan Spillman 61 pass from Luther Richesson (Kick failed) (0:06, 2nd)

LA –  Alexander Broome 4 run (Grant Hyatt kick) (1:50, 3rd)

LA –  Maureice Sherrill 12 run (Jackson Portale kick) (2:25, 4th)



LA                   STATS                        CPA

15                    1st Downs                    11

34-194             Rush                            33-133

147                  Pass                             90

341                  Total                            223

17-19-1           Passes                         6-13-1

9-96                 Penalties                      6-54

2-41.5              Punts                            1-40.0    

0-0                   Fumbles                       1-1


Individual Stats


Rushing: Alexander Broome 20-137, Carlin Walker 7-38, Maureice Sherrill 2-19, Luther Richesson  4-2 (LA);   Langston Patterson 13-105, Cade Law 17-28, Reid Williford 2-(-2)

Passing:  Luther Richesson 17-19-1 147 yards (LA); Cade Law 6-13-1 90 (CPA)

Receiving:  Maureice Sherrill 6-44, Alexander Broome 5-23, Coleman Baker 2-21, Nathan Spillman 1-55 (LA); Reid Williford 2-25, London Humphreys 2-22, Bo Burklow 1-25, Langston Patterson 1-18 (CPA)


Records: CPA (11-3), Lipscomb Academy (12-1)


MVP: Alexander Broome (LA)


(Contact James Beach via email at or Twitter @beachnut1134)


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