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Attending a South Dakota prep football game this fall? If so, recent history indicates the contest will not be close. A Daily Republic analysis of the last eight football seasons in the state has revealed that nearly 40 percent of the prep football games in South Dakota are decided by 35 points or more. On top of that, at least 15 percent of South Dakota's games didn't go the full 48 minutes of regulation time, ended early by South Dakota's relatively unique 50-point mercy rule.
It hasn't always been like this for Mitchell football. Full stands. Festive atmosphere. A hard-fought win that wasn't ever really in doubt. That is what gives D.J. Krogman and his teammates an extra lift in a home game. All of that extra energy around the stadium and around the Kernels is what Krogman called the "juice," something that he hopes will be passed down to future iterations of Mitchell football.
The strong start to the season for the Mitchell volleyball team didn’t stop Saturday. The No. 2-ranked Kernels continued their winning ways with a three-set sweep over the Brookings Bobcats at the Mitchell High School gym as part of the Kernel Bowl festivities, stretching their season-opening win streak to eight matches and have won 19 consecutive sets. Set scores were 25-15, 26-24 and 25-23.
The football teams from Mount Vernon/Plankinton and Woonsocket/Wessington Springs/Sanborn Central have learned a lot about 11-man football in the first two games of the season. Now, they'll test it out on each other. Each in their first season of 11-man football, both the Titans and Blackhawks have taken a crash course in the different style of play and the two teams will meet in Mount Vernon today, continuing a rivalry started in the nine-man ranks.
PARKSTON — Get it rolling and get it in rhythm. If those two things are happening for Jacob Lee on the putting green and in a tournament competition on the golf course, look out. Because when the Parkston High School senior is on his game, Lee is among the state's best prep golfers. It's his complete game and his level-headed approach to the game that has served the Trojans senior well.
WESSINGTON SPRINGS — Playing the No. 1 team in Class 11B, the Woonsocket/Wessington Springs/Sanborn Central football team needed Bridgewater-Emery/Ethan to make some mistakes. On Saturday, the Seahawks didn’t have many. BEE ran the ball 59 times for 430 yards and didn’t allow the 11-man upstart Blackhawks any scoring chances in a 33-0 shutout. Through two games this season, the Seahawks have yet to allow any points and have outscored opponents 73-0.
For a number of area football powers, they're back together again. With the move of Bon Homme in 2015 and Parkston this season down to nine-man football and into the seven-team Missouri Valley Conference, a number of old rivalries are being renewed, many of them linking back to the long-standing Southeast South Dakota Conference.
In volleyball, almost every point comes with a celebration. For Mitchell's Mackenzie Miller, she's the calm leader in a sometimes point-for-point storm of the sport. The Kernel standout has developed into the team's leader both by example and by direction as a leader among 11 juniors on a team with just one senior. Miller, a 5-foot-11 outside hitter, has developed a well-rounded game that always makes her a go-to threat and a six-position player for Mitchell coach Deb Thill.
It was hardly a warm-up match for the Mitchell High School volleyball team. The No. 3 Kernels and No. 4 Aberdeen Central played like two of the top teams in the state Tuesday at the MHS gym and Mitchell was just strong enough late in the match to hold off the Golden Eagles in a fun, thrilling five-set match to open Eastern South Dakota Conference play. Set scores were 25-15, 18-25, 16-25, 25-16 and 15-9. "That was a great game. No question about it. Two great teams there," Mitchell coach Deb Thill said.
BROOKINGS — Whatever the need for the South Dakota State University football team's offensive line, Wes Genant is prepared. A Parkston native, Genant played extensively as a true freshman at right tackle for the Jackrabbits but he's balanced time at both tackle and guard during this offseason. His SDSU coaches said it's likely he sees time at both positions and he's been as well equipped as anyone to handle the change.