Killdeer football seems to be the talk of the town this time of year, and it’s no question why. This team has been a force to reckon with; with 13 Regional Titles under its belt since 1993 and a 1995 State Title. Last year during the 2016 season, the Cowboys pulled off a Regional record of 4-1 and an overall record of 6-3, winning the Class A Region 4 Co-Champion.
By Bryan Katz
Leading the way for our 2017 Cowboys is Head Coach Lou Dobitz, who’s been heading the Killdeer Cowboys since 2009 and was assistant coach in 2008. Since his debut as head coach in Killdeer, Dobitz has had an astounding record of 52-26.
Statistically and strategically, Killdeer has always been on top. During the 2016 season, Killdeer held an average of 12.2 first downs per game, while opponents held an average of 8.7. Killdeer also showed their power in rushes, with an average of 37 per game, while opponents matched up at 30. The only statistic that opponents seem to be better at than Killdeer, are fumbles. While Killdeer has averaged 2 fumbles per game, opponents have averaged 2.1, and that’s okay by our standards.
This is what Coach Dobitz had to say, regarding his players in a stats brief, “We return some good players on our offensive and defensive lines. We have our quarterback returning and most of our defensive backs. Our returning starters and our seniors will be looked to for leadership in developing depth at each position. We know every game will be difficult and we will be fighting all season to earn a playoff spot. Making it into the playoffs will be even more difficult with the addition of Beulah and Trinity from class AA to A and placed in our region.
Offensively, we will need to be able to run the ball behind seniors Liam McFadden, Cody Bryant and Patrick Williams and juniors Michael Moreno, Payton Pavlenko, Ryan Zastoupil and Zane Pittsley. There may also be some sophomores stepping in on the offensive line. We also need to use the strength of senior, Alex Sadowsky’s arm at quarterback. We will have several lining up in the backfield to carry the ball this year: senior Cole Dukart, junior Riley Reiss, Dylan Tabor, or sophomore Kadin Nodland. Seniors Garrett LeMieux and Dawson Schmeling return at TE/WR and we expect them to catch some balls for us as well as be good blockers for us on the perimeter. Junior. Kacen Gartner will see some balls thrown his way as well.
Defensively, we will need to not allow big plays from our opponents. Every team in our region has explosive players. Hopefully we can contain them. We return McFadden as a defensive lineman, he led our team with 10 tackles for loss last season, and LeMieux at outside linebacker, but a good number of our returning team members played defensively and played well. Our secondary has a little more experience and hopefully they can help keep big plays from happening. Dukart, Reiss and Gartner all return in the secondary. Our greatest need will be to find starting linebackers early in the season.”
As stated last week, it seems as if the Killdeer Cowboys have a lot on their plate. However, that’s never stopped them before. This season of Cowboys football should be a real treat to anybody who gets to see this team charge the field.