Huskers fend off Paynesville 34-22 to improve to 2-1
By Tyler Ohmann
A more than 90 minute weather delay between the first and second halves did not slow down the effort of the Pierz Pioneers in a steamy 34-0 shut out of sixth-ranked Melrose, Sept. 4.
The No. 3 Pioneers rolled to the shutout thanks to a strong defensive effort, as they held the Dutchmen offense to 78 yards of total offense.
Linebackers Brett Kapsner and Matt Kummet anchored the strong defense with 11 and eight tackles,
“We held them to just one first down and 22 total yards in the second half,” said Pierz head coach Leo Pohlkamp. “It was just a great team effort tonight against an excellent team.”
The Pioneers led 14-0 at halftime thanks to a Lane Girtz touchdown run and a 47-yard bomb from senior quarterback Aaron Weber to fellow senior Michael Meyer.
Then lightning struck at about 8:15 p.m., minutes into halftime.
The teams did not take the field again until nearly 10 p.m.
When the teams finally did retake the field, Pierz was dominant. Noah Boser scored twice, and Girtz galloped in from 26 yards out to solidify the win.
The Pioneers ground attack went for 357 yards, despite losing senior tailback Jonny Kasper, who left early due to injury.
Pierz received 120 yards on 15 carries from Girtz and 100 yards on 16 carries from Boser. Nick Herold also had 89 yards rushing to help the cause.
“Our lines controlled the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball tonight,” Pohlkamp said.
Pierz (3-0) also played at undefeated Eden Valley-Watkins, Friday, but results were unavailable by press time.
The Pioneers take the field Friday at home against Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted.
Holdingford grinds out
win at Paynesville
The defending Class AA state champs improved to 2-1 after a 34-22 win over Paynesville, Sept. 4.
The Huskers notched the first score on an Aaron Maleska touchdown run in the second quarter.
After Paynesville took the lead 8-7 at halftime, the Huskers’ Blake Patrick scored on a 27-yard strike from senior quarterback Alex Knapp to regain it.
Brandon Skroch ran in from nine yards out later in the quarter to put Holdingford up 21-8.
The Bulldogs again tightened the Huskers’ lead, but Griffin Olson would score on a 10-yard touchdown carry to extend it.
The Bulldogs would score once more, but Nolan Prokott was on the receiving end of a 38-yard connection from Knapp to secure the lead for good in the fourth.
The Huskers also played at Maple Lake Friday, but results were unavailable by press time.
Holdingford’s homecoming game will be Friday against Rockford.