Penalties and lack of offense cost Pella as they fell 42-0 to Grinnell in their final non district matchup Friday night.
Pella’s defense appeared to have Grinnell stopped on third and long on their opening possession, however, a personal foul facemask penalty gave the Tigers new life, which they eventually turned into a 26 yard touchdown pass from Eli Dunne to Joe Nowasell. Numerous false start penalties stalled Pella’s first offensive possession and once again the Tigers moved down field and struck through the air from 26 yards out to take a 14-0 lead. Pella coach Jay Mckinstrey said those early mistakes were a difference maker.
Another big swing came late in the second quarter when Grinnell scored twice in :10 seconds. The first was a 35 yard run , then Pella fumbled the ensuing kickoff return which the Tigers took back 20 yards for a touchdown and a 21-0 game quickly became 35-0 with 3:15 to play in the first half.
For the second straight week Pella struggled to get any offensive momentum as they were held to just 78 total yards. With 85 yards in penalties Mckinstrey said no matter who you play, when your penalty yards out number your offensive yards, it’s tough to win and that will be a major area of focus in upcoming practices. Josh De Waard completed 6-of-12 passes for 44 yards and freshman Nathan Henry rushed eight times for 30 yards.
Pella is 1-2 on the season and will begin Class 3A District 8 play Friday night when they host Knoxville.