The Madison Bulldogs (2-6 overall, 2-6 Dak 12) will travel to Custer (2-6 overall, 0-6 Dak 12) for their last away game of the regular season.
The Bulldogs are rolling and a win will punch their ticket to the playoffs, but Custer is looking to play spoilers. Madison has won back-to-back games and the defense is anew. They’re looking to avoid missing the playoffs for the first time since 2011.
Custer comes into this game as a very young team with just a few seniors. They lack depth on both sides of the ball and have not beaten a Dak 12 opponent in multiple seasons. It’s looking like a rebuild for Custer, but you never know when a team can break through.
Their running game leads the way with a pair of tailbacks averaging more than five yards per carry. Senior Rider Bailey (6 ypc) leads the way with 91 carries for 519 yards and nine touchdowns. Followed by sophomore Daniel Immormino (5.2 ypc) with 45 carries on 260 yards. Bailey is the main carrier, but they spread the ball around in the backfield.
When they do throw it, the guys to look out for are the Virtue brothers, Kyle and Brady. Together they combine for eight of the nine TDs through the air for the Wildcats, three coming from Brady in the last game. Both with a long of 50+ yards this year. Custer isn’t afraid to take shots down the field.
Defensively, they start most of the same guys they do on offense, minus a couple of guys. Virtue brother – Kyle, is the main man on defense. He leads the team in sacks with five and has forced three fumbles, recovering one of them. He’s also fifth in tackles on the team and tied for second in tackles-for-loss. Though, they’ve allowed 305 points this year for an average of 38.1 points per game. Depth remains a concern for the Wildcats.
The Bulldogs come into the game playing their best defense all season. Allowing just 10 points and reeling in 11 sacks the last two games. Jordan Pederson leads the defense with 87 tackles and 12.5 tackles-for-loss. A defense that has struck fear in teams later this season through the air allowing just 144.5 yards passing per game with 13 interceptions. 10 of those INTs all coming from your secondary.
The main focus is on this offense though and if they’re able to score points. They haven’t scored more than 15 points in a game in a month and a half dating all the way back to week two.
Coming out with a win today isn’t enough for this team, they have to prove they can score to stand a chance against a top seed in the playoffs. The air attack will look to come alive as quarterback Cohen Hahn has to spread the ball around more so things can open up on offense. Too many times have teams been able to key in on Shane Veenhof and take him away for a half.
Kickoff is set for 6pm with pregame beginning at 5:30pm on AM 1390 Dakotas Best.