The Beulah Miners are one of the top teams in the state, and they have more experience than nearly every one else in Class AA after making a state championship appearance last season. After falling short in the Dakota Bowl, the Miners are approaching this year with a new mindset.
“Last year we had hope. This year we have expectations,” head coach Jim Dooley said. “I think that’s one thing that we have going as far as we did last year that maybe that was a little unexpected, but now that we did that we’d kind of like to get another shot and maybe finish the job this time.”
The Miners are well on their way to earning another shot at the playoffs. They are 3-1 on the season, and are well rounded. On the offensive side, they average 37 points per game. Ten players had carries in the first game of the season alone.
“It’s almost fairly even the amount of carries they’ll get, so it’s nice having a strong stable of guys who can contribute,” Dooley said.
“I don’t think any of us are really selfish about who gets the ball as long as we get yards, score touchdowns, win as a team we’re all happy about it,” senior Nathan Battest said.
On the defensive side, the Miners allow less than 11 points per game.
“I really like our linebacker spots with Trapper Skalsky at middle, Aaron Ripplinger and Carson Weigum,” senior Jacob Klaudt said. “I think our backers are tough, they get down hill and they play smart and fast. That’s a real focal point of our defense.”
The Miners are relying on some underclassmen in the trenches, a place head coach Jim Dooley says the team needs production out of, leaning on his seniors to bring them along.
“I always like pushing them in practice, making sure they’re going the hardest they can,” Klaudt said. “Also, quizzing them making sure they know our offense and understand what we’re trying to accomplish. I think those are the two big things I do to try to get the younger guys ready.”
Beulah has it’s toughest test of the season ahead, but that doesn’t deter their expectation to win.
The Miners travel to take on No. 1 ranked St. Mary’s on Friday.