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1991 Class 4A State Championship


Bettendorf (10-2) vs. Sioux City Heelan (11-1)

Believe it or not, although Bettendorf eventually wound up as the 4A state champions in 1991, as conference rankings go, they didn’t even place in the top 1-2-3! A unique situation created a three-way tie for the M.A.C. crown and because of early season losses to Burlington and Clinton, Bettendorf placed as the fourth “best” team in the conference behind M.A.C. champion Assumption as well as the two teams they lost to. However, because the Bulldogs defeated tye Knights of Assumption, they earned a playoff berth—which is all they need to make a run at the state championship. Bettendorf had a plethora of outstanding players that included offensive linemen Keith Lucier and Eric Lyons who cleared the way for tailback Tavian Banks while defensively, end Pat Bateman and tackle Jed Orgill stifled opposing offenses. After a 31-15 1st Round victory over Assumption they blasted Burlington, 55-17, in the Quarterfinals (and thus avenged a 13-15 opening-game season loss) while also putting the squash on Dubuque Wahlert, 41-9, in the Semifinals to reach the 4A title game where they met Sioux City Heelan. The Crusaders—no strangers to the title game with victories in 1975 & 1982 along with three runner-up finishes—were led by offensive lineman Dave Sudbach who paved the way for shifty running back Nick Harrington. Heelan’s defense was also rock solid and countered with a stingy defense led by lineman Jon LaFleur. In the end, one play would make all of the difference in this game.