#1 Beavers bust Broncs, 49-10

Dillon quarterback J.D. Ferris sneaks into the end zone for the first of his three running touchdowns against Hamilton Friday night. Dillon All-State center Donovan Hucke is flanked by guards Carson King and Parker Tezak who make the task an easy one. J.P. Plutt photo


The Hamilton Broncs dictated terms during the first 6:13 of the first quarter in the Southwestern “A” battle at Dillon with the Beavers.  Hamilton received the opening kickoff, and using a spread offense with a short, quick passing game emphasis, advanced the ball down the field with short gains in both the pass and run, capping the drive with a field goal and in the process became the first team to hold a lead over the Beavers all season.

Top-ranked Dillon trailed all of 16 seconds as senior captain Mick Paffhausen returned the ensuing kickoff 94 yards for a score.  Dillon quarterback J.D. Ferris tacked on a two-point conversion via the quarterback sneak and the Beavers were off to a 49-10 victory on their perfect season to date (6-0, 3-0).  Through six games, Dillon has outscored the opposition 70-3 in the first quarter.

“Hamilton presented some challenges and I thought we were able to overcome them,” said Dillon coach Rick Nordahl.  “The kids did a good job of keeping them out of the end zone.”

To combat the quick passing game, Dillon adjusted the secondary with various coverages with sideline instruction.  Hamilton would get in their formation, the quarterback would bark out a cadence to get a peek at the defense, and then the team would wait until the play clock would almost expire before getting a play in from the coach and snapping the ball.

“We wanted to make them drive the length of the field,” said Nordahl.  “They had beaten teams with two or three long balls over the top each game, so we wanted to make them drive the length of the field.”

Hamilton eventually dialed up the long ball versus Dillon’s ever-changing coverage looks and the outcome wasn’t good for the visiting team.  The Beavers intercepted two throws and dropped a third interception.  On the night, Hamilton converted just one throw over 20 yards.

The two interceptions along with two fumble recoveries on special teams improved Dillon’s turnover advantage for the season to a positive 19 (24 takeaways versus 5 giveaways).

“I have to give credit to our special teams,” said Nordahl.  “Colton Riebe hustled down and recovered a kickoff and Mark Waldrup on a full sprint, had a great reaction play to dive and recover a muffed punt.  And of course with great blocking, Mick had the big kickoff return.”

Paffhausen enjoyed a big night with the electric return game score, an interception 4 of 4 night booting extra points.

Offensively, Dillon totaled 380 yards on 50 plays, while Hamilton totaled 259 yards on 55 plays.  In a balanced effort, Dillon had seven rushers combine for 186 yards and five touchdowns on 32 carries, and three quarterbacks completed 13 of 18 throws for 194 yards and a score.  

J.D. Ferris, a junior,  did the bulk of the work behind center with the three touchdown runs, a 13 yard scoring pass to M.J. Simkins, and 10 completions on 15 attempts for 144 yards.  Senior M.J. Simkins went 2 for 2 for 42 yards and sophomore Nate Simkins complete his only throw for 8 yards.

M.J. Simkins flashed some quick open field moves to gain 77 yards  on five catches.  Troy Scott hauled in four balls for 65 yards, Brady Richardson had a catch for 37 yards, Colton Riebe made two grabs for 10 yards and Tyler Van Slyke had a catch for 8 yards.

Riebe paced the running backs with 64 yards on 12 carries with a touchdown.  Jason Ferris sprinted 54 yards on two carries, and Van Slyke hit for 30 yards on 7 totes and a score.

Linebackers Gabe Chilsom and Parker Tezak led the defense with 8 stops each.  Chance Kluenser made Dillon’s only sack on a blitz and added and interception to his nice statistical line.