Game Capsule: West Branch vs Van Meter

At Home In The Dome: Van Meter

By Jason Miller  |   November 10, 2022, 1:30 p.m.

Location: UNI Dome
Date: November 11, 2022
Time: 4:00 pm


The game will be broadcast on TV and streamed live on the internet via the IHSSN. Check out our post for more information.

Social Media

If you cannot be at the game or follow along with TV coverage and want up-to-date game action and statistics, follow the Bears on Twitter at @WBBearsFootball or like/follow the West Branch Football page on Facebook for updates. Also be sure you're subscribed to our YouTube channel to watch highlights and a full-game replay as soon as they're available.


Van Meter is 10-1 on the season and is the #1 overall seed in the final four. West Branch is 11-0 and is the #4 overall seed.

Last Meeting

In 2018, the Bulldogs defeated the Bears 31-21 at Van Meter. View more from that game.

Game Notes

VAN METER is the defending Class 1A champion and has qualified for an impressive eighth consecutive semifinal appearance (2015-2022). During that span, the Bulldogs are an even more impressive 92-7. Van Meter lost to Class 2A #1 Williamsburg 18-13 during week 2. Since that time, the Dogs have outscored their next 9 opponents 454-27 (including four shutouts in a row, and 6 of the last 7). Some of the headliners are RB Ben Gordon (1471 rushing yards, 26 TD), QB Ben Gilliland (1058 passing yards, 746 rushing yards, 29 combined TD), and WR Will Gordon (350 receiving yards). Defensively, Michael Banks is the bell cow (16.5 tackles for loss, 29 solo tackles) and Porter Doggett is just behind with 28 solo tackles. The Bulldogs average just over one INT per game. You know what you'll get from Van Meter: physicality and precision.

WEST BRANCH is playing in the UNI-Dome for the first time since 2011. The Bears have had a long line of success in the own part. You can say West Branch is one of the more successful 1A teams in Class 1A over the past 20 years. What has West Branch hung its hat on this season? Physicality. Precision. They have beaten teams with smash-mouth and with finesse. RB Andy Henson leads all of Class 1A with 30 rushing touchdowns (1443 rushing yards). QB Tye Hughes has really come on of late with his feet; rushing for 483 yards and adding in 10 TD. He has also passed for 1318 yards with 12 TD. The Bear defense is no slouch, allowing less than 10 points per game. Defensive Linemen Aiden Dingbaum and Logan Wright have been particularly strong as the season gained steam. Perhaps the most diligent player is Reese Trepanier. He plays with the passion of a dog on a bone. 

IT'S AS EASY AS 1,2,3,4 - Van Meter's defense is ranked number one in 1A vs. West Branch's 4th ranked offense. Meanwhile, the Bears have the 2nd ranked defense vs. the Bulldogs third ranked offense. 

KEEP AN EYE ON - Ben Gordon. He is usually fresh when he is on the field, as the Bulldogs have the numbers to keep him off the field on defense. Gordon runs with a sly speed and power combination. 

QUOTABLE - “To be in the Final Four is a real honor. We know we will have to play our very best to beat them (Van Meter). But that's the way it should be once you reach this level.” – Head Coach Butch Pedersen

Go Bears!