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Ithaca demonstrates big play capabilities
Ithaca ball carrier Mitchell Ricco attempts to ward off a tackler with a stiff arm as he looks for daylight. - photo by Erik Olson

ITHACA - The Ithaca Bulldogs will kickoff the football season with a non-conference battle with Cashton Friday.

New coach Chad Clary’s team will open the season at home following a scrimmage last Saturday at Wonewoc-Center.

“I felt the scrimmage went well,” Clary said. “The best news of the day may have been that all we needed for treatment was a Band-Aid for one elbow.”

Clary said the Bulldogs’ defense fared well, especially after Highland put together a drive on the first series of the five-team scrimmage.

Clary said the Bulldogs’ offense struggled and lacked consistency although it often demonstrated its big play capabilities.

“I’m sure every team left feeling they had some work to do before (the opener this Friday night),” Clary said. “Defensively, we were moving kids around quite often to try to get a feel for what is best for the total defensive scheme. I thought we did a pretty good job of tackling even though we have not spent much time working on it with low numbers and a short amount of time to get everything in.”

Clary said the offense’s consistency may have had something to do with position changes in the offensive line. “We weren’t as consistent running the ball against different fronts from the other teams,” he said. “I wasn’t disappointed because our linemen are very strong kids, and I know it will take some time to gel as a unit since most of our linemen are in new positions. Even the two linemen we have back from last season – Adam Kroning and Sid Carley – have new roles. Our third returning lineman – Garret Huffar – is back at tight end, and he had a good day blocking and receiving.”

The Bulldogs reestablished their big play capabilities as well. Clary said he was “happy” with the passing game as junior quarterback Trever Koch connected with senior wide receiver Cameron Magee five times and all went for “touchdowns."

Clary said he has received limited information about Cashton but the Eagles were a playoff team last season with a 4-6 record. He said containing running back Dominic Flock will be a key to the outcome.