|9/28/2021 1:24:00 PM|
Dodgers host RC Friday, Pointers open SWAL with Darlington
Even though the score was overwhelmingly in favor of the opponent and there was a continuos clock the second half there were still some bright spots for the Dodgeville football team Thursday.
Never mind the highly talented and deep Mineral Point Pointers walked away with a 63-14 win the Dodgers played from whistle to whistle and put on a good show at times doing it.
The Dodgers had control of the football much of the first quarter when quarterback Garrett Busch was using the time his line gave him to pick apart the Pointer defense. For much of the first 12 minutes the senior quarterback was distributing the ball between wide receivers Dillon Garthwaite and Grant Roh along with running back Matthew Pittz. The ploy worked until the Pointers figured it out and got to Busch for some sacks.
Busch scored the first of two touchdowns when he got to the five after completing a 15 yarder to Tarron Bockhop, a 25 yarder to Roh and a five yarder to Pittz to set himself up at the five. He then followed his blockers in for the score with 2:58 left in the first half.
That made it a 28-6 ball game.
Dodgeville first year head coach TC Smith was happy with the effort the young line gave in making the passing game go early.
"Our line did a very good job early on giving Garrett some time to get the ball out to our playmakers," Smith said. "Unfortunately we were unable to finish our drives early, but it was a very positive thing seeing Garrett getting the ball out quick and having success from our line getting it done up front for us."
He was also pleased with the guts his undermanned squad showed.
"The kids gave it everything they had," Smith said. "Unfortunately with still having low numbers and a lot of young guys behind our starters we weren't able to maintain the level of intensity we need to. But it gives us a very positive outlook for the future if we can continue to have the kids playing hard the way they have been thus far this season."
Dominik McVay scored four touchdowns and almost had five but a fumble near the goal line was recovered by the Dodgers. He scored on runs of 70, 26, 25 and seven, finishing with 193 yards on 11 carries.
Adding to the Pointer fun was quarterback Joah Filardo who scampered in from 25 and 41 yards out, Brandon Lynch who caught a 29 yard Filardo pass, Jaiden Galle who caught one from 25 yards away and 6-5 freshman quarterback Eli Lindsey who raced 72 yards on his only carry of the night.
Dodgeville got a second score when Pittz took a post touchdown kickoff and ran it 77 yards. A pass to Garthwaite went for a two point conversion.
Smith has hopes someday his Dodgers can match the Pointers when it comes to numbers and success.
"The Pointers have an outstanding program without a doubt," Smith said. "That is something that we are trying to duplicate here over time."
He was also impressed with the speed the Pointers possess, adding it was hard to prepare for that.
"Not having the experience in a few positions on defense was a huge impact on us," Smith said. "The only real way to coach against speed is having kids that understand how to use angles and technique and we just don't quite have that experience in the positions it counts to coach against Mineral Point."
The Dodgers open SWC play this week when they host Richland Center for Parents Night.
"Our focus this week is on tackling," Smith said. "RC is going to pound the football and we have to be ready to tackle. Offensively we're going to keep attacking what works for us as well as work on establishing a run game that has really been lacking so far this season.
"RC is going to bring it this week. They are a team that has the tools to win the conference this year. This is a huge week for us. I'm expecting a heavy blitz and a heavy run game from them."
For the Pointers it was an unveiling of some of the old and some of the new. One of the "new" was Jaiden Galle who worked his way for a 25 yard touchdown grab from Filardo. That brought praise from Pointer coach Andy Palzkill.
"Jaiden has worked very hard in the weight room and on his speed and agility," Palzkill said. "He has become an intelligent football player and he is truly a playmaker for us on both sides of the ball. It has been rewarding to watch Jaiden develop over the past three years. His efforts are paying off and his explosive and aggressive play are very important to our success."
Palzkill said it took time to make the adjustments to Dodgeville's early passing success.
"Dodgeville deserves the credit for having great timing and good schemes in the passing game," said Palzkill. "We were playing cover 2 and our safeties were playing too soft allowing some underneath zones to be exploited. We addressed this as the game progressed with our two deep safeties slowing their backpedal to a creep. We also needed our outside linebackers to get underneath the curl routes better. In the end, Dodgeville did a good job of finding the holes in our zone coverage."
Filardo's continued development as the Pointer signal caller also drew comment from Palzkill.
"I was very happy to see Joah settle in as our quarterback and make plays in the running and passing game,"
he said. "You could see him gaining confidence with each play on Thursday night. Joah is a very athletic young man and continues to refine his knowledge of our offense. I love his ability to run the ball with speed and physicality. He will continue to develop as a passer and showed great ability in that regard against Dodgeville. I enjoy coaching Joah and we have been blessed with a number of outstanding athletes playing the quarterback position over the years."
Filardo was six for nine passing for 119 yards and two touchdowns. He ran for 102 yards on eight carries.
When the defense settled in, the game turned in Mineral Point's favor.
"Our defense really responded to the things we pointed out as weaknesses against Lake Mills," Palzkill said about the development from the opener. "Coach Leonard and Coach Whitford spent a great deal of time working with our defensive line and linebackers on the basic of our front. We squeezed and spilled much better up front and our linebackers were better with their run fits. Owen Ward showed tremendous ability and athleticism as a defensive end. He was exceptional and will need to continue to play this way and get more and more physical with his squeezing. As mentioned previously, Jaiden Galle is a playmaker for us and his energy and toughness as a football player is appreciated by our coaching staff. Bo Hanson continues to be a great leader for us at linebacker and I was happy to see Tarrin Riley and Brendan Lynch show improvement and great play for us. I was also pleased with the play of Bodie Bossert at cornerback. He is very technical in his coverage technique and also sets the edge for us well as a physical tackler. "
Week three brings the SWAL opener for the Pointers who will test a very good Darlington team.
"We have made improvements, but we certainly need to continue to get better from this past week," Palzkill said looking ahead to the game. "Darlington is a very physical team and we will need to demonstrate our physical ability to match their style of play. The main thing we need to prove is that we can mentally stay strong in a tough football game. We need to have relentless effort and compete at a high level for four quarters. Our athletes will have to earn everything against Darlington and we are looking forward to this challenge and showing improvement as a football team."
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