The No. 8 seed Madison Bulldogs are on the road for playoff action in the Quarterfinals of the 2023 South Dakota High School Football Playoffs. It’ll be against an all too familiar foe in the No. 1 seed Dell Rapids Quarriers.
This game features the last two champions in 11A. Madison gave Dell Rapids their most recent playoff loss and regular season loss. The last regular season loss came back on Oct. 8, 2021 when the Bulldogs won 35-7. The last time these two met in the playoffs was Nov. 15, 2021 in the Semifinals. The Bulldogs came out on top 38-28 en route to their fourth championship in eight seasons with a shutout of Milbank 31-0 in the championship game.
Since that playoff loss, the Quarriers haven’t lost a game and are on a 21 game winning streak.
The most recent meeting between the two teams was in week one this season. The reigning champions in 11A very much still looked the part in their 44-13 victory over Madison.
The first play of the game by the Quarriers set the tone for the game, with a carry from running back Mason Stubbe (stoo-bee) that he took to the house for 73 yards seemingly untouched. Which was just one of his three TDs in the game. The Bulldogs did answer with an impressive touchdown drive of its own going 12 plays and 68 yards downfield in just over five minutes. Afterwards, instead of a nice back-and-forth, it became all Dell Rapids and they took over the game.
This time around, the Bulldogs have a better chance of sustainability. They turned their season around and have a totally different defense than what took the field in week one. Madison is now riding a winning streak of their own at three games.
The Quarriers return the same threats to the Bulldogs as earlier in the year. Dell Rapids will lead again with their run duo which saw 300 yards on the ground in week one. Stubbe will lead the way again after a nine carry and 174 yard outing earlier this season. Along with this running back mate Cole Ruesink who had eight carries for 126 yards against the Bulldogs.
They still will have quarterback Jack Henry guiding their offense. The South Dakota State University commit only threw the ball 10 times and completed seven of those passes for 108 yards. They didn’t pass much, but when they did Henry used his unique escapability to always be able to get away from any pressure brought his way. Madison had no sacks week one. They’ve come on recently in that department so we’ll see if the pressure will rattle Henry or his teammates in any way.
Dell Rapids has allowed 30 or more just once this season when Canton managed 30 in a 48-30 loss in week four. Stubbe and Henry also play defensively and constantly give fits on that side of the ball as well, along with some of their teammates. Guys like all-state level player Treyse Eastman and Aiden Geraets.
Madison comes in with its renewed defense and offense that flourished last week against Custer. Posting their highest scoring output of the year with 48 points. This offense has the ability to score on this defense, but they must do it consistently and do a lot of it to take down the Quarriers.
Cohen Hahn, who is 42-for-90 passing on the year, had quite the day against Custer accounting for five of Madison’s seven TDs. Finishing the game 10-for-19 for 282 yards with three passing TDs and two rush TDs. Hahn will need to have a big day again to give the Quarriers problems.
The defense is a threat on all levels. Leading tacklers Jordan Pederson (96) and Eli Barger (91) hold things down defensively for Madison. Along with guys like Andrew Comes who has seven interceptions on the year in the secondary and their monster defensive line.
Madison’s defense has 18 sacks on the season – all coming in weeks 2-8 only. Tyan Braskamp leads in sacks for the Bulldogs with 4.5 on the year. It’s all about the Madison defense in this game. If they can get stops and limit Dell Rapids, it’ll give the offense more chances to put up points. Which they will surely need. Madison will be without Ben Brooks this time around against Dell Rapids, but will have Cole Klingbile, who they didn’t have in week one. Klingbile is the third leading tackler for the Bulldogs and has 2.5 sacks on the season.
One thing the Bulldogs may hope to do is force more throws from Henry to see if Comes and company can get their hands on the ball for a takeaway. Barger had the lone interceptions for Madison in week one against the Quarriers.
Kickoff is set for 7pm with pregame beginning at 6:30pm on AM 1390 Dakotas Best.