"Miller has one of the best offensive and defensive lines I have seen in high school football in a while," said Pierce City head coach Mac Whitehead. "I thought we played hard all night long, and we never quit. Miller made the plays to win. We looked like a young team Friday trying to find our way. We battled; we just came up short."
The Eagles started four freshmen, including Kole Kelley, who made his first varsity start at quarterback, and a host of sophomores because of injuries.
Kelley did complete one pass for 64 yards, but the play was wiped out by an ineligible receiver penalty.
Miller won the Spring River Valley Conference championship for the third consecutive year.
The Cardinals' quarterback Dalton Gulick scored on the game's first play from scrimmage, taking the ball 67-yards to pay dirt. Gulick finished the game eight for 13 passing for 159 yards. He also threw for three more touchdowns.
On Miller's second drive, Gulick connected with Jordan Moots on a 29-yard pitch and catch for the first of Moots' two touchdown catches.
Gulick also connected with Moots on a 35-yard touchdown pass play to open the second quarter scoring, and capped the scoring with a 35-yarder to Brendan Richardson.
The Eagles scored with 4:23 left in the first half when fullback Curtis Palmer bulled his way in from two yards out, two plays after his 60-yard dash up the middle. It was the only time all night Pierce City's offense penetrated past Miller's 45-yard line.
"We are now in the same position that we were in last year," said Whitehead. "If we want to make the playoffs, we have no room for error. We aren't going to change our approach or game plan. We just have to focus on the fundamentals and play sound football."
Pierce City travels to Marionville on Friday. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m.