If nothing else, the MidAmerica Nazarene knows how to rally.
The Pioneers proved as much on Saturday, scoring twice in the final five minutes to hang on for a 22-21 victory over William Penn (Iowa) in Olathe.
Javon Taylor ran in the winning touchdown from 8 yards out with 2:37 to play, and the defense made the lead stick.
Taylor finished with 126 yards and two touchdowns. Trey Cooper threw for 144 yards and a touchdown for MidAmerica. The Pioneers defense held William Penn to seven points in the second half, despite allowing 430 rushing yards on 68 carries.
Other area games
At South Dakota School of Mines & Technology 64, William Jewell 41: William Jewell did its best to keep pace in a game where the two teams combined for 50 points in the first quarter alone, but the Cardinals fell short. Quarterback Brad Strauss threw for 291 yards and three touchdowns for William Jewell. He also ran for 98 yards and two more scores. Anthony Mullins caught nine passes for 123 yards and a score for the Cardinals.
At Baker 89, Culver-Stockton 27: Baker, ranked No. 5 in the NAIA coaches’ poll, squeezed a whole game’s worth of offense into the first quarter, scoring 44 points. Logan Brettell threw for 300 yards and five touchdowns — in the first quarter. He finished with 329 yards and a school-record seven touchdowns. Cornell Brown caught five passes for 80 yards and three touchdowns for the Wildcats.
At Benedictine 58, Avila 6: Benedictine had no trouble with Avila. Ejay Johnson and Tyler Henness each rushed for two touchdowns. Jacob Koester threw for 136 yards and a score for the Ravens. Avila was led by Jordan Radebaugh’s 144 passing yards.
At Morningside (Iowa) 62, Ottawa 0: Ottawa lost the season opener to No. 3-ranked Morningside. The Braves were held to just 99 yards of total offense in the loss.
At Concordia 23, Saint Mary 7: Saint Mary fell into a 14-0 hole and never recovered. Jared Garcia caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from T.J. Austin for Saint Mary’s lone score.
Langston 23, at Lincoln 13: Lincoln came up short against rival Langston. Lincoln got 123 passing yards and two touchdowns from quarterback Dennis Vinson. Anthony Townsend caught both touchdown passes, and finished with 58 receiving yards.
Missouri Valley 28, at Graceland 3: Missouri Valley followed last week’s upset of nationally-ranked William Penn with a solid showing against Graceland. Jake Bridges paced the Vikings with 158 passing yards, 68 rushing yards and three total touchdowns.
Midwestern (Texas) State 31, at Truman State 19: Truman State trailed by one point at halftime,but couldn’t keep pace with the visitors in the second half. The Bulldogs managed just 255 yards of total offense. Quarterback Jaden Barr threw for 110 yards and a touchdown in the loss.
At Missouri S&T 62, Bacone 14: Missouri S&T scored four touchdowns in the first quarter and never looked back. Seven different Miners found the end zone in a balanced offensive effort. DeShawn Jones finished with 46 rushing yards and a touchdown on nine carries.
Thursday’s area games
Northwest Missouri 41, at Emporia State 14: The defending Division II national-champion Bearcats fell behind 7-0 early before rattling off 41 straight points. Kyle Zimmerman threw for 310 yards and two touchdowns for Northwest Missouri, and Phil Jackson rushed for 94 yards on 14 carries. The Bearcat defense held Emporia State to 183 yards and scored on a fumble return.
Central Missouri State 34, at Pittsburg State 27: Central Missouri State saw a 14-point second-half lead disappear before regaining the upper hand in spectacular fashion. Garrett Fugate hit Tyler Jones on a 79-yard touchdown pass with 4 minutes, 28 seconds to play, and the Mules went on to win. Fugate threw for 282 yards and two scores. Jones had 161 receiving yards on three receptions. Pitt State got 191 receiving yards and a touchdown from Levi Copeland on nine catches.
At Missouri Western 44, Nebraska-Kearney 21: Missouri Western jumped out to a 30-point lead and cruised to a victory. Running back Josh Caldwell paced the Griffons with 168 yards and a touchdown in 23 carries. Missouri Western’s Skyler Windmiller threw for 160 yards and two touchdowns. The Missouri Western defense held Nebraska-Kearney to 20 rushing yards in 30 carries.