All three games against Great Falls Central Catholic this weekend — the varsity game on Sept. 18, and the junior high and little guy football games on Sept. 19 — are cancelled.
Choteau High School Athletic Director John Shepherd on Friday said the GFCC games were cancelled because someone associated with the GFCC team tested positive for COVID-19. He said he is working with GFCC to reschedule the games for a later date.
The Bulldogs are now 0-3 overall and 0-2 in conference play. GFCC likewise is 0-3 and both teams are hungry for their first wins.
Choteau Coach Lucas Gunderson said that GFCC, just like Choteau, lost a big group of senior players to graduation and is in a rebuilding mode. He said Choteau should match up well with the Mustangs and is working hard in practice to improve their blocking schemes and defensive strategies to pressure the Mustangs’ quarterback. He expects GFCC to go to the pass game against Choteau and he wants the Choteau boys ready to defend pass plays.
In last week’s 25-6 loss to Cascade at home, the evenly matched teams battled defensively, and Choteau got into the red zone several times. Cascade scored first on a 10-yard pass play in the first quarter to lead, 6-0. Choteau put together a touchdown drive and quarterback Tony Daley ran the ball in eight yards for a touchdown that was called back on an illegal offensive formation penalty. Choteau rallied and drove downfield again, but Cascade stopped them on fourth down, just four yards from the goal line.
In the second quarter, Daley again led the team in a touchdown drive, scoring on a five-yard run that, again, was negated by a penalty, this time for holding on the Bulldogs. The boys kept the drive alive and the Bulldogs scored on a six-yard pass from Daley to Jacob Beattie. The extra point run failed, but the score was tied, 6-6, at halftime.
In the third quarter, Cascade scored on a touchdown run, and Choteau had two good opportunities to capitalize on turnovers as Beattie intercepted a Cascade pass and Daley recovered a Cascade fumble. In both turnovers, however, the Choteau boys were unable to sustain their offensive drives and had to punt.
Cascade scored twice in the fourth quarter, including converting an intercepted pass to a touchdown. The Badgers on defense were able to prevent Choteau’s leading running back, Morgan Carter, from scoring and forced the Choteau team to shake up its offense, as Coach Gunderson brought freshman Bowen Rappold in as back-up quarterback and began using Daley as a running back and receiver to amp up the Bulldogs’ offensive yard.
Gunderson said the coaches are proud of how hard Choteau’s young team is working. “From game one to now, they have improved immensely,” he said. In last week’s game, the offensive line did a good job, but the team just made a few little mistakes that proved costly on the scoreboard. “We just need to finetune,” Gunderson said.
According to unofficial statistics, Choteau posted 173 yards rushing and 41 yards passing for 214 total yards of offense. Morgan led the team in rushing with 78 yards on 16 carries. Daley had 20 carries for 95 yards. Beattie had four pass receptions for 17 yards and one touchdown. Morgan had one reception for 14 yards and Daley had one reception for five yards. Daley passed 10 times, completing six, throwing three incomplete passes and being intercepted once. Rappold passed three times, completing one.
The Badgers had 320 yards offense, including 222 yards rushing and 98 yards passing.
The Bulldogs accrued 50 yards in penalties on nine violations. Cascade had four penalties, totaling 30 yards.
Choteau 0-6-0-0 — 6
Cascade 6-0-6-13 — 25
Cascade — James Lewis 10-yd. pass to Preston Hastings. Pass failed.
Choteau — Tony Daley 6-yd. pass to Jacob Beattie. Run failed.
Cascade — Lewis 42-yd. run. Run failed.
Cascade — Nate Wadlow 2-yd. run. Pass failed.
Cascade — Lewis 22-yd. pass to Kaden Shelton. Connor Woodall kick.