VIDEO: Sparta doubles up Belding 42-21 on ‘Day to Believe’

Posted by Chip Burch • Last Updated 6:09 pm on Monday, September 26 2011

Nathan VanPatten of Sparta evades Belding tacklers during the first quarter Friday night at Rudness Field in Belding.

BELDING — Even though Belding lost to Sparta  on Rudness Field Friday night, the community won off the field.
The Redskins lost to the Spartans 42-21 at Rudness Field in the B Foundation’s “Day to Believe” game.
“I think No. 1 we’re disappointed about the football game but we’re proud of the school and community in helping the B Foundation with raising funds for cancer,” Belding coach Joel Wilker said. “They should be proud to be involved in something like this.”
The Spartans got the first four scores of the game, putting Belding (1-4) down 28-0 early.
“Sparta jumped out on us hard and they made a lot of big plays,” Wilker said.
However, the Redskins put a score on the board before halftime. Brady Badder passed to Scott Foote from six yards out to make the score 28-6 at the half.
Wilker reminded his team that they had come back from deficits before.
“After coming back against Greenville to tie the game and we were down 14-0 to Forest Hills Northern,” he said. “Our kids know if we can get it rolling we can come back. Obviously when your down by 21 you have some concerns. But the comment was, ‘We know we can fix it. Let’s come back.’”
Sparta got a touchdown in the third quarter to make the score 35-6. But Belding came back with a Neil McCully five-yard run in the third quarter and a Badder seven-yard run in the fourth quarter to get the score to 35-21.
“Offensively, we started the traditional Belding 10-to-12-play drives where we run the ball and didn’t hurt ourselves,” Wilker said. “We found the end zone.”
But that would be the last score the Redskins would get.
“Defensively, we gave up too many big plays. We have to become more consistent,” Wilker said.
Mike Geister was the leading rusher with 12 carries for 72 yards. Sean Brandli added 11 rushes for 58 yards.
Badder finished 2-of-10 passing for just 11 yards, a touchdown and an interception.
Wilker was impressed with the Spartans.
“I think overall the O-K Blue is a good conference, so I think they (Sparta) are a challenger,” he said. “They have a couple of good athletes. They’re pretty explosive. Any teams in the league cant afford to make mistakes. Other teams will take advantage.”
Belding’s next opponent is over on the southeast corner of the state near Detroit, as they head to Harper Woods for a nonconference game.
“This is a team that we’re not as familiar with,” Wilker said. “We have to break down what they do and learn that. Then the second thing is I think consistency is our biggest thing. We have to be good tacklers. Just more consistency at a higher level.”
It’s hard to teach consistency, but Wilker thinks he can do it in practice.
“I think the key is your practice tempo and you try to create game-like situations,” he said. “Hopefully that brings the confidence and the ability to be more consistent.”

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