A game with huge playoff implications plays out on the Dakota CW Friday night between Shiloh Christian and Buelah. The Skyhawks looking to avenge a loss from a year ago, hoping that a change in tempo can put them on the fast track towards a home game in the postseason.

The Skyhawks are ramping up the pressure, especially on the offensive side of the ball, a high-paced attack that is creating maximum opportunities for the many skill players on this Shiloh team.

“We have a lot of guys that can do a lot of things when they have the ball in their hands,” says HC Funnon Barker. “So we thought, what can we do that can create some opportunities for everybody? And for us, our philosophy is to try and get the athlete the ball in their hands and see what they can do with it.”

Shiloh had to bounce back quickly after a tough loss to Dickinson Trinity a few weeks ago. This team is now with some momentum after two straight wins.

“They were some really great teams and we prepared well for them with some good weeks at practice and film study,” says QB Joey Desir. “Proud of how we learned from Dickinson to keep fighting to the end and with Bowman we had a game to the end.”

Funnon Barker is seeing the leadership from his quarterback Joey Desir, the extra study time and the work away from the field has led to a player motivated to get better.

“Coming into senior year, I want to make it special,” says Desir. “So I’m just trying to do everything I can from film to be on the field. Just being a leader. I want to do everything I can to make this team successful and be as good as we can be.”

As for the Miners coming to town, this will be another tough test for a top-tier defense.

“We have to have a great game from our entire defensive line,” says Barker. “I think that if those guys are really holding their ground and not get pushed around, and we can stay sought up front, we force Beulah to go to some things that they don’t like to do all the time.”

It’s the same story as a year ago, 5-1 going up against Beulah, Shiloh losing that game, and eventually going on the road in the playoffs, a first-round exit to DLB. To avoid a repeat of history, they have to beat the Miners for the first time in program history.

“It’s huge for us to have a playoff game at home,” says Desir. “Because we know home field advantage is good to have. Our crowd, to not be in a bus even, it’s just awesome to be at home because we’re comfortable with it. I think that we’re just able to fly around out here.”