YODER – After missing out on the playoffs last season, Southeast High School football returns to the Class 1A playoffs as No. 3 seed out of the East Conference.
The Cyclones will travel to Shoshoni on Friday for the opening round of the playoffs.
Both Southeast and the Wranglers open their bid for a state title coming off big losses.
The Cyclones fell at home to Big Horn 49-7, while Shoshoni lost to Upton-Sundance 54-0.
However, Southeast coach Mark Bullington cautioned not to read anything into that.
“Upton had their way with them last week,” he said. “That doesn’t mean anything.”
The Cyclones will face multiple challenges on Friday when the ball is kicked off at 5 p.m., between the Wrangler’s option style offense and cold temperatures.
“I think Friday’s game is going to be whoever comes to play in the weather,” Bullington said. “It’s supposed to be 25 at game time. If you stand around and don’t play football, you are going to get beat.”
The Southeast defense will key on Shoshoni quarterback Tryston Truempler, who is one of the top rushing and passing quarterbacks in 1A.
Truempler averages 88 yards passing per game and 79.4 rushing yards per game – both of which rank in the top eight in the state.
“They have a couple little scatbacks who aren’t real big,” Bullington said. “Their bigger kids aren’t real mobile, but they are big.”
On the other side of the ball, Southeast will face a team who likes to key on the run.
“They are basically daring you to throw the ball,” Bullington said. “That could be a problem when it is 25 degrees.”
Truempler is also one of Shoshoni’s top defensive players, averaging 18.9 points per game, which ranks fifth in 1A. He has tallied nine tackles for a loss and two interceptions.
Bullington stressed three keys to victory – limiting mistakes, limiting the big plays and taking what the Wranglers give you.
That’s what got the Cyclones in trouble against Big Horn just a week ago.
“We just can’t make mistakes. You can’t give up big plays. You have to take what they give us,” Bullington said. “If they are going to give us the little short routes, then we are going to run the little short routes.”
If Southeast hopes to advance to the semifinal round, Bullington said it’s going to take a perfect game.
“If we are going to win this, we are going to have to play a perfect game,” he said. “They aren’t going to overpower you, but it’s totally achievable.”