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Sports

October 21, 2012

Field goals lift Dallas over Carolina, 19-14

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Dallas Cowboys made all the right plays at the end, and their two-game losing streak is over.

Dan Bailey kicked four field goals and Tony Romo threw for 227 yards and a touchdown as the Cowboys held on for a 19-14 win over the Carolina Panthers on Sunday.

With his team trailing 14-13, Romo led the Cowboys into field goal range with a 10-play, 44-yard drive, with Bailey hitting from 28 yards out and helping Dallas (3-3) to its ninth consecutive regular-season win  over the Panthers.

Miles Austin had five catches for 97 yards and a touchdown after week after Dallas’ emotional 31-29 loss to Baltimore.

This game had its share of drama, too.

On a fourth-and-1 at their 39 with 2:11 remaining, the Panthers caught Dallas’ defense changing personnel and Cam Newton rushed to the line. He quickly took the snap and completed a pass to Greg Olsen for a first down, but officials ruled the Cowboys called timeout before the snap.

On the next play, Morris Claiborne collided with Panthers receiver Louis Murphy before the ball arrived, but no flag was thrown.

The Cowboys ran more time off the clock and Bailey added his fourth field goal — a 38-yarder — with 53 seconds left.

With no timeouts left, the Panthers (1-5) weren’t able to get past midfield on their final possession and lost their fourth straight game.

Cam Newton finished 21 of 37 for 233 yards with one touchdown and an early interception.

It marked the fourth time in six games Carolina’s offense failed to score 15 points after a season in which they finished fifth in the league in scoring averaging more than 25 points per game.

The Cowboys trailed 7-3 at halftime, but took control after Austin beat rookie cornerback Josh Norman for a 36-yard touchdown pass from Romo and Bailey connected on a 49-yard field goal.

Down six points, the Panthers went to a no-huddle offense in the fourth quarter after going three-and-out on their first three possessions of the second half and it seemed to tame Dallas’ pass rush. Carolina quickly moved 75 yards on nine plays and Mike Tolbert gave the Panthers a 14-13 lead with a 2-yard plunge.

The Panthers got some help along the way as cornerback Brandon Carr was called for defensive holding on Steve Smith in the end zone on a third down play, giving the Panthers a fresh set of downs.

But unlike last week’s loss to Baltimore, the Cowboys managed the clock well late in the game.

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