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Cowboys down Eagles, assume control of NFC East

Dallas escapes Philly with a hard-fought 20-16 win. Associated Press

Print This November 09, 2009, 06:34 AM EST

By ROB MAADDI, AP Sports Writer

PHILADELPHIA (AP) Miles Austin punctuated his touchdown catch by emphatically firing the ball into the stands.

Take that, Philadelphia.

Tony Romo threw a 49-yard TD pass to Austin midway through the fourth quarter and the Dallas Cowboys beat the Eagles 20-16 Sunday night in the 100th meeting between the division rivals.

On the final day of the 2008 regular season, the Eagles dominated Dallas 44-6 in a do-or-die game for both teams. Philadelphia earned a wild-card berth with that victory, won two playoff contests on the road and advanced to the NFC championship game, losing at Arizona.

The Cowboys (6-2) spent the whole offseason thinking about that horrendous ending. They got their revenge and took over sole possession of first place in the NFC East with their fourth straight victory.

"Our last loss against them really motivated us to come out and play good," Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware said.

The Eagles fell to 5-3 and the New York Giants are 5-4 after a 5-0 start.

Romo finished 21 of 34 for 307 yards, one TD and one interception.

"We executed," Romo said. "I think the coaches put together a good plan. You just have to keep fighting and getting better."

Donovan McNabb was shaky after a strong performance in a 40-17 rout of the Giants last week. McNabb threw for 227 yards, one TD and was intercepted twice for the first time this season.

"We have to eliminate mistakes," McNabb said.

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