Dogs ‘hold their own’ against strong Ponies

After viewing the video after his Bulldogs scrimmaged the Mustangs at Sweetwater last Saturday morning, Brady coach Todd Bandy was pleased. “I was not very happy, however, after the session. I felt we played much better. I think we were awe- struck with their huge stadium,” he said. The Dogs played in Mustang Stadium a couple of years ago when they faced Childress in a bi-district playoff game. The structure was certainly an awesome sight. It’s a sunken stadium, and that makes it seem even larger than its 10,000 capacity. When Sweetwater was ruling the roost in Class 4A a couple of decades ago, winning state a few times, the stadium was built. “After watching the film, I felt we stood up to them, especially after our first session,” the coach said. The two teams went 12 plays on offense and 12 plays on defense in the first stage, then 12/12 with second teamers and others before the starters went 12/12 again. The scrimmage concluded when the “others” went 8/8. Sweetwater scored twice in the first two series and Brady got across the goal once during that period. They both scored once in the third series and the “others” did not score in the final round. “First of all, I believe Sweetwater is a good and solid team for a 3A school. They certainly had some ‘4A looking athletes’ on their team. They have something like 600 students in high school to our 400 so it’s only obvious that they have more to pick from,” Bandy stressed. “I just hope we meet them down the road in the playoffs,” he added. The Mustangs hurt the Doggies with the option game where the Bulldogs are using some inexperienced athletes. “We’ll get better at that position. I think we’ll get some help pretty quickly if Lance Owens, a 5-10, 190-pound junior, who came back today (Monday) in pads after suffering a shoulder injury during the 7-on-7 season this summer doesn’t have any further injury,” he said. The Bulldogs ran their regular offense in the early going then stuck to the power game when they realized that was what was working best for them. During the entire scrimmage for the varsity team, the Dogs compiled 130 yards in passing and 92 yards rushing. Starting QB Paden Behrens threw for 86 yards while Cole Whisenhunt passed for 29 and Levi Bandy had 15 yards. The rushing game was paced by Chris Airheart with 29, followed by Channing Booker with 27, Flemmon Hightower with 19, Cooper Beghari 14 and Carter McBee 3. Receivers were Whisenhunt with 35, C.J. Villegas and Mackey Crawford with 29 each, Reed Williams with 20, Luke Conrad 15 and Jeffrey Bierman 2. In expanding on the offensive play, Bandy said the squad powered it at the Mustangs. “We definitely got better, the longer we played.” Defensively, Bandy said the coaches made some adjustments after the first series when they moved Jeremy Shields to quick tackle in Brady’s split alignment. He cited Behrens for settling down and throwing the ball well, Villegas for catching the ball, Airheart and Booker for running the ball, and Bandy and Whisenhunt for their passing. “We were surely pleased that we did not sustain any injuries,” he said. Bandy said the sub varsity teams (JV and 9th grade) played well, but mentioned that Sweetwater has a powerful group of freshmen.

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