DEADWOOD — Lead-Deadwood defeated Custer 26-6 in Friday night’s homecoming football game, played at Ferguson Field in Deadwood.
“The defense was fantastic. They did everything we talked about, flew to the ball,” Golddiggers’ head coach Kyle Kooima said after his team’s fourth straight win. “The offense moved the ball; we just made several mistakes.”
Custer started the game at its 17-yard line and gained a first down, only to have its possession end two plays later. Lead-Deadwood’s Tyler Percy recovered a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown. Tristen Fierbach’s extra-point kick put the Golddiggers ahead 7-0.
The visiting Wildcats’ next possession lasted for only three plays. Percy returned a fumble 24 yards for a Golddiggers’ touchdown, with a blocked extra-point try keeping the margin at 13-0.
Custer went three-and-out, with Lead-Deadwood taking over at its 42-yard line. Rocke Rainey gained two yards on a fourth and 2 to give the Golddiggers a first down and extend a drive that eventually spanned 13 plays at 58 yards.
That drive ended on Rocke Rainey’s 2-yard touchdown run. Fierbach added the extra point as the Golddiggers led 20-0.
The teams traded punts for the next three possessions, with Lead-Deadwood taking over at its 12-yard line with two minutes remaining in the first half.
Custer’s Gage Tennyson returned an interception 10 yards for a touchdown. An unsuccessful conversion kept the score 20-6 at halftime.
Festivities featured the marching band and flag corps, the burning of the “LD,” and introduction of homecoming king David Morris and queen Jayna Prince.
Lead-Deadwood ended the scoring early in the fourth stanza. Crew Rainey caught a short pass and sprinted to the end zone to complete a 22-yard touchdown play. The kick was blocked, and the score remained at 26-6. That stood as the final.
The Golddiggers (5-2) are assured of having a winning record for this season. Kooima talked about how the squad is progressing.
“They’ve come a long way, even going back to camp and just putting the stuff in,” Kooima said. He added Ryan Rantapaa ran the ball really well tonight and hit the holes.
Rocke Rainey played in his second straight game following an injury to open the season.
“I thought the line was fantastic,” Kooima said. “Any time you can run dives and traps up the gut, your line’s doing work.” He added the tight ends also did their job.
Turn to page 13 for more photos.
Lead-Deadwood is scheduled to visit Hot Springs on Friday, Oct. 15, in its regular-season finale.