For post-game reaction from head coach Jim Good, S Christian Willman, LB Josh Bain, and Dale Jurney, the father of Piper alum and current assistant coach, Drew Jurney, click here.
In Arden Hills, the Pipers took an early lead over the host Royals.
After the Pipers were forced to punt on their second possession of the game, John Broback (So., Apple Valley, Minn.) punted to the Bethel 14-yard line. The Royals’ Joel Quick ran two yards before the Pipers forced a fumble, recovered by Christian Willman (Fy,. Rosemount, Minn.) on the Bethel 16-yard line.
Adam Meyer (So., Cold Spring, Minn.) needed just one snap to take advantage of the turnover, throwing a 16-yard TD pass to Anthony Iten (Jr., Fridley, Minn.). Derek Johnson’s (Sr., Casa Grande, Ariz.) kick was good for the 7-0 Hamline lead at 10:05 in the first quarter.
The next four possessions ended in turnovers, starting with Cody Kielsa (Fy., Buffalo, Minn.) intercepting Caleb Graff at the Hamline 46-yard line. On the ensuing Piper possession, Meyer was picked off at the Bethel 44-yard line. The Piper defense responded by forcing Bethel running back Logan Flannery to fumble. Hamline linebacker Josh Bain (Jr., Spring Valley, Minn.) recovered the fumble.
Meyer then threw a second interception at the Hamline 35-yard line. Bethel took advantage of the possession change, as Kevin Lindh ran 16 yards for the touchdown. Matt Wetherell’s kick was good to tie the game at 7-7 to conclude the first quarter.
Bethel took a 10-7 lead at 11:46 in the second quarter on a 23-yard field goal by Wetherell.
On Wetherell’s kickoff after the score, Alex House (Jr., Champlin, Minn.) ran the return back 21 yards to the Hamline 37-yard line. Tim Queck (So., Annandale, Minn.) had an 11-yard catch, House pulled in a 17-yard reception, and Iten had a seven-yard catch - all on third down - to help the Pipers march down the field.
The 10-play, 63-yard drive ended with Meyer hooking up with Iten in the end zone for the second time, this time on a 20-yard TD pass. Johnson’s PAT was good for Hamline to go ahead 14-10 with 6:56 to play in the first half.
The Royals responded two minutes later with a 24-yard rushing touchdown from Lindh. Wetherell’s kick was good at 5:09 as the hosts regained a lead at 17-14.
Hamline’s special teams stepped up to keep the score at 17-14 heading into halftime as Willman blocked a Wetherell 29-yard field goal attempt as time ran out.
The Pipers evened the score ten minutes into the second half as Johnson hit a 38-yard field goal with 4:59 left in the third quarter.
The score remained tied at 17-17 when Wetherell missed a 33-yard field goal, wide right, with 1:30 remaining in the game.
On Hamline’s next possession, the Royals held the Pipers in their own zone, forcing them to punt and give Bethel the ball back with 28 seconds on the clock. The Royals got into field goal range on a 26-yard catch by Quick.
As time expired, Wetherell edged a 40-yard field goal through the uprights for the 20-17 Bethel win.
Meyer had 230 yards and two touchdowns on 18-for-31 passing in the game. Queck had 106 receiving yards on eight catches and had 141 all-purpose yards after adding 35 yards on kick returns. Iten had 79 receiving yards on five catches including the two touchdowns.
With the pair of successful extra-point kicks, Johnson is now 16-for-16 in PATs on the season and is 6-for-7 in field goal attempts.
Defensively for the Pipers, Willman finished with five tackles (three solo, two assists) and a pass break-up in addition to the fumble recovery and blocked field goal. Marc McDonald (Fy., Portland, Ore.) had 17 tackles in the game (14 solo, three assists). Bain and Brady Lorenzen (Sr., Grand Meadow, Minn.) added nine tackles (seven solo, two assists) apiece, in addition to Bain’s fumble recovery. Kielsa had five solo tackles and a pass break-up in addition to the interception.
The Pipers fall to 2-4, 1-4 MIAC with the loss while Bethel improves to 5-2, 4-1 MIAC. Hamline will remain on the road, traveling to Concordia next Saturday, October 23, for a 1:00 p.m. start.