If you’re a high school football fan in the area, there are differently some prime viewing opportunities this weekend.
Some of the top options follow.
Pierre at Watertown
Senior quarterback Lincoln Kienholz and the five-time defending Class 11AA state football champion Pierre Governors (4-0) are set to visit Watertown (1-3) in an Eastern South Dakota Conference game at 7 p.m. Friday.
Kienholz, who is fun to watch and has signed to play for Milbank native Kalen DeBoer at the University of Washington, has completed 74 of 105 passes for 1,280 yards and 19 touchdowns this season. He’s also dangerous with his feet, leading the Govs in rushing with 302 yards and four touchdowns. Junior tight end Jett Zabel (21 receptions for 290 yards and five touchdowns) and senior receiver Jack Merkwan (20-505 with five TDs) have been Kienholz’s favorite targets.
Watertown hasn’t beaten Pierre since the 2016 season opener, but there’s a catch. The two squads didn’t play from 2017-2020 when the Arrows were a Class 11AAA team. The teams met again last year with Pierre winning 52-42 during the regular season and 38-9 in the playoffs.
Herreid/Selby Area vs. Sully Buttes
Third-ranked Sully Buttes (5-0) hosts No. 1 Herreid/Selby Area (4-0) at 7 p.m. Friday in a matchup of top Class 9B teams.
The Wolverines advanced to the Class 9A state championship game last fall before losing to Howard. They dropped down to Class 9B and haven’t missed a beat, outscoring their foes by a 206-46 margin.
Running back Brenden Begeman has already scored 15 touchdowns (11 rushing and four receiving) in four games. Quarterback Tray Hettick is another leader for for Herreid/Selby Area.
Sully Buttes has enjoyed a quick start and has outscored five teams by a 176-28 margin.
The catch is that the Chargers’ perfect start has come against teams that currently have a combined record 5-17. Herreid/Selby Area’s four opponents are a combined 8-12, including 4-1 Timber Lake and 3-2 Ipswich.
Hamlin at Castlewood
Third-ranked Class 9AA Hamlin (5-0) visits No. 3 Class 9A Castlewood (4-0) at 7 p.m. Friday. The Chargers have been dominant, having outscored their five foes by a 235-24 margin. The host Warriors have been similar. After a 20-14 season-opening win over fourth-ranked Class 9B De Smet, Castlewood has won three more games by a combined 164-13 margin.
Running back Luke Fraser is a big threat for Hamlin. He’s rushed for 761 yards and 11 touchdowns and caught four passes for 171 yards and four touchdowns. He’s tough to stop.
However, that’s not it for Hamlin. Quarterback Tyson Stevenson has completed 26 of 38 passes for 598 yards and 12 touchdowns. Zac VanMeeteren has caught eight passes for 199 yards and has scored five TDs. Evan Stormo has nine catches for 154 yards and four scores on the season.
Castlewood has spread the wealth more, although quarterback Lane Tvedt has been a big factor. He has rushed for 269 yards and eight touchdowns and completed 23 of 48 passes for 478 yards. Jackson Schofield, Booker Schooley, Carson Kirwan and Quincy Thu each have caught four passes and scored at least two touchdowns.
The battle of Hamlin County features two of the best programs and coaches going in Hamlin’s Jeff Sheehan and Castlewood’s Doug Ruesink.
Aberdeen Central plays at Huron Friday night in Eastern South Dakota Conference action, while undefeated Aberdeen Roncalli, ranked No. 5 in Class 11B, has the weekend off.
Meanwhile, Dacotah Bank Stadium on the Northern State University campus in Aberdeen will host two high school games Friday and two more on Saturday
Aberdeen Central at Huron, 7 p.m.: Both the Golden Eagles and Tigers are 1-3 and coming off their first wins of the season. One of them is going to have a two-game winning streak.
Northwestern vs. Langford Area, 5 p.m. in Aberdeen: The two 0-5 teams meet in the Lake Region Conference Classic at Northern State’s Dacotah Bank Field.
Warner vs. Faulkton Area, 7 p.m. in Aberdeen: Another Lake Region Conference Classic game at Northern’s Dacotah Bank Field matches the second-ranked Class 9A Monarchs (4-0) and the 3-2 Trojans.
Britton-Hecla at Arlington, 7 p.m.: The 2-2 Braves head to Arlington, which is 0-4.
Clark-Willow Lake at Mobridge-Pollock, 7 p.m. at Mobridge: Clark-Willow Lake is 2-3 and Mobridge-Pollock is 3-2.
Sunshine Bible Academy at Hitchcock-Tulare, 7 p.m. in Hitchcock: The Class 9B No. 2 Patriots are likely going to improve to 6-0 when they host 0-4 Sunshine Bible Academy.
Sisseton at Groton Area, 7 p,m.: The Northeast Conference matchup features the 2-3 Tigers against the 1-4 Redmen.
Dakota Hills at Deuel, 7 p.m. in Clear Lake: Another likely one-sided matchup with the 4-1 Cardinals hosting the 0-5 Grizzlies.
Milbank at Dell Rapids, 7 p.m.: The schedule doesn’t get any easier for the 0-4 Bulldogs when they visit the 4-0 and second-ranked Class 11A Quarriers.
Iroquois-Lake Preston at Elkton-Lake Benton, 7 p.m. in Elkton: The host Elks will attempt to go to 6-0 with a win over the 0-5 Sharks.
Deubrook Area at Florence-Henry, 7 p.m. in Henry: The Falcons improved to 2-2 last week with a win over Waverly-South Shore, where Nathan Lamb used to coach before he took over Deubrook Area (4-1).
Winnebago, Neb. at Tiospa Zina, 6 p.m. in Agency Village: The two 3-1 teams meet in an All-Nations Conference game.
McCook Central-Montrose at Sioux Valley, 7 p.m. in Volga: This could prove to be an interesting Class 11B battle between the 4-1 Fighting Cougars and the 3-2 Cossacks.
Estelline-Hendricks at Centerville, 7 p.m.: The 2-2 Redhawks hit the road to take on 1-4 Centerville.
Redfield at Webster Area, 7 p.m.: Another Northeast Conference matchup with 2-2 Redfield visiting 1-3 Webster Area.
Tri-State at Richland, N.D., 7 p.m.: The visiting Tigers (0-5) hope to challenge for their first win against 1-4 Richland.
Leola-Frederick Area vs. Ipswich, 1 p.m. at Aberdeen: This game is part of the Lake Region Conference Classic at Dacotah Bank Field. Ipswich is 3-2 and Leola/Frederick 2-2.
Great Plains Lutheran vs. North Central, 4 p.m. at Aberdeen: Another game at Dacotah Field on the Northern State campus features 2-2 Great Plains Lutheran and 1-3 North Central.
McLaughlin at Cheyenne-Eagle Butte/Tiospaye Topa, 3 p.m. in Eagle Butte: An All-Nations Conference game between 2-2 McLaughlin and 0-4 CEB/TT.