The Milbank Area Bulldogs are headed to the playoffs! The Dawgs shutout the Tri-Valley Mustangs 13-0 Thursday, October 19, in the last game of the regular season at AB Campbell Stadium. The win secured a spot for Milbank Area in the Class 11A playoffs. Tri-Valley’s season came to an end.
“The guys played hard and left it all out on the field,” stated Bulldog Head Coach Jeremy Tostenson. “We approached it as a playoff game. The guys earned the win and the shot at the playoffs.”
The Bulldogs, with a 6-3 record, are the No. 5 seed and match up with the No. 4 seed, Todd County. Milbank Area travels to Mission on Thursday, October 26. The game starts at 6 p.m. Central Time.
Other quarter-final matchups in Class 11A include No. 1 Madison hosting No. 8 Tea Area, No. 2 Dakota Valley hosting No. 7 Pine Ridge, and No. 3 Dell Rapids hosting No. 6 St. Thomas More.
The four winners of those games advance to the semi-final round on Friday, November 3. The winner of the Milbank Area/Todd County game faces the winner of the Madison/Tea Area game.
Milbank vs. Tri-Valley
In Thursday’s game with Tri-Valley, Milbank Area took control and remained in the driver’s seat after a scoreless and tight first quarter battle. Late in the second period, Milbank Area was forced to punt the ball. A punt by Jake Karges settled the ball at the Tri-Valley six-yard-line, giving the Mustangs the long field to the end zone. They struggled to get their offense rolling, and two back-to-back penalties forced them to also punt.
Milbank Area used the short field to their advantage. With the ball on the Tri-Valley 20-yard-line, Cole Dockter sprinted ahead to the nine for a first down and goal for the Bulldogs. On second down and 13, quarterback Mitch Quade completed a pass to Max McCulloch who was brought down at the one. Quade then sneaked the ball over the goal line on a QB keeper. Carlos Padilla’s extra point attempt failed, but Milbank Area led 6-0 to end the first half.
Tri-Valley got the ball to start the second half. The Bulldog defense, highlighted by a sack by Jake Sandvig, forced the Mustangs to punt. Milbank quarterback Quade connected with Karges and Dockter for consecutive first down plays. The drive was highlighted by a 40-yard pass to Dockter for the touchdown. Padilla’s PAT was good, giving the Bulldogs the 13-0 advantage with just over eight minutes left in the third quarter. The remainder of the game was scoreless, and Milbank Area was victorious 13-0.
The Bulldogs wrapped up the game with 215 total yards of offense. The Dawgs had 99 rushing yards and 116 passing yards. Tri-Valley had 118 yards on offense, all of which came from a ground attack.
Quade went 8-12 passing to 116 yards and one touchdown. He also was credited with one rushing touchdown on a QB keeper. Karges had 14 carries for 52 yards and two catches for 26 yards. Dockter added 45 yards rushing on five carries and 64 yards on three receptions.
Other offensive standouts were: Sandvig, 15 yards rushing on two carries; Riley Gauer and McCulloch, 11 yards on one catch each; and James Weber, four yards on one reception.
The Bulldog defense was the talk of the game. Leading the group for Milbank Area was Karges with 11 tackles. Quade followed with eight tackles and one QB sack. Weber added seven tackles with Sandvig credited with five and one sack. Other defensive leaders were Dockter, four tackles; McCulloch, Brodie Holtquist, and Tanner Kettwig, three each; Jake Fox, two tackles and two sacks, and Austin Schuelke, one tackle.
Photo: Jake Sandvig.