Wildfire advance to second round with statement victory

Brady Wegh had missed the final two games of the season while nursing an ankle injury, but his on-field performance certainly didn’t indicate the junior had missed any time.

Sophomore Josh Wallace (30) tosses a pass in the direction of senior Carter Honeyman (7) against the Drake-Anamoose Raiders. The Wildfire beat the Raiders 44-0 to advance to the second round of the playoffs. (Photo by Cole Benz/The Herald)
Sophomore Josh Wallace (30) tosses a pass in the direction of senior Carter Honeyman (7) against the Drake-Anamoose Raiders. The Wildfire beat the Raiders 44-0 to advance to the second round of the playoffs. (Photo by Cole Benz/The Herald)

By COLE BENZ | Herald Editor | cbenz@countrymedia.net

Brady Wegh had missed the final two games of the season while nursing an ankle injury, but his on-field performance certainly didn’t indicate the junior had missed any time.

Opening the first round of playoffs at home, the Mott-Regent Wildfire beat the Drake-Anamoose Raiders in dominating fashion, 44-0.

The Wildfire had the inside track to a bye week heading into the last game of the season, but with the loss to Hettinger/Scranton the week before, and a Night Hawk victory in their final game, Mott-Regent was forced to play the first week.

Their offense was clicking on all cylinders. With the return of junior Brady Wegh and senior Chance Roth, their attack was potent.

Wegh, usually found under center, was set outside as he did all his damage as a wide receiver. Returning from an ankle sprain, Wegh caught two touchdown passes(one for 83 yards and another for 75), and added a third reception for a total of 182 yards. He also returned a blocked put for a 44-yard score.

Wegh had a battery mate, sophomore Josh Wallace.

Wallace threw for 247 yards and two scores, completing 10 passes out of 13 attempts. He also had 179 yards rushing with three running touchdowns.

“I thought overall we played real well,” Benson said.

The Raiders had quite the lineman for the Wildfire to deal with. Senior Cordell Volson stood at 6-foot 5-inches and weighing 245, no small man. But senior Tyler Eggers, who went up against Volson most of the day, held his own and won some of the battles. His coach was impressed by his performance against such a strong presence.

With the win the Wildfire look forward to facing Divide County.

The Maroons are a team, according to Benson, that likes to run the ball. They also like to run the option play, which will keep Mott-Regent’s defense on their toes.

“We need to stop the run,” Benson said.

Benson also said that they are a very fundamentally sound team, so the margin for error will be slim.

Beson said his teams are 3-3 over the years against Divide County, so he is a little familiar with the team’s philosophy, which is heavy in defensive schemes.

“They’ll mix things up on defense, “ Beson said. “You never can know what they’re going to run on defense, he’s kind of a guru at that.”

Divide County’s largest victory was against New Town High School, a game they won 44-8. Their biggest loss was 8-40 on the final game of the season against MSL Mohall/Sherwood.

With Wegh back in the picture, Benson said he might get back into the quarterback mix. He praised senior Brett Messmer for stepping in for the injured Wegh.

But Benson also added that he is a good linebacker and tight end that may help their schemes, allowing their offense to get more creative.

“Brett did a nice job for us, we’re really happy with the way that he came back in his senior year and we just threw him into the mix,” Benson said. “But as you put Brett back on that line, he was a good tight end, you know we can do some play action pass with him, we can run the ball maybe a little better with him.”

The game on Saturday is slated for a 2:30 p.m. start, at Divide County.

“It’s just exciting,” Benson said. “This is the fun part of the year.”

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