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High School Football: Brainerd finishes regular season at home

Brainerd at Buffalo to end the regular season Wednesday, Oct. 19

Brainerd against Bemidji on Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, at Brainerd.
Brainerd's quarterback Marcello Getty drops back to pass against Bemidji on Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, at Brainerd.
Kelly Humphrey / Brainerd Dispatch
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Brainerd hopes to clinch a winning season for the first time since 2018 when they host Buffalo (2-5) Wednesday, Oct. 19, at Adamson Field.

The Warriors (4-3) are coming off a bye week. The last time Brainerd took the field it received a 51-14 thumping by Rogers.

Buffalo last week faced the same Rogers team and lost 31-13.

“Brainerd is a team we haven’t played a ton except for a couple of times the last few years,” Buffalo head coach Craig Lachowitzer said. “It’s a team we have historically matched up with competitive games outside of last year. So I’m looking forward to a hard-fought physical game that Brainerd is known for.”

Last year, the two teams faced each other on the last day of the regular season with the Warriors earning a 42-13 victory in the rain.

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The Bison are led by quarterback Grady Guida, who is their leading passer and rusher.

In seven games, Guida has thrown for 1,285 yards and nine touchdowns on 58.2 completion percentage. He’s also thrown 10 interceptions which could play into the Warriors’ hands. Brainerd has picked off an opposing QB in all but one game this season.

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Guida has rushed for 250 yards and four touchdowns on 75 carries for Buffalo as well.

“They have some good athletes on the offensive side,” Warriors head coach Jason Freed said. “The quarterback is a good athlete and ranked up there with the better athletes we’ve seen at quarterback. He runs around well and throws the ball well. Then he has good skill players that he throws the ball to.”

Ty Kosek is the Bison’s leading receiver with 46 catches for 545 yards and four touchdowns. Buffalo has four receivers with over 100 yards on the season in Brody Wishart, Gauge Alsen and Zach Salonek.

“We are a spread team that will throw the ball quite a bit,” Lachowitzer said. “We will mix in the run to keep teams honest, but we have dealt with some injuries up front with our linemen that have kind of made it difficult for us to get the run game going.”

The key defensive players for Buffalo are middle linebackers Trenton Radloff and Wyatt Osterbauer.

Brainerd against Bemidji on Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, at Brainerd.
Brainerd's Damien Bentho carries the ball against Bemidji on Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, at Brainerd.
Kelly Humphrey / Brainerd Dispatch

Radloff leads the Bison with 72 total tackles and Osterbauer has 55. Both will be key in stopping the Warriors’ running attack.

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“Brainerd has a very good running attack and a tremendous running back,” Lachowitzer said. “He is a guy that we are going to have to stop and as the weeks have gone on it seems their passing game has improved as well. So offensively, Brainerd looks like a team that continues to improve so we will have our hands full.”

Brainerd running back Damien Bentho is third in the state in carries with 180 and 17th in the state in yards with 942 according to the Minnesota Football Hub website.

“I think (Buffalo’s) front seven is pretty good on defense,” Freed said. “They are aggressive. A 3-4 football team. I like the look of their inside linebackers. So it will be a good test for our kids.”

Last year, Brainerd used the passing game to beat Buffalo. Quarterback Marcello Getty threw for 161 yards and four touchdowns in the win last year.

The running game wasn’t bad either with Nathaniel Staehling rushing for 123 yards and two touchdowns. Freed would like to have that same balance Wednesday night.

“I felt last year Buffalo might’ve been our best game of the year in terms of being complete in all three phases,” Freed said. “I’d like to see us end the season on that note as we head into the playoffs.”

Brainerd returns to the comforts of home, a place they haven’t played for almost a month when they beat Bemidji 19-7 Sept. 23.

“It feels like an eternity since we’ve had a home game,” Freed said. “It'll be nice to be home. It’ll be great to recognize our seniors. Anytime you can be home on MEA to wrap up the regular season is good.”

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Brainerd has a seeding meeting for the Class 6A Playoffs Thursday, Oct. 20, and will find out who its opponent is Friday, Oct. 21.

CONRAD ENGSTROM may be reached at 218-855-5861 or conrad.engstrom@brainerddispatch.com. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/the_rad34.

Brainerd Warriors (4-3)

Offense

QB: 7-Marcello Getty

RB: 20-Damien Bentho, 18-Sean Holbrook

WR: 2-Eli Hoelz, 10-Nolan Johnson, 14-Reece Isle, 23-Dillon MacLaughlin, 81-Jake Merseth

TE: 86-Dilan Sypnieski

OL: 50-Rhyen Buckmaster, 53-Josh Albright, 56-Mitchell Wind, 56-Waylon Larson, 71-Caleb Lange, 75-Kolbie Bernu

Defense

DL: 5-Eli Wiskow, 71-Caleb Lange, 56-Mitchell Wind

LB: 42-Dylan Gross, 41-Ryan Kennedy, 33-Derron Tumpkin

CB: 11-Brandon Stark, 12-Landon Severson, 17-John Hagen, 23-Dillon MacLaughlin

S: 9-Kade Stengrim, 18-Sean Holbrook

Special Teams

K: 24-Bennett Bernander

Returners: 2-Eli Hoelz, 20-Damien Bentho

Buffalo Bison (2-5)

Offense

QB: 11-Grady Guida

RB: 22-Noah Wittke

WR: 12-Isaiah Ingram, 84-Brody Wishart, 9-Zach Salonek, 17-Ty Kosek

OL: 59-Ryan babatz, 76-Carter Tarver, 52-Ayden Gawtry, 72-Aidyn Cardinal, 64-Kody Curtis

Defense

DL: 93-Malik Winfield, 69-Carter Walker, 81-Hans Peterson

LB: 29-Jacob Cremers, 5-Ben Holland, 6-Trenton Radloff, 37-Riley Anderson

DB: 32-Tommy Chiavetta, 15-Caleb Johnson, 1-Easton Gorees, 14-Cooper Murphy

Special Teams

K: 23-CJ Fogelquist

P: 23-CJ Fogelquist

Warriors Schedule

Regular Season

Aug. 26, at Coon Rapids — Lost 21-20

Sept. 2, hosts Andover — Lost 52-14

Sept. 9, at Moorhead — Won 27-10

Sept. 16, hosts Sartell — Won 34-14

Sept. 23, hosts Bemidji — Won 19-7

Sept. 30, at Alexandria — Won 15-14

Oct. 7, at Rogers 7 p.m. — Lost 51-14

Oct. 19, hosts Buffalo 7 p.m.

Class 6A Playoffs

Oct. 28: Round One of Class 6A Playoffs

Nov. 4: Round Two of Class 6A Playoffs

Nov. 10-12: Class 6A Quarterfinals

Nov. 17-19: Class 6A Semifinals

Dec. 2: Class 6A Finals

North Central Red SubdistrictSubdistrict Records

Brainerd 4-2 (4-0), Moorhead 3-3 (2-2), Alexandria 2-4 (2-2), Sartell 2-5 (1-2), Bemidji 1-5 (0-3)

Week Eight Schedule

Buffalo at Brainerd

Bemidji at Sartell

Alexandria at St. Cloud Tech

Rogers at Moorhead

Week Seven Results

Elk River 58, Alexandria 29

Bemidji 29, St. Cloud Tech 13

Sauk Rapids 33, Moorhead 20

Team Stats

Brainerd

Rushing: 283-1,272

Passing: 62-107-655

Total Offense: 390-1,820

Opponents

Rushing: 225-842

Passing: 115-199-1,580

Total Offense: 424-2,422

Brainerd hosts Buffalo
When: 7 p.m.
Where: at Brainerd High School
Series: Brd leads 5-2
Last result: Brd won 42-13 in 2021
Twitter: @the_rad34
Radio: KLIZ-AM (1380)
Web Stream: www.kliz.com.

Started at the Dispatch in June of 2019.
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