Pekin falls one game short of trip to UNI-Dome
Pekin’s dream of making the trip to the UNI-Dome this season came to a halt Friday in Brooklyn.
The B-G-M Bears (12-0) defeated Pekin 29-8 in the quarterfinal round of the Iowa State Football playoffs.
Coming into the game, Pekin (9-3) coach Joe Donovan didn’t feel like B-G-M was any tougher than his squad. The Panthers lost to the Bears 19-7 on a cold night in Packwood week nine, and showed they could compete with a team of B-G-M’s quality.
The Pekin defense was on the field for much of the first half. B-G-M kept the ball away from the Panthers by containing long drives. Bears’ senior running back Jack Kline was a workhorse, carrying the football 42 times for 206 yards and four touchdowns. Kline is one of the top running backs in the nation, running for 1,684 yards and 31 touchdowns this season. The Bears squeezed the life out of Pekin with time-consuming drive after time-consuming drive. The Panthers turned the ball over four times, which sealed their fate.
The Bears will move on to play another undefeated team in the form of Wapsie Valley, Fairbank. Wapsie Valley defeated B-G-M last season and went on to win the state championship over Hinton. In 2011, Pekin lost to Wapsie Valley in the first round of the playoffs.
The Panthers will lose a host of important seniors players before next season. Quarterback Kolby Allsup and running back Petie Clubb will both be graduating. Allsup was third on the team in rushing while Clubb was second. They shared 22 touchdowns between them.
Top defenders Jared Bond, Eric Adam, and Trenton Conger, along with other seniors such as Brody Long and Cade Millikin will also be leaving high school.
Sophomore running back Chase Copeland, the team’s leading rusher, will be back to lead the offense. Coming into the B-G-M game, Copeland had rushed for 1,086 yards and 17 touchdowns.
Freshman Trevor Northup got time at quarterback this season and may be the next in line to inherit the job. Tanner Adam, Christian Wittrock and Cole Reighard will be back next season as well.
Pekin advanced two rounds further than it did last year, when it lost to Lisbon in the first round of the playoffs.