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It's officially December and in South Dakota, it's still college football season. That's not the case in Nebraska. And unlike our neighbors to the north, it's still football season for both flagship universities. Not just one. That's how good college football has become in the Rushmore State.
EMERY — With plenty of talent returning, the Bridgewater-Emery boys basketball team is looking to be in the mix for another state championship. The Huskies, who went 26-0 en route to the school's first Class B state title, return 12 letterwinners from last year's team, including three starters. Led by junior all-staters Jamin Arend and Sawyer Schultz, B-E isn't looking to change much from its winning formula. Head coach Scott Schultz the team isn't approaching the season any different as defending state champions.
Parkston native Wes Genant was one of nine South Dakota State University football players named to the Missouri Valley Football Conference All-Academic Team announced on Wednesday. To be named to the team, players must be starters or important reserves with a cumulative grade-point average of 3.20 as well as sophomore level or above. Genant, a sophomore starting offensive lineman, was named to the first team and posted a 3.97 GPA as a biochemistry major.
There's plenty of experience back in the Mitchell High School wrestling room. Mitchell, which qualified 12 wrestlers for last year's state tournament, returns nine state qualifiers, including all four state placers—Carson Max (third), Briggs Havlik (sixth), Kyle Foote (eighth) and Logan Sparks (eighth). "We're excited about what we have as possibilities throughout the year," MHS head coach Travis Carpenter said. "Just like always, we're not going to be where we want to be at the beginning of the year. You're never as good as you want to be at the start."
Back-to-back state champion Gregory landed five players on the Class 9AA all-state team, selected by the South Dakota High School Football Coaches Association. The Gorillas, who went 12-0 for the second straight season, led all teams with five players selected, including three-time all-stater Jayd VanDerWerff and repeat selection Andy McCance. The other three Gorillas were senior Cade Fortuna and juniors Tyler Murray and J.J. Beck.
GREGORY — Andy McCance's accomplishments are second to none.
Through the first seven games of the season, Kynedi Cheeseman is putting up the points. The sophomore guard has emerged as one of the Dakota Wesleyan University women's basketball team's top scoring threats. Cheeseman, a former Hanson standout and Alexandria native, is averaging 15.7 points per game to lead the Tigers. She's reached double figures in every game this year and poured in a career-high 29 points against Friends (Kan.) on Nov. 11 in Winfield, Kansas.
Facing the possibility of a fourth-straight defeat and trailing Concordia 66-62 with 7 minutes and 25 seconds left, the Dakota Wesleyan University men’s basketball team turned it on. The No. 10-ranked Tigers closed on a furious 15-3 run and pulled out a 77-69 Great Plains Athletic Conference victory over the Bulldogs on Saturday at the Corn Palace.
The Dakota Wesleyan University women's basketball team is ready to be challenged. For the second time this season, DWU will host a top-10 matchup at the Corn Palace when the No. 8 Tigers host the No. 3 Concordia Bulldogs in a Great Plains Athletic Conference showdown at 2 p.m. today. On Oct. 31, the Tigers trounced No. 9 Jamestown 87-69 in their season opener and have rattle off five more wins since then, including a 100-70 win over No. 16 Friends University on Nov. 11.
For the next two years, the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls will be home to the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Division II men’s basketball tournament.