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Raiders host No. 3-ranked GCF Storm

Press Photo by Royal McGregor Richardton-Taylor-Hebron junior running back Jaden Schmidt rushes against Mott-Regent on Aug. 27 during a 9-man, Region 4 game in Richardton.

Saying the No. 3-ranked Grant County-Flasher football team's offense is productive would be an understatement.

The Storm have averaged more than 60 points per game this season.

Controlling Grant County-Flasher's offense is the main focus on Richardton-Taylor-Hebron's mind going into their 9-man, Region 4 game at 7 p.m. Friday in Richardton.

"They are just an explosive team," Raiders head coach Travis Olson said. "They have so many skilled kids that I don't know how you keep them all contained. They are just a good all-around football team and have been playing really well."

There is one similarity between the Storm and Raiders. They are both playing in the 9-man ranks after competing as 11-man Class 1A teams the past two seasons. Grant County-Flasher is 6-0, while Richardton-Taylor-Hebron is 5-1.

The Raiders are already guaranteed a spot in the playoffs and, if they were to beat the Storm, would be looking at home-field advantage and possibly a share of the 9-man, Region 4 title.

"It's a big game and home field is huge," Olson said. "It doesn't put us out of contention for a share of the title. It's just a real, big game. It's a big game for our seniors, because it's parent's night and it could possibly be the last game that they play on that field."

Richardton-Taylor-Hebron's lone loss on the season was against Shiloh Christian (39-22) on Aug. 31. Grant County-Flasher and No. 4-ranked Shiloh Christian play during the final week of the season.

Grant County-Flasher's weapons are senior quarterback Taylor Krenz and senior wide receivers J.W. Froelich and Zackary Schmidt.

The Raiders haven't had any trouble transitioning from 11-man to 9-man. The Storm are led by a host of running backs in junior Jaden Schmidt, senior Lane Aune, sophomore Denver Colgrove and freshman Jayden Olson.

The team's field general is senior quarterback Lane Voltz.

"We think we've got some people that have capabilities, that can make some big plays," Olson said. "It's going to be a matter of who is going to show up and play hard. It's going to be a good, physical game."

Beach staying grounded during course of the season

In the game of volleyball, it's easy to become lackadaisical.

Beach's first-year head coach Shae Peplinski preaches to the team to stay prepared and ready for every single match.

As a result, the Buccaneers have a 6-0 record in Region 7 and are tied atop the region with Dickinson Trinity.

"We try to stay grounded being at the top of the region with Trinity," she said. "We are playing not to lose and everybody else is playing to knock us off. We have to stay grounded. We can't overlook anybody and we have to keep working hard every day."

Being a first-year head coach, Peplinski said it has been nice to have a veteran team with plenty of experience to go around, including having the help of seven seniors.

The seniors who have the most playing time are Hailee Farstveet, Bailey Waldal, Cydni Stedman and Chantel Fulton.

"Hailee has been my team captain and she is a very versatile player," Peplinski said. "Bailey and Cydni have both played varsity volleyball their entire high school careers. They are both outside hitters too. Chantel was also the setter last year. With me being the first-year head coach, I don't know a lot about their history, but I know this year they are working extremely hard as a team. They come to practice and keep getting better."

Beach's biggest piece is in the middle with 6-foot-2 Channa Clarin. The junior middle blocker injured her knee last year, but played throughout the District 13 and Region 7 tournaments. After the season was over, Clarin had surgery on her knee, which forced her to sit out the entire basketball season.

After spending the offseason rehabilitating her knee, Clarin returned to the court with a dominating presence. In a five-set match this season against Beulah on Sept. 24, she recorded 12 blocks. She supplied another double-digit block performance against Hettinger-Scranton a week later with 10.

"She's great to have in the middle of the floor at 6-2, because not a lot of teams have that," Peplinski said. "She has a really nice jump serve too. As far as on the team, that is the girl who loves the game of volleyball."

Dickinson High volleyball looks to continue solid play

Over the past two weeks, the Dickinson High volleyball team has played well and collected wins in the process.

The Midgets went 5-2 at the Dickinson High Invitational, swept Williston in a West Region match last Thursday before being swept by Bismarck High on Tuesday.

"We've been playing pretty well lately," Schobinger said. "After our tournament, we had a nice match against Williston and we battled with Bismarck High. We have to learn how to win those close matches. Things are going well right now."

Though Dickinson was swept by the Demons on Tuesday, Schobinger said the team had chances to take wins in the second and third sets.

The Midgets continue their season by traveling to the two-day Fargo North Tournament that begins Friday.

Schobinger hopes the team continues to improve every day.

"We just have to continue getting better that those little things," he said. "We still have a good chunk of the season to go and we just want to keep getting better."