The Dakota State Trojans (0-6 overall, 0-4 NSAA) return home to face the Waldorf Warriors at the Dan Beacom Track Complex this afternoon.
It’s the second round of North Star Athletic Association games for all the teams in the league. It will also serve as the last matchup in conference EVER between Waldorf and Dakota State. Earlier this season, Waldorf was accepted to join the Great Plains Athletic Conference effective the 2024-2025 season. It’ll be the 17th and final meeting between the two teams and no matter what, Waldorf will finish on top in the series as they currently lead it 9-7.
Coming into today, the Warriors aren’t as sharp as they were in the early going of the year. Dropping back-to-back contests in conference and not scoring more than 25 points since week four
They’re also a bit depleted, as wide receiver Dom Watt is not in the lineup for the Warriors on offense. He ate DSU up in week three for 150+ yards receiving and one touchdown. They may also be without Austin Erdmann on the defensive line too, as he was pretty disruptive last time out and leads the defensive line in tackles. Waldorf still has a number of guys who bring the boom on defense and their top tacklers are still ready to go. They only allow 170.5 passing yards per game on defense
They’ve had a sputtering offense through the air as of late with just 28 pass attempts in the last two outings. Leaning more heavily on the run hasn’t worked out in their favor and equated to wins.
They were close last week when Jatoviay Hill ran for 143 yards and one TD. Just one TD pass and a pair of interceptions in the last two games for quarterback Jordan Cooper. Against the Trojans in week three, he was 21-for-27 with two TDs through the air and two on the ground with one INT.
DSU comes in still looking to break the slump and get that much needed win. QB Tray Hettick returns at the reigns for the Trojans. So far he is 31-for-57 passing with two TDs and three INTs in his time at QB. He’ll be tested again this week against the tough secondary of Waldorf, but the more Hettick has gotten reps, the better he has looked. We’ll see how things hold together.
One great sign is Hettick’s connection with Michael Hybertson. Last week was the first week DSU had a 100+ yard receiver in a game this season with Hybertson going for 124 yards and a TD. That TD to Hybertson was the first one for a DSU starting receiver all season.
The Trojans defense is still the engine for this team. Dakota State ranks second in the NSAA in rushing defense, allowing just 115.8 yards per game on the ground in conference. Also with a number of players in the rankings on defense. JJ Beck ranks fourth in the NSAA with 7.8 tackles per game and Devonte Murphy sits in 12th with 5.3 per game. Caleb Dwyer is tied fifth overall in QB sacks with 2.5 in conference play and Collin Brueggeman ranks tied for 12th with 1.5 sacks in the NSAA.
Kickoff will be at 4pm with pregame beginning at 3:30pm on Jammin Country 103.