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Steve Thomas / Bismarck Tribune, Published November 01 2013

Bismarck runs past West Fargo in Class 3A football

BISMARCK – The first time they got their hands on the football Friday night, the Bismarck Demons made a statement, loud and clear.

“We will run the ball,” they told the West Fargo Packers, “and you can’t stop us.”

Bismarck carried through on that pronouncement. The top-ranked Demons piled up 265 yards and four touchdowns on the ground en route to a 34-21 Class 3A quarterfinal victory at the Community Bowl.

BHS started 66 yards from the goal line on its opening possession and covered the distance in six plays, all runs. Senior tailback Ricardo Galindo accounted for all but 12 of those yards in five carries. Galindo closed the drive by going wide left and squeezing inside the pylon from eight yards out for the first of his four touchdowns.

West Fargo coach Jay Gibson said that drive was fraught with meaning.

“That was totally what you don’t want to see,” Gibson said, lauding the Demons’ offensive line. “… They just find a bunch of big 240-, 250- or 270-pound guys who are just aggressive. That told us who was in charge right away.”

Bismarck put 21 points on the scoreboard in its first three possessions. Quarterback Hayden Gibson went deep to junior Jon Tharaldsen for a 69-yard scoring strike on the second BHS possession.

West Fargo drove 46 yards to the BHS 30-yard line on its second drive, but lost control on downs. Bismarck answered with an

11-play, 70-yard march, Galindo going over right tackle for a 14-yard scoring run with 10 minutes, 41 seconds to play in the second period.

The visiting Packers got on the scoreboard on their penultimate possession of the first half. Matthew Pyle filched a Gibson pass to set West Fargo up at the Demon 27.

On first down, senior quarterback Scott Cameron found split end Brady Heisler open over the middle for a 14-yard touchdown pass. Zuheer Al-Abase’s kick enabled the Packers to cut the deficit to 21-7, but the momentum didn’t change.

Bismarck charged out of intermission to score on its first two possessions.

Galindo went off left tackle to put the Demons ahead 27-7 and then broke away for a 33-yard scoring run with 6:08 to play in the third period. That put BHS in charge 34-7 and the final 18 minutes were academic.

The 5-foot-7, 160-pound Galindo carried 23 times for 205 yards and retired for the night after his 33-yard TD run.

Galindo said the BHS attack revolves around execution rather than deception.

“We practice and practice. We’ve always been a running football team,” Galindo said. “The question is, how are you going to stop it?”

Hayden Gibson threw for 92 yards, giving the Demons 357 yards of total offense.

West Fargo went airborne for 165 of its 244 total yards. Senior flanker Jacob Blotsky reeled in four passes for 89 yards, including a 73-yard bomb from Cameron with 1:08 to play.

Senior linebacker Isaac Walth said defending West Fargo’s spread offense involved plenty of running.

“They mix things up, and that makes it a little frustrating,” he said. “They like to move around, and that keeps you on edge. … We gave up one (touchdown) early, but we cane back and rallied around.”

With the victory, Bismarck earns a rematch with archrival Century in next Friday’s semifinal round. Century downed Fargo Davies 31-28 on Friday. Bismarck prevailed 26-7 against Century three weeks ago.

Walth said it was a relief to get the first playoff game in the rearview mirror.

“Coming into the game you’re kind of nervous,” he said “… This gets you excited for the next game and gives you a little edge.”

West Fargo 0 7 0 14 –21

Bismarck 14 7 13 0 –34

B – Ricardo Galindo8 run (kick failed), 9:21

B – Jon Tharaldsen 69 pass from Hayden Gibson (Jacob Schulz pass from Gibson), 6:14

B – Galindo 14 run (Cole Olson kick), 10:41

WF – Brady Heisler 27 pass from Scott Cameron (Zuheer Al-Abase kick), 6:27

B – Galindo7 run (kick failed), 8:33

B – Galindo 33 run (Olson kick), 6:08

WF – Cameron 3 run (pass failed), 3:36

WF – Jacob Blotsky 73 pass from Cameron (Tyler Dolan pass from Creighton Pfau), 1:08

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

Rushing: WF – Sam Olsen 11-26, Creighton Pfau 3-26, Scott Cameron 15-20, Dante Genova 1-4, Matthew Pyle 1-3. B – Ricardo Galindo 23-205, Noah DuBord 5-33, Dalton Sanders 5-19, Jaxon Ford 5-5, Brayden Geiser 1-5, Hayden Gibson 3-minus 2.

Passing: WF – Cameron 11-21-0, 150; Pfau 1-3-0, 15; Jacob Hoy 0-1-0. B – Gibson 6-13-1, 92.

Receiving: WF – Jacob Blotsky 4-89, Tyler Dolan 4-44,Tanner McKinnon 1-8, Genova 1-2, Brady Heisler 1-27, Olsen 1-minus 5. B – Jon Tharaldsen 4-87, Connor Hellebust 1-4, DuBord 1-1.