Pierz Pioneers sig

A pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter sealed a 20-0 non-district victory for Pierz, Thursday, in a defensive showdown with Holdingford.

In a game played on neutral turf in Sauk Centre, the Huskers were the home team on the scoreboard. That wasn’t used a lot until late, however, as both teams were led by their defense.

The two offenses combined for 299 total yards, 197 for the Pioneers and 102 for Holdingford. Both teams got most of their total on the ground.

Pierz put its first points of the season on the board relatively early. Kirby Fischer got loose for a 39-yard scamper to the end zone that put the Pioneers on top 6-0 with 5:44 to play in the first quarter.

From there, the defenses took control. The score remained unchanged until more than halfway through the final stanza.

With 4:43 remaining, Pierz put a little distance between the two squads when quarterback Andy Winscher completed his only pass of the night — he only threw the ball twice. He made it count, connecting with Zach Jones on a 66-yard touchdown strike.

Max Barclay plunged in for the 2-point conversion, and Pierz had some breathing room at 14-0.

Fischer put a stamp on the victory when he broke free again, this time on a 17-yard romp. That put the Pioneers in control at 20-0 with just 2:23 on the clock.

Pierz finished the night with 131 yards on the ground. Fischer led the way with 70 yards and two scores, while Trevor Radunz racked up 44 yards on eight attempts.

Holdingford, which finished with 84 rushing yards, was led by Connor Patrick, who took the rock 10 times for 59 yards. Huskers quarterback Drew Lange completed 2-of-10 passes for 17 yards and was picked off once. Ryder Petersen caught both of those passes for 17 yards receiving.

Defensively, Petersen also had seven solo tackles and assisted on four others. Cyril Feia ended the night with two fumble recoveries for Holdingford.

Pierz (1-0, 0-0) opens Mid-State Sub 1 District play at 7 p.m. Friday in a home bout with Minnewaska Area (0-1, 0-0). The Lakers dropped a 46-0 contest against Royalton in their opener, Thursday.

Holdingford (0-1, 0-0) is at Royalton (1-0, 0-0) for its Mid-State Sub 2 District opener at 7 p.m. Friday. The Royals took down Minnewaska Area, 46-0, Thursday.

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