By Brian Paglia
They spent hours watching film of Dutchtown. They spent a week preparing for Dutchtown. They spent four quarters trying to beat Dutchtown.
So who better to gain insight into Dutchtown's success this season than the area coaches that faced the Bulldogs (11-1), who play No. 6 Chattahoochee (12-0) in the Class AAAA quarte rfinals at 7:30 p.m.
Here's what three Southern Crescent coaches had to say about Dutchtown.
John Kovzel, Ola
The Mustangs lost 24-7 to Dutchtown on Sept. 17, a game that was close going into the fourth quarter before Bulldogs running back Mychael Brown broke off a 35-yard touchdown run.
On Dutchtown's offense: "There's nothing unique about it. There's no fancy thing about it. (Dutchtown coach Jason Galt) wants to keep the defense off the field. He wants to run as much clock as you can. I've noticed every time he gets a chance to win the coin toss he wants the ball first to go down and score, then have his defense stop you and then he's just going to grind the clock out and win 7-0, 3-0 and 15-0 like he's been doing."
On Dutchtown's defense: "They're just so unorthodox as far as scheming against you. They just do so many different things that it's hard to get your kids prepared, because they stunt from so many different directions all the time."
On Dutchtown's special teams: "Everyone knows about their special teams. Their kicker (Ryan Kay) is pretty good. Not pretty good, he's real good. He's probably the best high school kicker I've seen in the last 10 to 12 years."
On Dutchtown's future: "He's trying to build a ladder of success. He's got the middle school programs doing the same thing. I wish mine was doing the same thing. ... If you get your middle school programs doing exactly what you're doing, you're going to go a long way. Valdosta does it. Lowndes does it. Gwinnett County schools do it up there."
Kevin Whitley, Stockbridge
In their season-opener, both teams were tied 14-14 at halftime. But Dutchtown dominated in the second half, holding the Tigers scoreless for a 27-14 win.
On Dutchtown's offense: "He has an advantage, because not a lot of people are doing what he's doing. In a day of playing a lot of spread teams, then you've got to go against two tight-end and two wings, it's kind of different for a kid."
On Dutchtown's defense: "They play really good defense. They've got two shutouts in the first two rounds of the playoffs, which is excellent. But that doesn't really say everything, because that could also be the offense holding the ball for an extremely long time."
On Dutchtown's special teams: "I didn't realize how good a field-goal kicker they had until the last couple weeks. I remember against us he missed one that was 30-some yards, which I guess for him is a chip shot."
On Dutchtown's future: "I think he's doing an excellent job. I mean, right now I think Coach Galt is the coach of the year, if I had a vote in that. I think he's doing everything the right way. Every time we play them, they play hard. ... They keep it simple, execute and find a way to win games."
Paul Burgdorf, Union Grove
Dutchtown got big plays on offense, defense and special teams to roll to a 34-10 win on Oct. 8.
On Dutchtown's offense: "You don't see it but once a year. This year they've got two good running backs in Nos. 24 (Kelvin Leaphart) and 99 (Mychael Brown). Their offensive line is effective at the down blocking and the kicking and the wrapping by a guard or both guards. ... It's unique to our area. We just don't see it."
On Dutchtown's defense: "They're not giving up much. I think it's a pressure-oriented defense. They're not the only team that runs a pressure-oriented defense, but they're very good at it."
On Dutchtown's future: "I guess it just seems to be the progression that you want -- good experienced players and then you put it all together."