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Lions and Tigers and Titles, oh my!

11/22/2017, 3:00pm CST
By Adam Rossow

Either Spring Grove or Nevis will win its first title at Prep Bowl XXXVI in the 9-Man championship

(Cover Photo: Joe Ahlquist/Rochester Post Bulletin)

9-Man Stat Pack

Spring Grove Nevis
Record 13-0 11-1
Head Coach Zach Hauser Shawn Klimek
Rankings (NFN, AP, QRF) (1, 1, 1) (7, 6, 8)
Points Per Game 45.7 31.7
Opponent Points Per Game 16.8 12.3
State Championship Apparances 0 0
State Titles 0 0
Opponent Winning Pct .580 (76-55) .598 (76-51)

When Spring Grove Has the Ball

No opponent has been able to stop Spring Grove's potent offense during its undefeated campaign. The Lions have scored at least 26 points in every game, including last week's 27-7 win over Stephen-Argyle.

Alex Folz is the main reason why.

The junior quarterback is second in the state in total offense, across all classes, with almost 3,600 yards combined rushing and receiving. He's accounted for 50 total touchdowns too, including eight in the state tournament. Wide receiver Noah Elton and tight end Sam Sanness are Folz's two favorite targets through the air.

Running back Cullen Patterson has gained almost 1,200 yards on the ground. He might be the key to the Lions success if Nevis tries to mitigate Folz's impact.  

Nevis has leaned on its defense the entire season, particularly in close section playoff games against Waubun and Norman County East/Ulen-Hitterdal. There's no reason to believe Shawn Klimek's crew wouldn't try and keep this game in the 20s or below for the best chance to win.

Senior defensive end Jack Landquist leads the Tigers with more than 100 tackles, while brother Michael is second on the team in stops. Safety Zach Henry leads the team with four interceptions, including two in last week's state semifinal.

When Nevis has the Ball

The Tigers offense isn't as high-flying as it was last season, but its still a unit capable of putting up points in a hurry.

Senior quarterback Jack DeWulf has more than 1,000 yards both rushing and passing. He was nearly unstoppable in Nevis' semifinal win over Russell-Tyler-Ruthton, combining for 359 yards (223 rush, 136 pass) and three touchdowns (two rush, one pass).

Running back Kyle Schmidt is the Tigers' other main weapon. He leads the team with 16 rushing touchdowns and more than 1,100 yards. 

Spring Grove's defense has been good in most of its games this fall. Outside of two shootouts with Cleveland-Immanuel Lutheran and quarterback Carter Kopet, the Lions have not allowed an opponent to score more than 20 points. 

Linebacker Taylor Holty leads the team with 141 stops, while fellow linebacker Zach Schneider has also racked up more than 100 tackles. Alex Folz leads the team in interceptions with four.

How the Lions got to Prep Bowl XXXVI

Section Tournament

Lyle-Pacelli (64-20)

Grand Meadow (40-17)

Cleveland-IL (36-35)

State Tournament

Verndale (34-6)

Stephen-Argyle (27-7)

How the Tigers got to Prep Bowl XXXVI

Section Tournament

Waubun (6-0)

NCE/U-H (20-18)

State Tournament

North Woods (42-14)

Russell-Tyler-Ruthton (44-16)

NFN Coverage of Spring Grove & Nevis

Spring Grove:

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Tag(s): Adam Rossow  Game Previews  9-man  Carter Kopet  Featured Content  Alex Folz