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Do-it-all playmaker lifts Pierz to 3A title with 28-27 victory over Dassel-Cokato

By DAVID LA VAQUE, Star Tribune , 11/30/19, 3:15PM CST


Senior running back Matthias Algarin scored his third rushing touchdown of the game to give his team the lead with 38 seconds left.

Pierz running back Matthias Algarin (24) runs with the ball against Dassel-Cokato defensive lineman Teddy Bergquist (52) in the second quarter. Photo: David Berding • Special to the Star Tribune

Pierz playmaker Matthias Algarin entered the postgame press conference with a paper drinking cup in his teeth, his helmet in his right hand and the Class 3A Prep Bowl championship trophy in his left.

Algarin’s hands were full throughout the top-ranked Pioneers’ 28-27 escape from unranked Dassel-Cokato on Saturday at U.S. Bank Stadium. He rushed for a game-high 165 yards and three touchdowns, caught two passes for 44 yards, made five tackles on defense and returned two kicks.

Whatever it took for Pierz (14-0) to claim its fourth Prep Bowl title. The others came in 2004, 2015 and 2017.

Algarin, a senior and a preferred walk-on for the Nebraska football and track and field teams, shined brightest on the Pioneers’ go-ahead scoring drive in the fourth quarter.

Facing fourth-and-1, Algarin delivered a 3-yard run. On the next play, quarterback Peter Schommer placed a ball right in Algarin’s midsection for a 22-yard advance to the Chargers’ 3-yard line. Two plays later, Algarin scored with 38 seconds left in the game.

“That’s what he does,” Pierz coach Dan Saehr said. “The kid’s a playmaker.”

The clutch catch stood out for Algarin.

First report

The Pierz Pioneers capped an undefeated season with a 28-27 victory against Dassel-Cokato in the Class 3A Prep Bowl played Saturday at U.S. Bank Stadium.

The Pioneers (14-0) drove 80 yards for the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter. A 3-yard Matthias Algarin rushing touchdown concluded the drive with 38 seconds left.

Unranked Dassel-Cokato (10-4) didn’t quit. The Chargers tried to battle back, getting one first down before before ultimately throwing incomplete on fourth down near midfield.

Algarin, a senior, finished with three rushing touchdowns in the game as top-ranked Pierz won its fourth Prep Bowl title. The others were in 2004, 2015 and 2017.

Check back later for more on the game.

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