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Eagles Can’t Compensate for Slow First Half, Fall to Raiders

Jacob Sobotka and Mount Ayr’s ground attack proved to be too much for the Pella Christian Eagles last night as they fell by a final score of 45 – 29. The Eagles’ offense was shut down in the first half – Coltin Collins was 0 for 8 passing – as they only gained 75 total yards through 24 minutes of play and trailed 26 – 0 at the break. “It would have been easy for us to just throw in the towel and start thinking about next game,” Coach Darryl De Ruiter said. “Coach [Kacmarynski] did a great job of challenging our coaches and our players at halftime. Hey, we’ve got another half to play. This game is about heart. This game is about character. This game is about showing what we can do and what we want to do as a football team and we’re real pleased and proud of the second half, because the second half was definitely a different half.” Indeed, the second half was a much different story than the first. The Eagles would come out and score on their first possession of the second half on a 25-yard touchdown run by Mason Howerzyl, who would finish the game with 219 yards rushing. The Raiders and Eagles would trade touchdowns throughout the third and fourth quarters, but Mount Ayr’s strong first half proved to be the difference maker. The win completes Mount Ayr’s perfect regular season at 9 – 0, while the loss drops the Eagles to 6 – 3 overall and 3 – 3 in Class 1A District 7. Pella Christian will open up the playoffs on the road this Wednesday against St. Albert Council Bluffs.