Shaw outscored Columbus 30-7 in the second half to survive a back-and-forth ball game Friday night at Kinnett Stadium thanks to two late turnover returns from Jonathan Lyons.
Columbus moved to the Shaw 14-yard line trailing 30-27 with less than two minutes remaining in the game.
"We told ourselves all week that the playoffs for us started this week," Shaw coach Kyle Adkins said. "We had to win all three of these to get in. This is round one. It doesn't have to be pretty. You're not going to be perfect; you've just got to find a way to win."
Blue Devil quarterback Derrick James was sacked by Tayshun Davis, who knocked the ball loose from James. Lyons picked up the loose ball at the 18-yard line and sprinted 82 yards to get up 10 points, 37-27, with 1:31 remaining.
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James quickly drove Columbus across midfield and down to the Raider 36-yard line before Lyons picked off a pass across the middle and returned it to the Blue Devil 1-yard line for a 73-yard return to preserve the win.
The Raiders trailed 20-7 at the half before 16 unanswered points in the third quarter.
Hunter Eaton rolled an onside kick on the opening play of the second half that was covered by Deandre Howard at the Columbus 49-yard line.
Shaw scored on a 4-play 49-yard drive when Sydarrian Cobb ran in from 24-yards out to get to within 20-14.
After a Columbus three-and-out, Shaw drove to the Blue Devil 6-yard line before the drive stalled and Eaton kicked a 24-yard field goal to cut the lead to 20-17.
Shaw took its first lead of the contest on a 1-play drive when Tyron Huff found Jakobi Long on a 47-yard pass. A failed snap on the attempt kept the lead at 23-20.
Columbus responded with a 51-yard drive to retake the lead at 27-23 when James Traylor got behind the Shaw defense and caught a 22-yard pass from James.
On its next possession Huff again hooked up with Long on a 46-yard pass to set up 1st-and-goal at the Blue Devil 7-yard line.
Rodney Clark scored on 3rd-and-goal from 2-yards away to put Shaw back on top 30-27.
Columbus got on the board in the first quarter when Raymond Cochran returned a Huff pass 24-yards for a pick 6 on Shaw's first possession of the game and a 7-0 Blue Devil lead.
Friday at Kinnett
Columbus 10 10 7 0--27
Shaw 7 0 16 14--37
C- Raymond Cochran 24 interception return (Ryan Anderson kick), 10:28
C- Anderson 32 field goal, 6:47
S- Jakobi Long16 pass from Tyron Huff (Hunter Eaton kick), :41
C- Derrick James 2 run (Anderson kick), 10:42
C- Anderson 29 field goal, :07
S- Sydarrian Cobb 24 run (Eaton kick), 10:30
S- Eaton 24 field goal, 5:12
S- Long 47 pass from Huff (bad snap), 4:09
C-James Traylor 22 pass from James (Anderson kick), 1:18
S- Rodney Clark 2 run (Eaton kick), 11:28
S- Jonathan Lyons 82 fumble return (Eaton kick), 1:31
Records: Columbus 1-7, 0-5 Region 5-AAAA. Shaw 3-4, 1-4. Next: Columbus, home vs. Alexander, Friday, 7:30 p.m.. Shaw, at Fayette County, Friday, 7:30 p.m.