G/T expects a smash-mouth game
GRAETTINGER – Last week Graettinger/Terril (3-1, 5-1) pulled off a heart-stopping victory over Laurens-Marathon, 29-28. This week they face a team that also won a squeaker of its own over the Chargers when West Bend-Mallard (1-3, 1-5) rolls into town.
WB-M’s lone win was that 23-22 victory on Sept. 18 and they are coming off a 50-point dismantling at the hands of North Sentral Kossuth, but G/T coach Karlton Hector will not be taking the Wolverines lightly.
“They are a power run team,” he said. “They get out of that quick huddle and run it right at you. Defensively we have to read our keys quickly and be in the correct position.”
Thus far the Knights’ defense has been outstanding, holding four of their six opponents to eight points or less.
Offensively the Knights will lean on their two-headed running attack of Nate Howard and Drew Skattebo.
Howard has rushed the ball 83 times for 952 yards and 15 touchdowns on the year while Skattebo has totaled 454 yards on 61 carries and 10 touchdowns.
G/T has been focusing on their offensive line play this week. “We’re working on making sure we identify the correct defensive fronts,” said Hector. “We need to be on the same page and work as a unit.”
WB-M’s rushing attack is led by Andy Riesenberg, who has carried the ball 114 times for 479 yards and five touchdowns.
While the Wolverines are a run oriented team, they are effective when forced to pass. Quarterback Ethan Fehr has connected on 20-of-48 passes for 181 yards with 13 touchdowns compared to just two interceptions.
Coach Hector expects tonight’s match up to be a tough ball game.
“[WB-M] has been in some close ball games this year,” he said. “It’s going to be a bang-it-out, smash- mouth type game. It’s going to be a grind. Special teams and turnovers will decide the winner.”
Key to the game: Protect the football.
While G/T quarterback Cody Dyhrkopp has only thrown three interceptions, he has thrown a pick in both of their close games this season. One in a 38-22 loss to North Sentral Kossuth and the other in a 29-28 victory over Laurens-Marathon.