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Fargo South holds on to beat rival North in the rain

FARGO-It was rainy, it was muddy and Fargo North was across the field. It was exactly how Fargo South's football team likes it."We always say it's Bruin weather," South senior running back and linebacker Victor Isaak said. "We love the rain, and ...

Tanner Beaton of South escapes a defender to make a touchdown run against North during their football game Friday, Sept. 15, 2017, at Fargo South. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor
Tanner Beaton of South escapes a defender to make a touchdown run against North during their football game Friday, Sept. 15, 2017, at Fargo South. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

FARGO-It was rainy, it was muddy and Fargo North was across the field. It was exactly how Fargo South's football team likes it.

"We always say it's Bruin weather," South senior running back and linebacker Victor Isaak said. "We love the rain, and we love playing in those tough conditions. We always try to stay focused no matter what the conditions are."

South continued its recent dominance over North in the rivalry, holding off the Spartans 14-6 on Friday, Sept. 15, in Eastern Dakota Conference play. It was South's 16th win over North in the past 17 games.

"We definitely circle it on our schedules," South quarterback Tanner Dubois said. "It's been such a tradition, biggest rivalry around for us. It just feels good to get the 'W' no matter the score. We're not satisfied with the score, but a win is a win."

Friday's win was the sixth straight over North for South, but by far the closest. The average score of the previous five was 48-10. On Friday, North was 12 yards away from potentially tying the game.

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"We're getting closer," North coach Adam Roland said. "At the end of the game, they've gotten us, but we've been inching away and getting our guys to believe. What we talk about is the little-brother syndrome where you don't believe that you can beat them. Played a little bit like that tonight. When we decided to play we could play with them. They got us on a couple things, but, holy cow, we had them. We had opportunities."

South (4-0) scored on its opening drive, marching 69 yards on nine plays. The Bruins converted three third downs on the drive thanks in large part to Dubois. He found Kaleb Johnson for a 12-yard gain on third-and-8, Tanner Beaton for 40 yards on third-and-11, and broke two tackles and scrambled for a five-yard touchdown run on third-and-goal to put the Bruins up 7-0.

"No matter what is in the past, we love to get it done against North," Dubois said.

Rain came pouring down late in the first quarter and held steady throughout the half, leaving both teams a bit lost on offense. The weather really bit the Spartans (2-2) late in the second. A bad snap on the punt left North's Chandler Ibach in no-man's land. Dawson Weisenberger jumped on Ibach for the tackle and South had the ball at the North 9-yard line. Isaak went untouched for the 9-yard touchdown run on the next play and the Bruins took a 14-0 lead into halftime.

"I've been involved in some good rivalries and this ranks up there with it," said first-year South coach Tyler Kosel. "Hats off to them tonight. They came out and played extremely well. They got a very good football team. It was a lot fun to be involved with. We're excited for future years to play that team across town."

North wasted little time in the second half, scoring on the opening drive in less than two minutes. Passes of 22 and 24 yards from Hyatt Martineau to Cameron Blazek and Griffen Carlson, respectively, set up a Peyton Fisher 10-yard touchdown. A bad snap on the kick attempt for the extra point left South with a 14-6 lead.

North got to the South 12-yard line with just over six minutes remaining, but Ibach couldn't keep his feet in bounds on Martineau's pass. South took the clock down to 2:17 on the ensuing possession and kicked the ball to the North 33. Jimmie Gbalazeh came up with an interception on North's first play, and South ran out the clock with four run plays.

"We take them very seriously," said Isaak, who finished with 88 yards on 24 carries. "We know if we slack in practice they're going to come and get us just like they did in 2011."

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N 0 0 6 0--6

S 7 7 0 0--14

S-Dubois 5 run (Breyer kick)

S-Isaak 9 run (Breyer kick)

N-Fisher 10 run (kick failed)

Related Topics: FOOTBALL
Murphy has covered sports in Chicago, Minnesota and North Dakota since 2009, working for The Forum since 2012. Contact: cmurphy@forumcomm.com or 701-241-5548
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