In A Battle Of Defense, Vale Wins Over Baker

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John L. Braese

BAKER – Football fans of defense, long, extended drives and timely forced turnovers should have been in Baker on Friday, Sept. 15. Offensive fans looking for points on the board from both teams and breakout moves due to defensive letdowns were better staying at home as the 3A Vale Vikings took a close 8-7 victory over the 4A Baker Bulldogs in non-league football action.

“For us to hold a team like Baker and with their talent to seven points is impressive,” said Vale coach Jeff Aldred. “Our defense played lights out.”

Vale’s lone score came in the third quarter after a 92-yard drive burning up the clock for most of the quarter. A pass from Colten Stepleton to Skyler Cade was the lone score for the Vikings. In a gut check move and later found to be the game decision, Aldred opted for a two-point conversion, letting Kase Schaffeld use his size for the points after.

  • Looking at the stats from the two teams, the leaders were the officials’ flags as the two teams combined for 21 penalties for 170 yards.
  • The Vikings were able to move the ball up and down the field only to stall inside the red zone.
  • Baker quarterback Paul Hobson, an Eastern Oregon University recruit, is special. The senior was 18-for-32 passing for 252 yards and no interceptions while throwing against his body cross field numerous times. Against Vale, Hudson Spike was Hobson’s favorite target, catching seven passes for 127 yards, an average of 18.1 yards per catch. Even with those numbers, Spike’s future may be in his left foot as the kicker missed a 40-yard field goal attempt, but not by much.
  • For the Vikings, Kase Schaffeld can now claim a 100-yard game as he handled the ball 20 times versus Baker. Stepleton ended the night 11-for-25 passing for 177 yards and one pick. Schaffeld added to his 100 yards rushing with 54 yards receiving and Cade, while claiming the lone score of the game, had 70 receiving yards on four catches.

“Our offense was a touch off tonight,” Aldred admitted. “I like how we responded even with all the negatives that kept coming at us.”

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