Shandon Hadley, right, goes up to defend a pass Wednesday at Moffat County High School. Avoiding the big passing play on defense is a point of emphasis this week for the Bulldogs. They take on Delta at 7 p.m. Friday.

Photo by Nate Waggenspack

Shandon Hadley, right, goes up to defend a pass Wednesday at Moffat County High School. Avoiding the big passing play on defense is a point of emphasis this week for the Bulldogs. They take on Delta at 7 p.m. Friday.

Delta another tough foe for Moffat County football

If you go

What: Moffat County High School (0-3, 0-2 WSL) at Delta High School (2-1, 1-0 WSL)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Where: Delta High School, 1400 Pioneer Road in Delta

— The Moffat County High School football team heads back on the road Friday with a tall task before it if the Bulldogs are to get into the wins column this week.

The Bulldogs will visit the 2-1 Delta Panthers at 7 p.m. Friday and take on a team that has looked like one of the Western Slope’s best in the early going. In order to contend, coach Kip Hafey figures some turnovers need to be in the cards.

“This is a tough opponent,” Hafey said. “Delta beat Eagle Valley big last week, and Eagle Valley beat Steamboat by almost 40, so we know we’ve got our work cut out for us. We’re going to have to force turnovers, get three-and-outs and give ourselves an opportunity to score.”

The Panthers present a unique challenge for Moffat County with their multifaceted offense. Last week against Eagle Valley, quarterback Cade Gafford went 9 for 12 for 154 yards while the Panthers racked up another 227 yards rushing.

“They run a multiple-set offense, and they are not afraid to throw deep,” Hafey said. “So we’ve got to be ready for that, because we gave up some big plays to Steamboat in the passing game. They also have a great power running game with some big kids up front.”

When the Panthers do run the ball, the game film shows they like to go straight up the middle out of power formations. Moffat County has moved its defense around in order to prepare for that running game.

“We’re keying on stopping the dive,” senior Sheldon Greenwood said about Moffat County’s strategy. “I’ve moved over to nose tackle, and our linebackers are focusing on the ‘A’ (inside) gaps.”

Beyond that, the Bulldogs are just trying to move on from debacles the past two weeks. After 62-0 and 57-15 defeats in consecutive games, keeping those losses out of their minds is important for playing well.

“We’re trying to get the last couple games out of our head,” Greenwood said. “We shouldn’t have lost to Steamboat like that, and it was almost all on big plays. We’ve just got to play tougher, more like we did in the second half, and I think it will be good.”

Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@CraigDailyPress.com.

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