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Titans clinch home field for first round of Class A playoffs

BEULAH -- For the first time since 2010, the Dickinson Trinity football team has collected a victory in Beulah, handley defeating the Miners 24-6 on a cold and slippery night Friday, Oct. 5 from Beulah Riverside Park.

BEULAH - For the first time since 2010, the Dickinson Trinity football team has collected a victory in Beulah, handley defeating the Miners 24-6 on a cold and slippery night Friday, Oct. 5 from Beulah Riverside Park.

With the victory, the Titans secured the No. 2 seed in Region 4 and home-field advantage in the first round of the Class A postseason.

“Anytime you can win against a good team like Beulah, it’s a good win and it’s a big win, especially in this situation where it locked down a home-field game in the first round of the playoffs. That made it a little bit better,” Dickinson Trinity head coach John Odermann said. “Coach Dooley does a great job with his program and whenever we go to Beulah to win a game, that’s something we haven’t been able to do since I’ve been head coach. It was a big win, a special night for the kids.”

Responsible for all the points for his team, dynamic senior playmaker Kaden Kuntz put together a dominant showing, gaining 165 rushing yards and three touchdowns on the ground. He also caught a pair of passes from senior quarterback Aaric Knopick for 34 receiving yards and added a critical touchdown on special teams.

“He had a great game on Friday night, four touchdowns and that’s the type of performance that we need,” Odermann said. “It was a bad weather game, traction wasn’t great on the field, but we knew we had to run the ball to win the game and Kaden really stepped up in a big way.”

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Kuntz opened the scoring with a 36-yard rushing touchdown in the first quarter before tacking on a 20-yard touchdown run in the second quarter.

With three minutes and 19 seconds left before halftime, Beulah (6-2, 4-2 Region 4) cut the Titans advantage to 12-6 after senior running back Kaleb McGraw reached the end zone on an 8-yard dash past the goal line. McGraw finished with 192 yards on the ground on 32 carries. However, Dickinson Trinity needed only 20 seconds to silence the Miners faithful when Kuntz returned the ensuing kickoff 85 yards for his third touchdown of the first half.

Odermann says Kuntz’ kick return and a defensive stop on fourth-and-goal from the 1-yard line were the two biggest moments of the day.

With 8:08 remaining in the fourth, Kuntz put the game on ice with an electric 73-yard scoring rumble.  

Beulah outgained the Titans (6-1, 6-1 Region 4) in total yardage, ran 39 more offensive plays and collected 10 more first downs, but had two turnovers.

Dickinson Trinity 24, Beulah 6DT 6 12 6 0 - 24B 0 6 0 0 - 6First quarterDT - Kaden Kuntz 36 rush (PAT no good)Second quarterDT - Kuntz 20 rush (PAT no good)B - Kaleb McGraw 8 rush (PAT no good)DT - Kuntz 85 kickoff return (PAT no good)Third quarterNo scoringFourth quarterDT - Kuntz 73 rush (PAT no good)INDIVIDUAL STATISTICSRUSHING: DT, Kuntz 11-164, 3 TD; Aric Knopik 8-13; Nathaniel Jilek 1-(-3). B, Kaleb McGraw 32-192; Dawson Bieber 15-54; Tryston Miller 5-30; Nathan Battest 5-20.  PASSING: DT, Knopik 4-5-0, 48 yards. B, Battest 2-8-1, 11 yards.RECEIVING: DT, Kuntz 2-34; Matt Stafford 2-14. B, Trey Brandt 1-11; McGraw 1-(-1).Records: DT, 6-1 (6-1 Region 4). B, 6-2 (4-2 Region 4).

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