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Strong second half propels Bulldogs over Jackets

by WHITNEY ENGLAND
Whitefish Pilot | September 21, 2022 1:00 AM

A surging 16-point third quarter put the Bulldogs comfortably in front of the Stevensville Yellowjackets on Friday night and the Dogs held on to win 33-6.

Whitefish was dealing with injuries and some players were out due to sickness for the game, but the younger guys filled in nicely to secure the road win. Whitefish moved to 3-1 on the season.

“We had some young guys step up and we won as a team — it was a great win for us against a scrappy Stevensville team,” Whitefish coach Brett Bollweg said.

In a low-scoring first half, Whitefish was the first to find the end zone on a 3-yard run by quarterback Fynn Ridgeway.

Stevensville got the ball moving in the second quarter and scored a touchdown on a 16-yard pass reception by Kellan Beller; the PAT was no good. Whitefish responded when Ridgeway broke away for a 57-yard touchdown rush which gave the Bulldogs a slight 14-6 lead at halftime.

“They (Stevensville) put together one nice drive and they were tough up front, but our kids just continued to fight and battle, which has been a good and consistent theme for us this year,” Bollweg recalled.

Addressing a few issues during the half, Bollweg says the Whitefish team took the field in the second half and found some new momentum.

“Once the second half started we just went on a roll and started putting it together on both sides of the ball collectively,” he said.

Ridgeway connected with Clayton Godsey on a 66-yard catch for a Bulldog touchdown. A short while later, the defense stepped up with a safety. Then to cap the third-quarter scoring, Godsey caught another touchdown pass, this time for 12-yards.

In the fourth quarter, Whitefish’s Ryder Barinowski sent the ball through the uprights for an 18-yard field goal.

“I was really pleased with our team effort on Friday,” Bollweg said. “We talked last week about playing for each other and making sure that we’re doing what we need to do to help each other out.”

Ridgeway ran for 175 yards and two touchdowns and threw two touchdown passes. He was also 10 of 19 passing for 127 yards. Godsey led the receivers with 89 yards on five catches. Mason Kelch also had three receptions for 27 yards.

For Stevensville, Beller ran 22 times for 88 yards and scored the Yellowjackets’ only touchdown.

Ridgeway and Luke Moses made interceptions for the Bulldogs, and Rylan McDaniel had a fumble recovery.

Bollweg was impressed with the younger kids that had to step up in the game. He said the defensive line played solid all night and Moses filled in well for an injured Ty Schwaiger.

“Luke Moses stepped up for us in a real positive way…” Bollweg said, then added, “Our defensive line really played well, I was pleased with that. Some new guys stepping into that position. Scotty Dalen is a sophomore who made a lot of plays on Friday. Jon Holien is a kid who came in for another injury situation… between him and Montana Cohenour made a lot of plays on the defensive line.”

Whitefish is now prepping to face East Helena for its Homecoming game on Friday. Game starts at 7 p.m. at Memorial Field.

There is also a Homecoming parade prior to the game at 2:30 p.m. in downtown Whitefish.

Whitefish 7 7 16 3 - 33

Stevi 0 6 0 0 - 6

W — Fynn Ridgeway 3 run (Ryder Barinowski kick)

S — Kellan Beller 16 pass from Gracen Trevino (kick failed)

W — Ridgeway 57 run (Barinowski kick)

W — Clayton Godsey 66 pass from Ridgeway (Barinowski kick)

W — Safety

W — Godsey 12 pass from Ridgeway (Barinowski kick)

W — Barinowski 18 FG

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