Trinity determined to shake off defeatThe Dickinson Trinity football team walked off the field at the Badlands Activities Center last Friday night demoralized and soundly defeated.
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
The Dickinson Trinity football team walked off the field at the Badlands Activities Center last Friday night demoralized and soundly defeated.
The Titans have since moved on from a 50-13 loss against Class 2A, West Region rival Minot Ryan and will try and bounce back at 5 p.m. Friday with another region game against Rugby at the BAC.
“I just think it’s important that we react, that we respond now,” Trinity head coach Randy Gordon said. “That’s the hard part and that’s what we have to do.”
Friday is where focus comes into play for the Titans.
Gordon said the team saw a lot of its miscues from the Ryan game during a Tuesday film session, but also saw the good things it did.
“It’s important now to be positive and to understand that we have to have a whole different kind of effort, a state of mind I should say, this week and to be mentally focused and prepared,” Gordon said. “That’s the biggest thing for us right now.”
It’s a perfectly winnable game for the Titans (2-2, 1-1 West), who were riding high after an overtime victory over Carrington before being routed by the Lions.
Rugby is 2-2 overall and 1-1 in the West. Its losses came against ranked opponents Beulah and Grafton. The Panthers are coming off a 34-6 homecoming win over Bottineau.
A win would set either team on a good path toward a possible playoff berth — there’s four playoff spots for eight teams in the West Region — while the loser could be playing with its back to the wall the rest of the season.
“It’s not a must win but it’s something where we really want to get a win,” Trinity senior linebacker Cody Heiser said. “We’re not really looking towards playoffs, but we want to get a good spot in the playoffs.”
Like Trinity, Rugby prefers to balance its rushing game with an effective passing offense.
Unlike the Titans, the Panthers have been pretty effective doing both.
Sophomore quarterback Brad Heidlebaugh has thrown for 731 yards and four touchdowns while senior running back Kyle Lovcik has rushed for 538 yards and 3 TDs.
While the Titans’ ground game hasn’t emerged like they’ve hoped it would, quarterback Ben Gordon has been consistent. The senior has for 623 yards passing, 10 touchdowns and four interceptions with two rushing touchdowns. Three of his picks came against Ryan.
Randy Gordon said the Titans can’t write off Rugby either.
“In the last three years, this league has been pretty dog-gone close,” he said. “It’s been pretty good parity. There really is no line you can draw like in the old days, where it’s top four, bottom four.”
Trinity senior center Dalton Soehren said helping matters is the team’s ability to play this game in front of a home crowd.
“Not having to go out on the road after that, it’ll help having the home crowd behind us,” Soehren said.