The Douglass football team won their sixth straight game on Friday night and secured a first-place finish in their district with a 65-14 win over Belle Plaine. Douglass finished district play with a record of 5-0 and outscored their last five opponents by 105 points.
The Bulldogs regular season finale may been their most impressive performance so far as they dominated the Dragons from start to finish at home on senior night.
Senior running back Zach Dressler has experienced a phenomenal season for the Bulldogs and is one of the top rushers in the state. Dressler continued to awe fans with a six-touchdown performance, which shouldn’t have been shocking for those who have been following him this season.
Belle Plaine received the opening kickoff and put together a 14-play drive that lasted for almost half of the first quarter. The Bulldog defense stopped the Dragons on fourth down and took over at their own 34 yard line. Four plays later, Zach Dressler scored on a 13-yard touchdown run to put the Bulldogs up 6-0. Dressler went on to score three first-quarter touchdowns and a two-point conversion on just seven carries to give Douglass a 22-0 lead after 12 minutes.
In the second quarter, Kaden Pichler found Kolby Caster for a 12-yard touchdown pass to put Douglass up 30-0. Belle Plaine finally found the end zone on a 38-yard touchdown run with 1:22 remaining in the half. After a nice return by Ryan Kiekel on the ensuing kickoff, Dressler broke loose on the first play of the drive, scoring his fourth touchdown of the half with just over one minute until halftime.
The second half was more of the same for the Bulldogs, while Belle Plaine’s only second-half points came from an 88-yard kickoff return. Dressler added two more touchdowns in the third quarter and was able to rest on the sideline for the fourth quarter as the Bulldogs cruised until the final whistle. Kaden Pichler and Cole Martin both added second-half touchdown runs for the Bulldogs.
Dressler accounted for 220 of the Bulldogs 456 rushing yards, and credited the offensive line and the wide receivers.
“It’s a combined effort. Our receivers and lineman are doing great. We’re getting our blocks and moving our feet and that allows me to get into the open field.”
Much of the Bulldogs success can be attributed to the strong senior class that entered the program as freshman during head coach Kelley Sayahnejad’s first season at Douglass. The 7-1 Bulldogs have 14 seniors on the roster.
“That group has worked for four years for this moment and it’s an exciting time,” said Sayahnejad.
Douglass will face Garden Plain in the first round of the postseason next Friday, Oct 26. The Bulldogs will be seeking revenge from a week two loss on the road. The 31-0 loss is the only defeat the Bulldogs have suffered this year, and the score does not reflect how close the game was for most of the contest. Douglass turned the ball over four times, and only trailed by 14 in the fourth quarter before Garden Plain pulled away in the end. Dressler communicated that the Bulldogs confidence level is high at this point in the season after winning six straight.
“We’re pretty confident. We’ve come together as a team more throughout the season and we’re fixing the little things that we’ve been focusing on.”
“Garden Plain has a great program,” added Sayahnejad.
“Right now we’re clicking offensively and defensively, so we’re going to try to give them the best game we can.”
The two teams will face off at Douglass High School on Oct. 26 at 7 p.m.