Last Game: Hutchinson 48 South St. Paul 28
Game Recap: The Hutchinson Tigers are back into the Metrodome for the State Semi Finals after outlasting a tough South St. Paul squad 48-28. The Tigers got 170 yards rushing and 3 TD’s from Senior Tory Adams, while QB Marcus Hahn had 144 yards passing, including 2 scores to TE Jake Wendland. The Tigers used good defense in the late 2nd quarter and early in the 3rd to pull away in a tight game. South St. Paul’s RB’s Marco Freeman and Jaden Bjorkland both went over 120 yards rushing, but Hutch got 4 turnovers in the game, including 2 INT’s from Keegan Macemon.
Current Record: 11-0
This Week’s Opponent: #4 Delano (10-1)
About the Opponent: Delano comes back to get a rematch from their only loss of the season, a 30-14 loss in Week 6 to Hutchinson. Delano led that game going into the 4th quarter 14-8, but Hutch scored 4 TD’s in the final 8 minutes to win the game. Delano surprised the Tigers that game getting two first quarter touchdowns on play action passes to Adam Kraft, both from long distance. Besides those two plays Delano could never get their vaunted run game going. RB Jack Nelson has over 1,300 yards this season to lead the Tigers. QB Toby Hanson has over 1,100 yards passing over half of that going to Kraft. Delano once again features a huge line with the smallest member of the line checking in at 235 pounds. Defensively Delano doesn’t give up a lot of points, expect big plays to be a factor in the game as both teams are solid.
Key Hutch Players: We’ll shine the spotlight on the Running Game. The Tigers’ line and RB’s did a nice job of wearing down Delano in their first meeting allowing big holes to be opened in the 4th quarter. Delano’s size is one of their team strength’s, but come the end of the game it can be a weakness. Expect the Tigers to try and ground and pound on Delano.
- Contain the Delano run. Delano can pass the ball as Hutch saw in Game 1, but the spoon that stirs the kettle in their run game. Contain that and you contain a good chunk of Delano’s offense.
- Deal with the Heat. Wait a minute….(runs and checks out the window)…Oh that’s right, It may be Winter outside, but this game is in the Dome. You haven’t had to deal with heat, or leg cramps in a while. It takes an adjustment, it takes hydration…but both of these coaching staffs are top notch I don’t expect many problems.
- DB’s need to be in a position to make things happen. The Tigers were caught off guard in the first game with Delano’s play action. The DB’s made some nice adjustments then and recovered for a win. This time you know what you’ll get. DB’s need good coverage and good reaction time in case of a run.
- Keep the right mindset. Hutch’s players have been cool, calm, and collected this season. They’ve played in blowouts and they’ve played in close games….they’ve played from behind and they’ve played from ahead…and they keep the same attitude, play the same way, kept cohesive, and overall handled pressure better than some pro tream that plays in this same building we’re at. A good attitude won’t win a football game by itself…but it sure does help.
- A useless/interesting fact for you…Hutch has now beaten the #2, #3, #4, and #5 ranked team in Class 4A this season, and the #2 ranked Team in Class 3A. Overall Hutch’s opponents this season have a 58% winning percentage, with 6 of Hutch’s Opponents finishing with 7 or more wins.