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SIOUX FALLS—In Kent VanOverschelde's 10 years coaching the Mitchell High School football team, he's never won a game in Sioux Falls. That changed on Friday as the No. 2 Kernels (5-1) earned an emphatic victory over Class 11AAA foe—Sioux Falls Lincoln—28-7 at Howard Wood Field in Sioux Falls. Bolstered by a stout defense that forced three turnovers and another sensational performance by senior Spencer Neugebauer, Mitchell posted a 21-0 lead at halftime and cruised to the win.
In a classic battle of smaller school against bigger school, smaller schools have been holding their own. When the South Dakota High School Activities Association created a new 11-man football class in 2013—known as Class 11AAA—the bigger schools in Sioux Falls had won nine-straight state championships dating back to 2003.
Kent VanOverschelde was eager to see how the Mitchell High School football team would approach practice ahead of one of the team's toughest opponents on the schedule. Riding a four-game winning streak and coming off back-to-back blowout wins over Sturgis and Spearfish, would the Kernels be a little timid or overly-focused for their next opponent? VanOverschelde said the answer was no and added he's liked what he's seen from the Kernels this week ahead of the team's matchup against Class 11AAA opponent Sioux Falls Lincoln at 5 p.m. today at Howard Wood Field in Sioux Falls.
Sammy Pooley is determined. Heading into her final two tennis competitions of her junior season, Pooley is looking to make her mark on South Dakota girls tennis. She's also hoping the hard work she's put in throughout the offseason and in the season will be enough for the Kernels to win the Eastern South Dakota Conference meet, which begins today in Brandon. "I think we've had a goal and I've had the goal since the beginning of the season to win the ESD," Pooley said. "The season has been going really well."
It took two plays for the No. 2 Mitchell High School football team to take the lead over No. 5 Spearfish. It remained that easy for the Kernels to score on the Spartans the rest of the first half as Mitchell rolled Spearfish 55-20 in front of a large homecoming crowd on Friday at Joe Quintal Field. Executing at a high level, the Kernels would finish the first half with 55 unanswered points and outgained Spearfish 321-86 in the first half.
Two of Mitchell's most well-known girls basketball players will be inducted into the Mitchell High School Hall of Fame on Saturday. The Hoffman twins, now known as Jeana Krome and Jenna Kubesh, along with the 1982 MHS wrestling team, legendary head coach Gary Munsen and Dr. Robert McWhirter will be a part of the 2016 MHS Hall of Fame inductee class. The hall of fame banquet will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday at the new Overtime Banquet Hall.
Riding a three-game winning streak, the Mitchell High School football team is set for another stern test. The Kernels have found a winning formula and head coach Kent VanOverschelde credited the team's daily focus and hard work to the string of wins. "It's been our approach and our approach has been as consistent as possible," VanOverschelde said. "We understand that we need to take a step forward each and every week. That's been our approach."
John Stiegelmeier has the nicest office on the campus of South Dakota State University. His office in the Dykhouse Student-Athlete Center overlooks the newly finished Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium and the 20-year head coach doesn't take it for granted. Stiegelmeier opened his remarks at Wednesday's Mitchell Quarterback Club meeting stating how "blessed" he is and that he's "still living his dream."
It's been a good start to the season for Kiel Nelson. In Nelson's first three games as the starting quarterback for the Mitchell Kernels, he's helped guide the team to three wins. While he hasn't been the focal point of the offense, Nelson has simply done what has been asked of him. For a quarterback, a player that touches the ball on nearly every offensive play, doing the simple motions correctly can be easier said than done.
GREGORY—There's not many quarterbacks in South Dakota—college, pro or otherwise—that pass for six touchdowns in a single game. There's even fewer quarterbacks that have passed for six touchdowns in a nine-man football game. Gregory's Andy McCance joined the six passing touchdown club in the Gorillas' 40-13 victory over Miller on Friday in Miller. "He's throwing the ball pretty good," Gregory head coach Brian Allmendinger said. "He has real good accuracy, he is pretty mobile so he can buy himself time when he needs to."