An impressive season for the Pella High football team came to an end Monday night in Cedar Falls, as Solon’s 26-14 victory prevented the Little Dutch from returning to the State Championship game. The Spartans utilized team speed and nearly flawless execution to open up a 12-0 lead at halftime and extended that lead to 19-0 in the third quarter; keeping Pella off the scoreboard until the final period.
A 15-yard touchdown reception by Ryan Lanke put the Dutch on scoreboard with just under nine minutes remaining in the game, but Solon responded with a back-breaking 67-yard touchdown scamper by quarterback J.J. Hanus to take a 26-7 lead. Pella’s final score came on another 15-yard pass – this time to Spencer Boeyink – but the Dutch ran out of time and opportunities down the stretch as the Spartans held on.
The 26 points scored by Solon was the most points given up by the Pella defense all season, but the Spartans were still out-gained 326-to-313 in total offense. Teag Klyn finished the night completing 12-of-23 pass attempts for 197 yards and both touchdowns, while Alan Pfadenhauer led a limited Pella rushing attack with 8 carries for 46 yards.
Solon’s J.J. Hanus was certainly the game’s offensive MVP, as he rolled up 122 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries, while also completing 7-of-8 pass attempts for 80 yards and another score.
The loss concludes Pella’s season at 12-1 overall. Solon’s win earns them a spot in the Class 3-A Championship game, where they will face Sioux City Bishop Heelan.