All sports programs tend to run in cycles and tonight’s American News Game of the Week pits two teams who appear to be on opposite ends of that cycle.
Sioux Valley (0-3) pays a visit to Webster (2-0) in a Class 11B football contest.
Last year, Sioux Valley won 40-7, but the tables have turned since then.
“Last year, they were junior heavy. We had a pretty good veteran group,” said Sioux Valley coach Peter Books.
Now, it is Webster that has the veteran group and the Bearcats are definitely taking advantage of it.
“You don’t know what’s going to happen. So far, things have been going pretty well,” said Webster coach Terry Anderson.
A big turnaround for Webster this fall has been its defense. After giving up at least 39 points on five different occasions a year ago, the Bearcats have yet to give up a touchdown so far this fall. In fact, the only points Webster has surrendered at all came on a safety against its offense.
Anderson said last year’s team had a bunch of injuries and never got a chance to come together. He is quick to credit his defensive coordinator Adam Mines for this year’s success.
“Whatever he’s doing, he’s doing it right so far,” Anderson said.
Offensively, Webster had a plethora of skill people that include Reid Valsvig, Andy Rithmiller, Jared McClurg and Spencer Rausch.
However, it is the line play that has allowed the Bearcats to take off this season.
“Our line has been a real pleasant surprise,” Anderson said. “They’ve done a great job.”
That line includes Mark Meland, Chris Ewalt, Evan Johnson, Aaron Sattler, Chad Sjurson and Chandler Holland.
Put it all together and it is easy to see why Books is concerned about the Bearcats tonight.
“We knew that they were going to have a pretty good year,” Books said. “We’ve been really preparing for trying to stop their running game. Their defense really hasn’t given up much. It’s going to be a challenge for us.”
While Webster is unbeaten and Sioux Valley is winless, Anderson is not about to get caught up in the hype. He knows his team will face a major challenge against the Cossacks.
“I think we’ll find out quite a bit when we play Sioux Valley. This will be a test for us,” Anderson said. “We’re hoping that we can be competitive. Hopefully, things will come our way.”
Watch it online
Who: Sioux Valley (0-3) vs. Webster (2-0).
When: 7 tonight.
At stake: A chance for Webster to remain unbeaten an avenge a 40-7 setback from last season.
Watch it live: The game will be live-streamed at AberdeenNews.com/ sports with Will Elkins of the American News providing commentary, starting with his pre-game show 15 minutes before gametime. Elkins asks fans to email scores and updates of the games they are at to him at sports@ aberdeennews.com so he can read them during his live broadcast.