Belquist scores 5 TDs, No. 1 Rockets run past No. 4 Woodchucks 42-18

Chris Harris, DLJ Sports
New Rockford-Sheyenne's Bo Belquist (21) catches a 56-yard touchdown pass over St. John's Michael Dunn during the second quarter of a NDHSAA 9-Man football game, Friday, Sept. 6, 2019 in New Rockford.

NEW ROCKFORD — For the first two weeks of the season, 9-Man No. 1 New Rockford-Sheyenne has been, shall we say, taking opponents behind the woodshed with an extra large switch. The Rockets came into their game against No. 4 St. John winning games by 42 and 74 points respectively.

“Things have come easy up to this point,” admitted Rockets head coach Elliott Belquist.

The Woodchucks threw a monkey wrench into the Rockets high power propulsion system, slowing the game down enough to stay within striking distance and causing Bo Belquist to spend a huge portion of the third quarter on the sideline with cramps — which was the only thing that slowed down the UND bound senior.

Bo scored five touchdowns, the Rockets defense found its rhythm in the second half and New Rockford-Sheyenne beat the Woodchucks 42-18 Friday, Sept. 6 from the Jim Johnson Memorial Park.

“It was a physical grind and we haven’t been in that all year. … So for them to have a little adversity and things not always go their way and have an offense to move the ball on you and learning that we’re not in as good of shape that we need to be, it was good to see our kids fight through that,” Belquist said.

The Woodchucks (2-1) stood toe-for-toe with the Rockets, trailing by two early in the second quarter until Johnny Grann found Bo along the far sidelines where he beat St. John’s free safety Michael Dunn for a 56-yard touchdown, Bo’s third of the half, that gave the Rockets the 20-12 lead. The Rockets went 89 yards on four plays on their next possession, that was capped off with Hunter Thompson’s 29-yard touchdown reception from Grann and subsequent two-point conversion that gave the Rockets the 16 point cushion.

A 1-yard bolt by quarterback Adam Jolie pulled St. John to within 10 with a second to go before halftime.

“That’s a good physical team,” said Belquist about the Woodchucks. “We knew coming in with the triple option, they do exactly what they show you on film. It’s a great game plan, use every second they can and take a lot of time for each possession.”

After Bo was rehydrated, he added touchdown runs of 5 and 26 yards in the fourth quarter that sealed the win.

Bo finished the game with 317 total yards (224 rushing), 11.5 tackles and a pass breakup as the Rockets go into the bye week at 3-0.

“I feel good (going into the bye) but there’s always things to work on.” Belquist said.

Bradley Defender had touchdown runs of 5 and 3 yards for St. John.

Chris Harris can be reached at and on Twitter: @ChrisHarris_DLJ

St. John at New Rockford-Sheyenne box score

St. John       6 12 0 0  — 18

NR-S            14 14 0 14  — 42

First Quarter

NR-S — Belquist 60 run (Grann run), 11:14.

StJ — Defender 5 run (pass failed), 3:53.

NR-S — Belquist 18 run (pass failed), 1:18.

Second Quarter

StJ — Defender 3 run (run failed), 10:00.

NR-S — Belquist 56 pass from Grann (pass failed), 9:05.

NR-S — Thompson 29 pass from Grann (Holzwarth pass from Grann), 3:34.

StJ — Jollie 1 run (run failed), :01.

Fourth Quarter

NR-S — Belquist 5 run (Holzwarth pass from Grann), 3:51.

NR-S — Belquist 26 run (run failed), :18.