Dutch Football “Rising Up,” Not Stopping
The Pella Dutch football team put their foot on the pedal and have yet to let up. With an overall record of 5-0, the team averages beating teams by a whopping 35.6 points. Pella has a prestigious reputation when it comes to football with numerous winning seasons, deep playoff runs, and even UNI Dome appearances.
“People expect us to be one of the better teams because of our rank and of past team’s success,” said senior Logan Heerema.
With success, pride is often a factor. The Dutch have generated quite a bit of confidence in their abilities as a team and as individuals. The Des Moines Register has Pella ranked #2 in 3A competition behind the Xavier Saints, and a high school insider website called Iowa Preps, which is ran by Luke Fedderson, has Pella ranked #1.
“All we have to do is keep playing our game and not worry about what other people or news sources think,” said junior Jake Speltz.
The Pella Dutch are known for their dominant running attack. Junior Quarterback Noah Clayberg leads the team on the ground with 650 total yards and averages 13.5 yards per carry. Clayberg had great success last year in his first year at the quarterback position and has developed throughout the offseason.
“It (the offseason) helps during the season with building confidence. Just knowing that I put in work helps me perform better, ” said Clayberg.
Pella’s passing game has also been seen more during games to spread out teams that stack the box against their power-run game. Clayberg has a QB rating of 184.1 and seven touchdown passes. Clayberg has only thrown one interception and is completing 71.2% of his passes.
“Our passing game has improved a lot. Improvement also come from the offseason throwing and working on all of our mechanics,” said Clayberg.
Not only has Clayberg been running hard for the Dutch, but junior Nathan Henry and senior Quinton Murphy have been given a majority of the touches as well. Henry has eight touchdowns along with 357 total yards. Murphy is averaging an amazing 16 yards per carry. All the backs are quick to give credit to their offensive line.
“Pella has a good running game because of the offensive line. The offensive line creates big opportunities for the boys in the backfield. I wouldn’t trade these guys for the world,” said Murphy.
Clayberg has connected with eight different teammates this year through the air. Junior Will Warner has had 18 receptions on 222 yards. Warner has caught four of those passes for touchdowns.
“The receiving crew is the epitome of consistent fun mixed in with getting the job done” said junior Payson Vande Lune.
The next opponent for the Dutch will be on 10/3 against the Carlisle Wildcats. The Wildcats enter the game with an overall record of 4-1 but are coming off a four game winning streak. Their only loss was to the DCG Mustangs, whom the Dutch defeated with a score of 45-14. Carlisle defeated the Ballard Bombers with a score of 49-14 in a game that on paper was evenly matched and looked to be a thriller. The Wildcats will take confidence from that game and get ready to host the Dutch this Friday.