Dalton leaves latest victim feeling Jaded and Jaided

Dalton leaves latest victim feeling Jaded and Jaided
www.waynecountysports.com

In last week’s rout of Independence in a second-round Div. VII playoff game, Dalton senior Jaden Schlabach (34) rushed for a school-record 357 yards and four touchdowns on just 14 carries, scoring on runs of 58, 3, 1 and 61 yards.

                        

The Dalton football team is peaking, and it couldn’t come at a better time.

“That was probably our best all-around game of the year,” coach Broc Dial said after the Bulldogs’ 61-7 trouncing of Independence in a Div. VII, Region 26 second-round playoff game at Orrville’s Red Rider Stadium on Nov. 6. “Offense, defense and special teams — our players really executed well.”

Simply put, the Bulldogs left the Blue Devils feeling “Jaded.”

Or “Jaided” also would be accurate in this case.

Seniors Jaden Schlabach and Jaiden Malone unleashed a tag-team effort that would rival just about any in area playoff history.

Schlabach rushed for a school-record 357 yards and four touchdowns on just 14 carries. That’s an average of 25.5 yards a carry. He scored on runs of 58, 3, 1 and 61 yards. He broke the school’s previous single-game rushing record turned in by Wayne County Sports Hall of Famer Derek “Action” Jackson in 2003.

Malone caught seven passes for 102 yards and three TDs while also coming away with three interceptions.

“We did a really good job executing and getting the momentum on our side right from the start,” Dial said.

The Bulldogs (10-2) advanced to a regional semifinal against No. 1 seed Lucas (10-1) at Triway’s Jack Miller Field on Nov. 13. The winner of that game will face the winner of No. 2 Norwalk St. Paul (10-1) vs. No. 3 Warren John F Kennedy (8-2) at Medina Ken Dukes Stadium.

The Jaden and Jaiden show

Dial said Schlabach and Malone are exceptional athletes. What’s helped them really shine is they’re continually improving their football knowledge.

“We have seen (Schlabach and Malone) become better football players as the season’s gone along, and that’s helped make our other players better,” Dial said. “We’ve showcased both of them more late in the season.”

Schlabach and Malone would probably both say they’re the Bulldogs’ fastest player. When asked who’s faster, Dial said, “It’s probably 50-50 when they’ve raced. They’re both really fast.”

Stat attack

Schlabach leads the Bulldogs with 127 carries for 1,375 rushing yards and 19 TDs. Tate Geiser has added 127 runs for 845 yards and 16 TDs.

Junior quarterback Ethan Stutz has really figured things out more and more as the season’s gone along. He’s gone 146-for-206 passing for 1,948 yards, 21 TDs and just five interceptions.

Malone has caught 62 passes for 961 yards and 12 TDs while Owen Beatty has hauled in 43 aerials for 434 yards and six scores.

A look ahead

Lucas has had an easy time getting by Mapleton (35-16) and Malvern (37-0) to reach the regional semifinals. The Cubs’ lone loss was in week seven against Div. VI Canton Central Catholic (15-0).

Lucas didn’t throw a single pass against Malvern, but he didn’t need to in rushing for 330 yards and getting TDs from five different players in their double-wing offense.

“Lucas will be a tough, physical opponent,” Dial said. “They are well-coached. We will have to make some plays.”

Aaron Dorksen can be emailed at aarondorksen24@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AaronDorksen.


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