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Football: Osakis takes care of Crookston in season opener

The Osakis Silverstreaks jumped on the Crookston Pirates early with a well-balanced attack in its 35-13 win at home on Thursday.

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Osakis senior Tyson Hagedon (21) breaks off a big run during the first quarter of Osakis' win over the Crookston Pirates on Sept. 1, 2022. Hagedon scored two touchdowns in the team's 35-13 win.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press
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OSAKIS- The Osakis football team started things off on the right foot for the third season in a row. Osakis (6AA) defeated the Crookston Pirates (8AA) 35-13 on Thursday in a Midwest (White) District battle and did so with a well-balanced offensive attack.

The Silverstreaks built a 22-point lead early as they led 28-6 heading into halftime.

“Every time heading into week one, you have a bunch of new guys at new positions. To come out and execute in the first half and have a big lead at halftime is really all you can hope for,” Osakis head coach Bill Infanger said. “To see some of these young guys come out, play hard and execute and deal with their nerves and get a ‘W’ was exciting to see.”

The Osakis backfield did work on Thursday as junior fullback/linebacker Drew Imdieke and senior running back/strong safety Tyson Hagedon both found the end zone twice.

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The Osakis offense celebrates in the end zone after Tyson Hagedon scores a touchdown late in the first half in a 35-13 win over Crookston on Sept. 1, 2022.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

“We’ve got a lot of experience in our backfield,” Infanger said. “Tyson Hagedon is a senior running back who had a nice long run for us on our second possession and he kind of got us going there. Then you’ve got Drew at fullback. He’s a load to bring down, and he’s a tough, physical kid. We’ve got some speed and some power there too. And then we’ve got Wyatt Sell and Gaven Cimbura at our wing backs. We feel really blessed and talented at those back positions. And we're thankful to have those guys, and they looked good.”

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Imdieke rushed for over 600 yards last season and scored 18 touchdowns on the ground while Hagedon rushed for over 1,000 yards and six touchdowns. Both of Imdieke’s touchdowns came on short runs, including the game's first touchdown late in the first quarter.

“It felt good, but my teammates put in a lot of the work to get me in,” Imdieke said.

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Osakis' Drew Imdieke extends the ball for a gain during Osakis' season-opening win over Crookston on Sept. 1, 2022.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

Hagedon caught a screen pass from junior quarterback/cornerback Kyle Mages and ran it in from 19 yards out at the end of the first half.

That was Kyle Mages’s second touchdown of the game, as his first was a 31-yard dart caught by his brother, tight end/free safety Grant Mages, at the end of the first quarter.

“Kyle Mages is back for us and threw for over 1,000 yards last season and he’s looking to improve,” Infanger said.

Kyle Mages was voted as the team’s offensive MVP for the 2021 season.

Osakis was moving the ball early but fumbled it on the first possession of the game, leaving Crookston with the ball near midfield to begin its first drive.

“I think we had a little bit of momentum. We were moving the ball, we'd picked up a couple of first downs, and then we put the ball on the ground,” Infanger said. “But then the defense came right out and got the ball right back for us. That was key.”

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The Silverstreaks kept the Pirates’ offense in check for most of the game except for a 75-yard touchdown run by senior running back/linebacker Ethan Boll and a long drive at the end of the game that was capped off by a 1-yard rushing touchdown by Boll.

“They’ve got a big, big fullback in Ethan Boll who is really hard to bring down,” Infanger said. “I thought, for the most part, we tackled him pretty well and kept him from getting north and south, with the exception of the long run in the first half. I thought the guys regrouped after that. And they tried that same play a couple of times in the second half, and our guys made adjustments and we were able to get him down. We were really aggressive on the defensive side of the ball. We put a lot of pressure on their quarterback, and I thought we were able to contain him and kept him from getting out of the pocket.”

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Crookston's Conner Hanson gets stonewalled by a herd of Osakis defenders during the team's season-opening win over Crookston on Sept. 1, 2022.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

The overall versatility of the backfield is something that the Silverstreaks view as one of their biggest strengths.

“It’s nice being able to run so many different plays, and they (opponents) don’t know what’s coming,” Imdieke said.

Osakis is looking to use its versatility on offense to its advantage while the offensive line continues to grow.

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Junior quarterback Kyle Mages (11) threw for two touchdowns in Osakis' season-opening win over the Crookston Pirates on Sept. 1, 2022.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

“I think we saw some good things. We were able to run the ball when we wanted to, and we were able to give Kyle some time to throw the ball,” Infanger said about the offensive line play. “There were some execution things and assignment things that we missed, but for the first night, we're happy with it overall. Those guys did a great job.”

The Silverstreaks beat the Pirates 27-0 in the 2021 season-opener. In the 2021 regular season, Osakis went 7-1, with the lone loss coming to Perham by one point.

Osakis is looking to have a similar kind of year this year.

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“I think we just have to keep getting better every week. We can't just be happy with where we're at,” Infanger said. “Now we have to understand that there are big games on our schedule ahead of us, and we got to get better every week because we know it’s not going to be easy.”

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Osakis' Gaven Cimbura returns the game-opening kickoff in Osakis' season opener against the Crookston Pirates on Sept. 1, 2022.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

The Silverstreaks are back at home again on Friday, Sept. 9, against the Hawley Nuggets at 7 p.m. Hawley begins its season on Friday, Sept. 2, against Pillager.

Crookston - 0 6 0 7 - 13

Osakis - 13 15 7 0 - 35

SCORING SUMMARY -

1st - OSAKIS - Drew Imdieke 1-yd run, 4:25 (7-0 Osakis); OSAKIS - Kyle Mages 31-yard pass to Grant Mages, 0:05 (13-0; Missed PAT, Osakis)

2nd - OSAKIS - Drew Imdieke 4-yd run, 3:32 (made 2-pt conversion, Hagedon 2-yd run, 21-0 Osakis); CROOKSTON - Ethan Boll 75-yd run, 2:21 (Missed PAT, 21-6 Osakis); OSAKIS -- Kyle Mages 19-yard pass to Tyson Hagedon, 0:17 (28-6 Osakis)

3rd - OSAKIS - Tyson Hagedon 4-yd run, 4:43 (35-6 Osakis)

4th - CROOKSTON - Ethan Boll 1-yd run, 1:06 (35-13 Osakis)

Sam Stuve covers a variety of sports in the Douglas County area. He also is assigned to do some news stories as well.
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