Wolves struggle in 34-6 loss
By Neal A. Shipman
Watford City struggled offensively on Thursday evening as the Wolves fell to Bismarck St. Mary’s, 34-6, in Class AA football action. With the loss, Watford City’s season record dropped to 2-4.
“We played pretty well defensively against the No. 3-rated and two-time defending State AA Champions,” stated Justin Johnsrud, Wolves’ head coach. “Injuries and other circumstances have left us pretty short-handed and we had to play a lot of underclassmen. We got to our assignments, we just struggled to match up with the strength and speed of St. Mary’s.”
St. Mary’s dominated the offensive side of the football as Bismarck had 387 total yards, while limiting the Wolves to just 120 yards of offense.
The Saints jumped out to a quick, 14-0, first quarter lead on two touchdowns, and then tacked on two more scores to lead the Wolves, 27-0, at halftime.
Bismarck scored their final touchdown in the third quarter with Watford City finally getting on the scoreboard in the fourth quarter on a 31-yard run by Kyle Cook.
“Offensively, we struggled,” stated Johnsrud. “We had a few turnovers that hurt and we were unable to capitalize on some of St. Mary’s miscues. The penalties are something we have to get cleaned up if we are going to have a chance to beat the upper level teams in AA football.”
Watford City was penalized nine times for 62 yards, while St. Mary’s had seven penalties for 56 yards.
Kyle Cook was the leading rusher for the Wolves as he gained 50 yards on eight carries, while Jaydn Ewing carried the ball five times for 32 yards.
Jarek Hogue completed one of seven passes for 19 yards and had two interceptions.
Defensive point leaders for the Wolves were Jadyn Ewing, Jarek Hogue, Kyle Cook, Brandon Sandvik and Jackson Faller.
This week, the Wolves will be hosting Turtle Mountain in Watford City’s Homecoming game with kickoff set for 7 p.m. at Fridley Field.
“The Braves run a lot of different formations and have a definite size advantage over us,” states Johnsrud. “We need to take care of the football and eliminate their big plays to be successful.”
1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
St. Mary’s 14 13 7 0 34
Watford City 0 0 0 6 6
Rushing: Kyle Cook, 8-50 yards; Jaydn Ewing, 5-32 yards; Dennis Connor, 5-7 yards; Brandon Sandvik, 7-4 yards; Kason Hartel, 3-4 yards; Jarek Hogue, 3-4 yards.
Passing: Jarek Hogue 1 of 7 for 19 yards.
Receiving: Korbin Knutson, 1-19 yards.