Prep football: Vikings outrush BOLD
By Jenny Kirk
MINNEOTA — Holding a 20-17 lead with just over five minutes remaining, No. 2 seed Minneota/Lincoln HI stepped up in a big way Saturday against the third-seeded BOLD Warriors, proving to be a valiant contender in the Section 5AA football competition.
Sparked by a 44-yard run by Nathan Pavek, M/LH set its sights on the end zone with 5:07 remaining in the fourth quarter. The Vikings successfully ran the ball, using up the clock and inching toward the end zone, resulting in a Jeff Gladis touchdown run with 1:16 left to play. A Diego Meza-Palmer extra kick gave the team a 27-17 advantage.
With the game still on the line, the M/LH defense also stepped up against the aggressive BOLD offense, beginning with a deflected pass by Austin Buysse. After two more incomplete passes and a false start penalty, the Warriors were at fourth-down and 15.
That’s when Jordan Beck sacked the quarterback, putting an exclamation point on the situation and securing the 27-17 victory for the Vikings.
While surging to the top of the Class A competition the past few years, the Vikings were untested at the next level, leaving some question marks as to how the first year of AA playoffs would go.
The Vikings didn’t waste any time in the semifinal game Saturday, marching downfield and putting up six points on an Alec Engler touchdown run from 12 yards out at the 10:09 mark. The effort was a mental breakthrough as much as it was physical.
Six minutes later, BOLD was able to take a 7-6 lead when Ben Steffel ran for a 5-yard touchdown. The Warriors capitalized on a field goal with 8:03 remaining in the second quarter and held a 10-6 edge before M/LH struck again.
After Engler put his team in a good position on the return, Pavek completed the drive by scoring from three yards out to give the Vikings a 13-10 lead at the half.
Minneota 27, BOLD 17
BOLD (7-3) 7 3 0 7 — 17
Minneota/LHI (10-0) 6 7 0 14 — 27
M – Alex Engler 12 run (kick fail)
B – Ben Steffel 5 run (Nick Kubesh kick)
B – Kubesh 24 field goal
M – Nathan Pavek 3 run (Simon Ankersen kick)
M – Jeff Gladis 9 run (Diego Meza kick)
B – Lane Stadther 1 run (Kubesh kick)
M – Gladis 3 run (Meza kick)
First downs: 12 … Rushing: 36-169… Passing (com-att-yds-int.): 6-19-84-1… Fumbles lost: 0… Penalties: 1-5
Rushing: Ben Steffel 15-76, Brad Wolff 12-75, Lane Stadther 9-18 … Passing: Stadther 6-19-84-1 ... Receiving: Trevor Nissen 4-70, Wolff 1-7, Max Buchtel 1-7 … Punting: Kubesh 4-43.3 … Tackles (solo-assist): Sawyer Tersteeg 10-7, Nissen 6-0, Wolff 2-4, Brett Gruns 4-0, Ryan Rauenhorst 2-3, Logan Sandgren 2-3, Joel Erickson 2-2, Connor Riley 1-2, Steffel 2-0 … QB sacks: Tersteeg 1 … Tackles for loss: Tersteeg 2, Sandgren/Rauenhorst 1
First downs: 20 … Rushing: 44-282 … Passing (com-att-yds-int.): 7-13-72-0 … Fumbles lost: 0 … Penalties: 3-25
Rushing: Jeff Gladis 23-119, Nathan Pavek 8-117, Cole Hennen 4-34, Alex Engler 5-21, Austin Buysse 4-(-9)… Passing: Buysse 7-13-72-0 ... Receiving: Engler 2-29, Gladis 2-15 … Punting: Engler 4-36.5 … Tackles (solo-assist): Garrett Hennen 4-5, Matt Knutson 3-4, Nathan Pavek 3-3 … Interceptions: Andrew Behnke 1