One of the state’s fiercest small school rivalries is rekindled tonight in Parkersburg, where #7 Aplington-Parkersburg hosts fourth ranked Dike-New Hartford. Wolverines coach Don Betts says that this is one of those rivalries where it would still be a big game if both teams were winless, but having the competitors ranked does add some fuel to the fire.
Betts says the district implications does get people’s attention a little bit more. Aplington-Parkersburg won the regular season meeting last year, but Dike-New Hartford avenged that loss in the second round of the playoffs. Falcon coach Alex Pollock tells Radio Iowa that he’s reviewed both those games with his team this week.
The Wolverine defense has kept their opponents off the board in every game but one, a Week 4 win over West Fork that D-NH won by a point in overtime. Coach Betts says he learned more about his team that night than he would have if they’d won in another blowout. He says it put them in a situation where they had to make plays and battle back and that helps you later with big games.
A-P also has a one-point victory under their belt, a 20-19 triumph over Saint Ansgar in the district opener. Pollock says that he’s seen a big difference in his squad since that win. He says it was a big turning point for the team as the seniors took over and they have been a different team since then.
The Wolverine offense is led by quarterback Josh Rekers, one of the top statistical passers in 1A. Always known as a running team, the Falcon passing game is adding another dimension to their offensive attack. Pollock says that A-P strives to make the most of the times they do go to the air.
He says they’ve been efficient in throwing since the first two games of the year and they have been gaining big yards when they do pass.
Dike-New Hartford’s win in last year’s playoffs snapped a four game Falcon winning streak within the rivalry.
By Jesse Gavin KCNZ Cedar Falls