YODER – The Southeast High School football team opens their 2020 playoff portion of the schedule Friday afternoon against the Riverside Rebels at 4 p.m. at Teeters Memorial Field.
The Rebels come into the game with a 2-6 record, but the Class 1A 9-Man top-ranked Cyclones aren’t being distracted by the poor record.
“We are going to play one game at a time. Everybody keeps saying we are going to play this person or that person the next round,” Southeast coach Mark Bullington said. “We are concentrated on Riverside.”
He said the record isn’t indicative of the players that Riverside has on the roster.
“They have some athletic kids,” Bullington said. “A couple of them have been out in some of the games we’ve watched. They get all of their guys back, and they do some good things. Their record doesn’t show it, but they have some talent.”
After starting the season 0-4, Riverside has won two of its last four games, including games over Wind River (14-6) and Moorcroft (28-20).
The Rebels bring a unique offense to Yoder that changes from week-to-week.
“From week-to-week, it’s different,” Bullington said. “They run some iso, and then, they will spread you out. They are probably trying to match up against their opponent.”
It will force the Cyclones to be ready for anything when the ball kicked off.
“With our new age of technology, we have six of their eight games on film, we have a good indication what they are going to do,” Bullington said. “Everyone always has a tweak they do towards the end that they like to run. We know the majority, but you just don’t know which one is going to show up that day.”
On the defensive side of the ball, Riverside has been known to give up the big play, which Southeast will have no issues taking advantage of, averaging 376 yards of offense per game.
“They give up some big plays, but they really run to the ball well. Real aggressive,” Bullington said. “They aren’t overly big, but they have some quickness and speed on defense. They will fly to the ball.”
Ultimately, if Southeast is going to advance, it’s going to come down to two things – limiting the big plays and turnovers.
“We’ve done really well, knock on wood. In the last four games, we’ve turned the ball over one time in each of those games, and sometimes, we have no turnovers. That’s the big thing – ball security,” Bullington said. “Last week it was the weather. It was cold and we had one turnover. That’s going to be key for any game from now on.”