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Bulldogs claim district title

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Kicker Ben Krambeer flexed his leg in MFL MarMac’s 34-0 win at Central Springs on Oct. 13. He completed three of four field goals for 30, 32 and 42 yards. The latter—which he hit in the rain—shattered the MFL MarMac school record of 37 yards. (Times-Register file photo)

By Audrey Posten, Times-Register

 

The MFL MarMac football team is the Class 1A - District 3 champion. A 34-0 victory at Central Springs on Oct. 13, paired with a Dike-New Hartford win over Denver, clinched the title—the Bulldogs’ second straight.

 

“To win this district—what’s being called the ‘District of Doom’—is something to be proud of,” said head coach Dan Anderson. “We’ve gone through a lot to get here. We had the one loss to Sumner-Fredericksburg, but we’ve really taken care of business since then.”

 

Taking care of business included another dominant defensive performance against the one-win Panthers. The Bulldogs forced three turnovers, with a fumble recovery by Keith Anderson and two interceptions by Brandon Christofferson, while holding Central Springs to just 75 yards of total offense.

 

The defensive reserves kept the Panthers out of the end zone after taking over in the second half.

 

“They weren’t intimidated. They solidified some depth and preserved the shutout,” Anderson said. 

 

One of the standouts was defensive lineman Dylan Jones, who recorded a team-high 7 total tackles, including a pair of tackles for loss. Bryce Diehl racked up 5.5 tackles and had a sack, while Brayden Gordon added 5 tackles, Carver Blietz-Bentien 4.5 and K. Anderson 4.

 

The Bulldog offense, meanwhile, put up 309 yards, 248 of which came on the ground. Running back Wyatt Powell carried the ball 10 times for 128 yards and a touchdown and fullback Quinn McGeough totaled 68 yards and a touchdown on five attempts. 

 

A trio of MFL MarMac quarterbacks completed six of nine passes. That included a 2-5 effort for 21 yards and a touchdown by starter Blietz-Bentien. Elias Hatt was a perfect 3-3 for 37 yards, and Wesley Corlett completed a 3-yard pass.

 

Sawyer Keehner hauled in a 26-yard catch, and Bryce Radloff had a 17-yard reception. Christofferson scored a receiving touchdown.

 

“We could have put more points on the board, but it was a nasty night and we fumbled some snaps,” Anderson said.

 

Some stalled drives allowed kicker Ben Krambeer to flex his leg. He completed three of four field goals for 30, 32 and 42 yards. The latter—which he hit in the rain—shattered the MFL MarMac school record of 37 yards.

 

“That was a great opportunity to get some kicking in during a real game situation,” Anderson said. “That will be a huge weapon to have in the playoffs when points are harder to come by.”

 

Although admittedly not MFL MarMac’s best game this year, “it was a convincing win,” Anderson stated. “It was nice to get everyone in the game. Everyone contributed.”

 

Even more exciting for the Bulldogs was discovering a few minutes after their own game was over that Dike-New Hartford had defeated Denver. The teams were tied at halftime, then the Wolverines scored in the fourth quarter and fended off a late-game Cyclone threat.

 

“That was a thrilling way to win the district title,” Anderson said. 

 

First-seeded MFL MarMac, now 7-1 overall and ranked fourth in Class 1A, will take on fourth seed Hudson in the playoff opener in Monona on Friday, Oct. 20. The Pirates are 5-3 after battling it out in their own tough district, which includes the top-ranked Class 1A team, Grundy Center, as well as number seven Columbus Catholic, Waterloo. 

 

“The state didn’t do us any favors. You don’t usually see a lot of four seeds with a winning record,” Anderson said. “They’re a solid football team. They’re balanced—can run and throw. It’s hard to tell how they will defend us.”

 

“But we’re going to come out and play fast and physical,” the coach continued. “This will only make us tougher.”

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