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DIETRICH — The Dietrich High School football team hosted North Gem Friday night in first round football playoff action. The Blue Devils held off a second half comeback to defeat the Cowboys 40-20 and move on to the quarterfinal round.

With four touchdowns in the first twelve minutes, it was all Dietrich early. A pair of TDs from sophomore running back Raygn Robertson and one each from Tel and Kade Shaw set the Blue Devils up with 26-0 lead early in the second quarter.

Dietrich’s stout defensive play kept the Cowboys out of the end zone nearly the entire first half. Senior Lon Page, moving from defensive end to nose tackle for the first time this season, was instrumental in bottling up North Gem’s mobile quarterback in the early going.

“I played that position last year, so it wasn’t all that new to me,” Page said, “but I’m happy to step in where I was needed.”

North Gem finally found its footing late in the second quarter, driving 71 yards in 16 plays for its first score of the night. Any hopes of a change in momentum, however, were dashed on Dietrich’s next play from scrimmage. Junior quarterback Andy Power hit Kade Shaw in the left flat, and Shaw streaked 65 yards to score as the half expired to keep the Blue Devils’ lead at four scores.

In the third quarter, the momentum did shift in North Gem’s favor as the Cowboys took advantage of Blue Devil miscues to set up a short drive for a touchdown. On minute later North Gem blocked a Dietrich punt and fell on the ball in the end zone for another score, cutting the Blue Devils’ lead to two scores.

The Cowboys had a chance to cut the lead to a single score early in the fourth quarter with a first and goal from the 7-yard line. On second down, Kade Shaw stepped in front of a North Gem receiver for an interception in the end zone to end the drive.

Two minutes later, Shaw took a 9-yard pass from Power across the goal line to extend the Blue Devils’ lead.

“It was intense,” said Shaw. “We kind of lost the momentum in the third quarter, but we got it back, and we’re moving on.”

Shaw ended the Cowboys’ hopes once and for all with just over two minutes remaining in the game, when he picked off another pass in the end zone to seal the victory.

“Kade is just a flat all-around good athlete, and he saved us twice. Two interceptions that were crucial down here in the end zone,” said head coach Rick Astle. “He has a nose for the football, and he can do it all. He can hit, he can tackle, he can run.”

Dietrich (7-2) will travel to face Butte County next week.

Dietrich 40, North Gem 20

Dietrich 20 12 0 8 — 40

North Gem 0 6 14 0 — 20

First quarter

D — Tel Shaw pass from Andy Power

D — Raygn Robertson run

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D — Kade Shaw run

Second quarter

D — Robertson 81 pass from Power (run failed) 9:45

NG — James Rindlisbaker 1 run (run failed) 0:21

D — Shaw 65 pass from Power (run failed) 0:00

Third quarter

NG — Nathan Christensen 20 pass from Dawson Barfuss (Chance Williams pass from Barfuss) 7:24

NG — Tucker Swenson blocked punt (run failed) 6:01

Fourth quarter

D — Shaw 9 pass from Power (Shaw pass from Power) 6:28

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