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Balanced Cavaliers pick up road win over Mobridge-Pollock

Aberdeen Roncalli’s Zane Backous, left, runs with the ball as Redfield’s Dylan Murray, right, gives chase during a game earlier this season at Dacotah Bank Stadium. Backous had 262 yards of offense and had a role in all six of Roncalli's touchdowns in a win at Mobridge-Pollock Friday night. Photo by John Davis taken 9/1/2023

MOBRDGE – Aberdeen Roncalli kept it balanced on Friday.

The Cavaliers used a balanced attack to pull away from Mobridge-Pollock for a 42-22 non-conference football win at Tiger Stadium.

Roncalli coach Billy Young was pleased with the way the offense executed.

“We finally got a rhythm offensively and we were able to move the ball up and down the field,” Young said. “Other than the turnovers, I’m really happy with the way we played on offense.”

The Cavaliers, 4-1 on the season, piled up 332 rushing yards in the win. Young said it was important to establish the running game.

“It’s huge because if you can’t stop the run, then it’s demoralizing to the opponent,” Young said. “We’re a run-heavy team. We’re a run-first team. It’s huge because you move the chains and set up big plays. If they can’t stop the run, then it’s really hard to win a football game.”

Zane Backous had a hand in all six Roncalli touchdowns, passing for three touchdowns, while rushing for three more. The junior threw a pair of first-quarter touchdown passes to spark the offense and give the Cavaliers a 14-0 lead. Backous added a pair of touchdown runs and a third touchdown pass in the second quarter as Roncalli led 35-6 at halftime. He added one more rushing touchdown in the third quarter.

Young has been excited about Backous’ improvement as a quarterback.

“He’s starting to develop confidence as a quarterback. He’s been a fullback, and quarterback is not an easy position to step into and be good at,” Young said. “He’s figuring it out and he’s getting better every week.”

Backous totaled 262 total yards, with 162 yards coming on the ground. Aiden Fisher rushed for 79 yards, while Brody Weinmeister added 56 rushing yards. Fisher, James Behan, and Jett Johnson each had receiving touchdowns.

For Mobridge-Pollock, quarterback Jackson Eisemann passed for 136 yards and two touchdowns, while rushing for 56 yards and another score. Simon Fried had 100 receiving yards and one score.

Mobridge-Pollock will travel to Clark-Willow Lake next week, while the Cavaliers will enjoy a bye week before traveling to Rapid City to take on St. Thomas More on Saturday, Sept. 30. Young said the team is looking forward to getting some rest ahead of a challenging remainder of the regular season.

“We want to clean up some things with some ball security, but mostly we just want to catch our breath and get a little bit of a break in,” Young said. “We’re heading into a part of the schedule that’s not particularly easy, both from a standpoint of who we play and the way the travel works out with having to go to Rapid City and play on a Saturday and turn right back around and play Webster on a Thursday at home. They won’t be easy under the best of circumstances, but when you add in the travel and the short turn around, it makes it an even tougher challenge.”

Aberdeen Roncalli (4-1) 14 21 7 0 – 42

Mobridge-Pollock (2-2) 0 6 16 0 – 22

First Quarter

AR – Aiden Fisher 40 pass from Zane Backous (Fisher kick)

AR – James Behan 11 pass from Backous (Fisher kick)

Second Quarter

AR – Backous 1 run (Fisher kick), 7:54

MP – Mack Saxon 4 pass from Jackson Eisemann, 6:56

AR – Backous 9 run (Fisher kick), 4:20

AR – Jett Johnson 11 pass from Backous (Fisher kick), 0:06

Third Quarter

MP – Simon Fried 65 pass from Jackson Eisemann (Saxon run), 11:22

AR – Backous 29 run (Fisher kick), 1:17

Fourth Quarter

MP – Jackson Eisemann 35 run (Joseph Dutenhoeffer run), 2:09

OFFENSE: Aberdeen Roncalli rushing 53-332 (Zane Backous 17-162, Aiden Fisher 13-79, Brody Weinmeister 11-56, Kaden Larson 8-26), passing 5-12-2 for 100 (Backous 5-11-2 for 100), receiving (Fisher 1-40, Noah Kramer 1-25); Mobridge-Pollock rushing 26-113 (Mack Saxon 19-57, Jackson Eisemann 6-56), passing 14-28-2 for 136 (Jackson Eisemann 14-28-2 for 136), receiving (Simon Fried 7-100, Mack Saxon 4-21).

DEFENSE: Aberdeen Roncalli, Keegan Stewart interception, James Behan interception, Josh Schaunaman sack; Mobridge-Pollock, Simon Fried interception, Mack Saxon interception, Sebastian Oster sack, Brayden Wientjes fumble recovery.

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