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Cardinals look to fix mistakes versus Brainerd

In their upcoming game Friday against Brainerd, the Alexandria football team hopes to fix mistakes that have led to a 0-2 start this season.

Two things that head coach Mike Empting will look for in Brainerd this Friday is for the Cardinals to limit turnovers and costly penalties. The offense had little trouble moving the ball in their first two games but turnovers have hurt some of their chances for touchdowns.

"They've realized that turning the ball over and getting silly penalties at critical times are not the mark of teams that are successful," Empting said.

The Cardinals are not going to change much for this Friday's game in their offensive game plan.

"We're going to stick with the offensive game plan that's been working," Empting said.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Cardinals have been preparing for Brainerd's run-heavy offense. Empting said the Cardinals have done a good job in their first two games to get into good positions on defense.

"We've just got to do a better job getting them on the ground," Empting said.

Brainerd is coming into the game 2-0 after beating Fergus Falls and Willmar. Their game at Fergus Falls was a 72-14 blowout win and their second game at Willmar was a 21-7 victory.

Empting expects this Friday's game to be close between Alexandria and Brainerd.

"They're very well coached, a very solid team," Empting said. "Every year we know what we are going to get with Brainerd. They're going to come with a power running game; they want to run the ball first. They'll throw it as much as they need to keep us honest."

Empting said he expects the outcome of Friday's game to come down to the team that can limit turnovers and create plays on special teams.

"I think it's going to be a good challenge for us at this point of the season for us to see where we are at," Empting said. "It's been an excellent week of practice. The kids have responded well to the rough start we've had."

The game in Brainerd is scheduled for a 7 p.m. kickoff on Friday.

Blaze Fugina

Blaze Fugina is the sports editor of the Woodbury and South Washington County Bulletin newspapers. Previously, Blaze worked as a sports editor for the Pierce County Herald and a sports reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in May of 2011. You can follow Blaze on Twitter at @BlazeFugina.

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