SIOUX CENTER, Iowa | It looked to be Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley's fourth turnover of the first quarter. Then Cade Moser turned disaster into a touchdown.
The senior ripped the ball away from a Sioux Center defensive back on a third-and-13 pass in the end zone that flipped it to a 27-yard touchdown pass. That gave No. 1 BHRV (7-1, 6-0) a 20-7 lead as the Nighthawks went on to claim the Class 2A District 1 crown with a 34-14 victory here Friday.
"He had it in his hands and J.T. (Van't Hul) put it up and I just went for it and took it out of his hands," Moser said. "I don't know how to be quite honest. I just fell with it in the end zone.
"That was huge because we need playmakers to make plays and we weren't rolling on offense. We needed a spark and that definitely sparked us for sure."
It was Moser's second big play of the first half as the Nighthawks avoided major disaster in a first quarter that saw them lose two fumbles and throw an interception.
Moser and Van't Hul hooked up on a 50-yard touchdown strike early in the second quarter to swing the momentum back in the direction of BHRV making the score 14-7 with 9:43 to play in the half.
"He is a heck of a player and I just have to give him a chance and I guess I did," Van't Hul said.
The win secured the district title for the defending state champions who lost quite a few key players off of last year's team.
"It says I have great coaches and great kids," BHRV Coach Cory Brandt said. "I am blessed with who are around me if you want the truth. ... The biggest thing is we have a bunch of kids that just play hard."
The Nighthawks struck first as they marched the ball 66-yards with the opening possession of the game highlighted by Elliot Van Kekerix's 32-yard run. It was capped by Van't Hul's 3-yard dash into the end zone on fourth-and-3.
No. 4 Sioux Center (7-1, 5-1) got a fumble recovery from Chayce Hooyer after Van't Hul lost the ball as he tried to spin away from pressure. The Warriors worked a six-play drive that ended in an 8-yard pass from Cade Bleeker to Brendan Zeutenhorst to tie the game at 7-7.
BHRV would fumble the ball away on its next possession, but the Warriors returned the favor after one first down on the drive.
"The effort (the defense) gave was incredible but they prepared so well all week," Brandt said. "They invested and did everything they needed to do to be in the right spots."
The turnovers were not done for the Nighthawks as Van't Hul was picked off by Charlie Dykshorn. However, the Warriors were unable to turn the ensuing drive into any points before Moser started his big-play barrage.
"You just have to have a short memory and keep the ball secure," said Van't Hul of the turnovers. "
Moser now has seven touchdown receptions on the season after hauling in seven passes for 126 yards and the two scores.
Van't Hul threw his third touchdown pass of the game in the third quarter when he hit Beau De Jongh on a 14-yard strike. The quarterback added his second rushing TD in the fourth quarter form 11 yards to help account for all five touchdowns.
Van't Hul has enjoyed a stellar junior season leading all of Class 2A with a combined 1,887 yards rushing and passing entering Friday's game. H added 56 yards rushing and 200 through the air on Friday night.
BHRV ran for 206 yards in the game led by Elliot Van Kekerix's 105-yard effort.
Bleeker entered the game third in Class 2A with 19 touchdown passes and added one late on a 24-yard toss to Quinn Byker. Bleeker finished with 153 yards through the air and an interception.
The Nighthawks, whose only loss came in week 2 to Class A top-ranked West Lyon 35-28, conclude their regular season at home on Friday against Central Lyon/George-Little Rock.
Sioux Center, which had already clinched a playoff berth coming into the game, is at Pocahontas on Friday.