By PATRICK SLACK
A year ago, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa (BBE) handed Pierz its only regular season loss.
After dropping its opening three games of this season, visiting BBE entered its match-up with the Pioneers on a three-game winning streak, Friday.
With a deep touchdown pass midway through the first quarter and defensive stops on Pierz’ first three possessions, the Jaguars appeared ready to make a run at another upset.
Pierz turned the game around in a hurry with two touchdowns in the final three minutes of the second quarter, then kept that momentum going into the second half to run away with a 35-6 win.
Trailing 6-0, senior running back Josh Lanners powered into the end zone from one yard out with 3:06 remaining in the second quarter, with senior Travis Johnson converting the extra point to give Pierz a 7-6 lead.
The Pioneers’ defense followed with a stop, with the game looking set to go to halftime with a one-point gap.
However, senior Ben Boser hit junior Tyler Millner on a slant for a 61-yard catch-and-run touchdown with 50 seconds remaining in the second quarter to extend the lead to 14-6, a blow BBE could not recover from.
Lanners and senior Jon Fuhrman added touchdown runs in the second half and Boser connected with senior Brady Dorn on a 2-yard touchdown strike.
Boser spearheaded a balanced attack by completing 11-of-13 passes for a career-high 200 yards, with Lanners leading the rushing attack with 92 yards on 21 carries to go with three receptions for 53 yards.
Dorn finished with four receptions for 44 yards and senior Jess Kasper caught a 21-yard pass.
Defensively, Lanners had seven solo tackles, junior Nathan Athman made four solo tackles and assisted on five and senior T.J. Hoheisel had an interception.
Pierz wraps up the regular season with a home game against Maple Lake, Wednesday.
Pierz 35, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa 6
BBE 6 0 0 0 – 6
Pierz 0 14 14 7 – 35
BBE: Kuefler 56 pass from Goodwin (kick failed), 6:55.
PZ: Josh Lanners 1 run (Travis Johnson kick), 3:06.
PZ: Tyler Millner 61 pass from Ben Boser (Johnson kick), 0:50.
PZ: Lanners 4 run (Johnson kick), 8:01.
PZ: Brady Dorn 2 pass from Boser (Johnson kick), 0:24.
PZ: Jon Fuhrman 5 run (Beau Winscher kick), 4:49.
Pierz—Rushing: Josh Lanners, 21-92; Tyler Millner, 9-65; Evan Woitalla, 2-39; Jon Fuhrman, 3-38; Nathan Athman, 2-8; Robbie Skiba, 2-4; Beau Winscher, 1-2. Passing: Ben Boser, 11-13, 200. Receiving: Millner, 1-61; Lanners, 3-53; Brady Dorn, 4-44; Jess Kasper, 1-21; Athman, 1-12; T.J. Hoheisel, 1-9. Defense: Lanners, 7 solo tackles; Athman, 4 solo tackles, 5 assists; Hoheisel, interception.