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DEAL: Cubs are more than Hutmacher

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Chamberlain's Nash Hutmacher and Gunner Ristau block against Woonsocket/Wessington Springs/Sanborn Central on Friday in Chamberlain. WWSSC's Brendin LaBore (60) is at the left.

Nash Hutmacher will grab the headlines -- and deservedly so -- for the Chamberlain High School football team.

But the Polar Bear has some nice complementary pieces around him.

The Cubs opened the season with a 26-6 win over Woonsocket/Wessington Springs/Sanborn Central on Aug. 23 in Chamberlain.

Hutmacher, who is nicknamed the Polar Bear for his towering frame and blonde hair, will play football at Nebraska next season. He checks in at 6-feet-5, 305 pounds and is already a three-time state wrestling heavyweight champ.

While all eyes will be on the future Husker this season, make sure to give props to his teammates. The Cubs have some big bodies around him and that’s going to make life easier for them, but a nightmare for the opponents.

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The Cubs also feature Jackson Soulek (6-0, 275), Ruger Forester (5-11, 240), Hutmacher’s freshman brother Noah Hutmacher (6-0, 180), Gunner Ristau (6-1, 240), Brooks Swanson (6-3, 225), Kobly Hyland (6-4, 210) and Sellyck McManus (6-5, 225) along the lines that will help Nash wreak havoc up front. They’ll also open up running lanes for Chamberlain’s backs and look for the Cubs to wear teams down late in games.

“We are playing some great football in the trenches and that’s where I feel like our games are going to be won -- is in the trenches,” Hutmacher said after Chamberlain racked up 358 total yards in its season-opening win.

It’s just one game and dates with Class 11B powers Mount Vernon/Plankinton (Sept. 20) and Winner (Oct. 4) loom large, but the Cubs could be in for a fun season.

Kirsch throws 7 touchdowns

St. Thomas More’s Ryder Kirsch began his senior campaign with a bang.

The senior quarterback threw seven touchdown passes in STM’s 51-0 win over Hot Springs in its season opener. Kirsch finished 13 of 17 and passed for 319 yards.

Kirsch’s seven touchdown strikes are two short of South Dakota’s 11-man record for most passing touchdowns in a game. Sisseton’s Dustin Lotzer threw nine touchdowns in 2008.

The 6-foot-6 Kirsch joins a long list of dynamic quarterbacks under coach Wayne Sullivan’s watch at STM, which has also produced Nate and Jared Jacobsen, Jake Sullivan, Matthew Eastmo and Preston Arity.

Games to watch

Here are some prep football games to watch this week:

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De Smet vs. Canistota/Freeman in Freeman: De Smet opened the season with a convincing 34-0 win over Clark/Willow Lake on Aug. 23, while Canistota/Freeman opened with a 44-0 win over Chester Area. Now the Bulldogs and Pride (last year’s Class 9A state champs) will play in a game with major region implications. Canistota/Freeman is No. 2 in the latest 9A poll, while the Bulldogs are just on the outside of the top five.

Canton at Tea Area: Canton moved up from Class 11B to Class 11A and it draws last year’s state champion to open the year. The matchup will feature a pair of all-state performers in Canton’s Kayden Verley and Tea Area’s P.J. Parmelee. Tea Area is No. 1 in Class 11A, while Canton is honorable mention.

Sully Buttes at Wall: Wall began the 2019 campaign with a win over one nine-man power (Harding County) and it will get another one on Friday. Sully Buttes has played in three state championships in the past four seasons and it opened the season with a 42-14 win over Warner. The Chargers, who are No. 1 in Class 9A, are powered by quarterback Nick Wittler and lineman Jett Lamb. Wall, which is honorable mention in Class 9A, received 184 rushing yards from Bridger Amiotte in the opener.

St. Thomas More at Winner: The two West River powerhouses will meet in an early-season Class 11B showdown. STM’s Kirsch and Winner’s Brady Fritz are two of the top quarterbacks in the class, while both teams are loaded with playmakers. St. Thomas More is No. 2 in 11B and Winner checks in at No. 3 this week. Get to Winner early for this one.

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