Updated: November 27, 2021 03:55 PM
Created: November 27, 2021 03:41 PM
(ABC 6 News) - The Plainview-Elgin-Millville Bulldogs battled all game long, but came up short to Dassle-Cokato on Saturday in the Class 3A championship game.
Bulldogs making their 5th state appearance and their first since 2011 at U.S. Bank Stadium in the state football championships.
Bulldogs senior Connor McGuire worked the ball downfield on their opening drive, converting a 5-yard run on 4th down to keep the drive alive. In the very next play, McGuire was picked off trying to fit a ball to John Evers.
Chargers took advantage of the turnover, keeping the ball on the ground behind their workhorse Eli Gillman, got the first points of the game from 1 yard out, 7-0.
Plainview-Elgin-Millville would answer, McGuire, drove his team 60-yards and finished with a quarterback keeper up the right side from 1 yard out, 7-7.
Next possession, Dassel-Cokato would use three backs to bully their way 74 yards on 20 plays, chewing up 9 minutes and 30 seconds punching it in for another touchdown run by Eli Gillman, 14-7.
With seconds left on the clock in the first half, Bulldogs use a hook and ladder from McGuire to Kaiden Peters, who lateraled to Jason Feils, going 46 yards for the touchdown, 14-14.
The Chargers opened the second half by chewing up more than 8 and a half minutes, driving 80 yards with Eli Gillman capturing his third touchdown on the day from 2 yards out, 21-14.
Bulldogs threatened to tie the game early in the 4th quarter, but a statue of liberty trick play was snuffed out by the Chargers defense holding PEM to 7 yards when they need 9 on 4th down.
A rare 35-yard pass from Gregory Clark to Eli Gillman set up the Chargers in scoring position. Keyton Johnson made it a 14 point game by finishing off the drive in the endzone, 28-14.
Bulldogs turned right around and drove the ball 67 yards on 13 plays, and finished with a walk into the endzone by Hunter Tentis from a pass by Connor McGuire from 9 yards out, 28-21.
Bulldogs completed an onside kick and took over at the Chargers 48 yard line. On the ensuing drive, McGuire under heavy pressure got the ball out but had nobody open. Chargers took over.
Eli Gillman and the Chargers worked the clock and finished the game by kneeling on it inside the goal line. Gillman finished with 150 yards on the ground, 3 touchdowns and 43 yards through the air.
Bulldogs Connor McGuire had 265 passing yards and 2 touchdowns, Jason Feils added 75 receiving yards and 1 touchdown.
The undefeated Dassel-Cokato Chargers won their first-ever state championship in school history beating the Bulldogs 28-21.
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