Pine River football team wins fourth straight game

LAKE CITY — Pine River’s football team made it four straight wins with a 44-13 victory on Friday in Highland Conference action over Lake City.

Pine River is 4-1 overall and 3-0 in the league.

“It was an excellent game for us,” Pine River coach Terry Martin said. “It was one of those typical team wins for us. We had some really good performances from a lot of different kids, which is good. We were coming over some emotional wins (over Beal City and McBain).”

Justin Balcer scored in the first quarter to give the Trojans a 7-0 lead. Mason Powell had a 66-yard TD scamper for the Bucks but the two-point conversion failed. It was 7-6, Lake City, after one period. Powell passed to Hunter Esiline for 44 yards and Elijah Lewis had a 75-yard run for an 18-7 halftime lead.

Powell passed 52 yards to Esiline in the third quarter and Powell threw a 3-yard strike in the fourth for a 30-7 lead. Balcer had a 3-yard run in the fourth for Lake City. 

But the Bucks put it away on touchdown runs of 2 and 10 yards by Powell and Park. Powell rushed for 154 yards while Lewis gained 101, Joe Rigling had 31 and Tristen Nelson had 20. Powell was 5-of-7 for 151 yards. Esiline caught three passes for 142 yards.

Andrew Park and Rigling had seven tackles, while Nelson had six and Lewis added five.

Pine River is home with Manton on Friday for Homecoming.

“Manton picked up an odd loss to Lake City early,” Pine River coach Terry Martin said. “But then they bounced back and moved some players around. I think they’re one of the most dangerous teams in the conference. I thought that going into the season. They have a couple of extraordinary athletes. They have a kid with good speed playing quarterback now. It should be a tough game for us.”