Titans fall short against top-ranked Van Meter

VAN METER — As everyone expected, the battle between Van Meter and South Central Calhoun came down to just a few yards and points here Friday night.

With a spot in the Class 1A semifinals on the line, the top-ranked Bulldogs claimed a 10-6 victory to advance over the Titans.

Van Meter (11-0 overall) will face Iowa City Regina next Saturday inside the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls. In the other semi, defending champion West Sioux meets West Lyon.

The Bulldogs struck first, as Zach Madden hit a 32-yard field goal early in the second quarter.

South Central Calhoun, which has advanced to six quarterfinals in the past 10 years, went up 6-3 on a Blake McAlister touchdown run with 7:19 to go before halftime.

The McAlister score was set up by a fourth-and-1 conversion run by Brennan Holder.

Dalten Van Pelt found the end zone from a yard out with 1:29 to go before the break for the eventual winning points, as neither team would score again.

Last year, the Bulldogs came up short against West Sioux in the semis, 38-35. They have reached the semifinal round each of the past five seasons.

Van Pelt ran for 56 yards on 25 carries, with quarterback Anthony Potthoff throwing for 174 yards and running for another 36.

The Titans finish the year 10-1 as this was the final game for seniors Josh Henkenius, Chase Scheidegger, Jason Goff, Zane Neubaum, Landon Schleisman, Keagen Meyer, Gage Cates, Jacob Schultz, Seth Reiss, Tristin Patterson, Bishop King, Brian King, Hunter Voith and Daniel Stevens.