Despite falling to Wichita Northwest last Friday, with two games remaining, a playoff spot is still in reach for Dodge City.
On Friday, the Red Demons (4-3, 3-0) will travel to Hutchinson for the second game in district play. The 5-2 Salthawks are also looking to rebound after a 14-2 loss last week to Garden City. Friday’s matchup will show a contrast of offensive styles when the Red Demons air raid offense will look to counter Hutchinson’s hardnosed, run-heavy attack.
“They’re big,” Dodge City head coach Dave Foster said. “They are going to put a lot more people in the box. When they do throw the football it is usually someone wide open because you’ve had to involve so many more people (to stop the run). The challenge is a week ago we faced the spread and we played a lot of man (coverage).”
On top of facing two teams with a combined record of 12-2 in their final two district games, the Red Demons will also have to play both teams on the road. After dropping their first two road games of the season, Dodge City bounced back with a 51-7 win over Great Bend in their last road test.
Foster said only time will tell if playing their final two games on the road will have much of an impact.
“I don’t know if it’s much of a factor,” Foster said. “We love playing at home but we don’t mind going on the road. It’s not like bus trips bother us. We didn’t play very well when we went to West and Heights but it was early in the season. We played extremely well at Great Bend. If we get a repeat effort like that then maybe things are positive for us.”
Turnovers played a big major part in both Dodge City and Hutchinson’s first game of district play last week. The Red Demons turned the ball over four times against Wichita Northwest last Friday.
“Our four turnovers in that game resulted in 28 points on the ensuing possession for the opponent,” Foster said. “We have to learn from that. Those are preventable errors.”
Hutchinson turned the ball over on downs three times against Garden City.
The Salthawks won last year’s meeting 48-28.
Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Gowans Stadium in Hutchinson.
By John Zetmeir – Dodge City Daily Globe