HELENA – Levi Wesche knew the cupboard wasn’t bare when he took over the Bozeman football program this season. What he may not have realized was how dangerous his offense could be.
Quarterback Callahan O’Reilly and wide receiver Lance McCutcheon have become one of the most dynamic duos in the state this season and lead the Hawks into the Class AA quarterfinals tonight against Helena High.
The Bengals have found balance in their own offense late in the season, but know their best chance of slowing the Hawks is keeping an extra eye on McCutcheon.
“Get him a good jam off the line, that’s the whole goal there,” said Helena defensive back Derrick Olsen. “We’ll both go up for the ball so whoever touches it first might win that. It will be a fun game.”
Olsen, along with fellow defensive back Keair Adgerson, will spend the majority of the night shadowing McCutcheon. The Bozeman senior has been recruited by both the Bobcats and Grizzlies this season and makes his living with pure athleticism – grabbing jump balls and outrunning defenders.
“Lance is a good friend of mine, we’ve known each other a long time,” Adgerson said. “He’s obviously a lot taller than me so he has the advantage there but he’s an athletic kid, a good football and basketball player and it’s going to be fun to play against him.”
“We’ve been playing for quite a while and he’s a lot better than he was freshman year when we last ran into him,” said Olsen who is also friends with McCutcheon. “He’s an aggressive football player and he’s fast, he plays just like me pretty much.”
If the Bengals succeed in slowing McCutcheon, O’Reilly will be forced to look in other directions to continue his impressive season. The Bozeman quarterback has tossed multi-touchdown games on numerous occasions this season.
“You have to be aware because they have a lot more people than just Lance,” Olsen said. “You don’t know where he’s going to throw it too so you have to be ready for the ball 100 percent of the time.”
Adgerson says Helena’s defense is excited for the challenge of facing a throwing team like the Hawks. The Bengals defensive line gets opportunities to rush the quarterback and the defensive secondary will have chances for interceptions.
“Our eyes open, our mouths salivate and it gets exciting,” Adgerson said.