Bulldogs drop home opener to Mountain View

Wheatland High School senior running back Ryland Petroski rushed nine times for 30 yards in the home opener last Friday night. The Bulldogs played Mountain View in the nonconference battle. Bottom Photo: Senior Maxx Meyer suffered a vicious hit in Friday night’s game against Mountain View. Meyer had his tibia and fibula both broken, ending his high school football career. Meyer will undergo surgery this week to repair the damage.

WHEATLAND – The Wheatland High School Bulldog football team dropped its home opener last Friday night to Mountain View, 26-7.

Although the Bulldogs had the edge in the stats, a Mountain View kickoff return for a touchdown and a pick-six made the difference in the momentum and in the outcome. Another factor that came into play was midway through the third quarter when a tackle on senior running back Maxx Meyer resulted in a severe leg injury as both Meyer’s fibula and tibia were broken below the knee.

After a half-hour delay in a very physical game, the Bulldogs could not gain any momentum and although they made a valiant effort on two trips toward the goal line, they both resulted in no points.

Wheatland had 167 yards rushing on the ground to Mountain Views’ 163 and the Dawgs came away with a 246 to 229 yardage victory. Other than the two long touchdowns not from the line of scrimmage, the Buffalos were held in check both on the ground and through the air.

“We had a lot of things that went wrong,” head coach Cody Bohlander said. “Some were self inflicted, and there were things we didn’t like but definitely couldn’t control. We gave up the pick-six, a touchdown that shouldn’t have happened. We gave up a kick return for a touchdown that never should have happened. Also there was blown coverage for a touchdown too, so if you take the three scores off the board, our confidence is probably a little higher and the game plays out a lot different.”

Bohlander said that the team, after graduating both skills players and key veterans in critical positions are experience some growing pains in the first two games.

“We have some growing to do as a group to execute at our best on every down,” he said. “We definitely grew from last week in Mitchell and look to make some more growth as we get our first eastern conference opponent here this week with Newcastle. This group has the potential to be really good we just need to clean things up so we can allow ourselves to play at that high level. We out gained that Mt. View team, but when we had the errors in the game like we did that lead to touchdowns its hard to win. 

“We will now have our eighth coach on staff in Maxx Meyer after his tragic leg injury. He will be a player that is definitely missed on the field because he was such a force as a player. We will have to do some adjustments to make up for his loss. He is great kid and it is hard to see a great kid lose his senior season like that. He will still be a valuable part of our program that we can rely on to help coach up some of our younger players.”  

The positive going forward for the Dawgs going forward is that there is still time to correct some things and they have yet to play a conference game.

“It’s a grind to get wins and we have to show up to play,” Bohlander said. “We had the discussion as to how tough they are and who they are and where they want to go with the rest of their season. Losing Maxx is definitely a blow to us. He’s a tough kid and a great player for us as a force to be reckoned with. He did everything that we had him do – very well. He is very physical and a true leader for us. It’s going to be tough to replace him, but we have a long season, we’ve got guys that can play, so we just have to

do some rethinking and tweaking and figure out where we head from here.”

Aric suko ended up with 30.5 defensive Pts with 3 INT and 75 yds rushing while Meyer ended up with 18 defensive pts and 74 yds rushing.

The Bulldogs will play Newcastle at home Friday night for their first conference game of the year.

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