The 2023 South Dakota High School Championships are back inside the DakotaDome for the 42nd year.
The championship games for each class have been held in the DakotaDome since 1981 when South Dakota first introduced playoffs in football to the state.
The Championships started off with the All-Nations State B and A games on Nov. 4. The first game was B at 4 p.m. then the second one was A at 7 p.m.
In the All Nations B championship, the No. 1 seed Lower Brule Sioux (9-0) faced off against No. 2 Tiospa Zina Wambdi (7-1).
Lower Brule defeated No. 4 McLaughlin 38-16 in the semifinals on Oct. 28.As for Tiospa Zina, they defeated No. 3 Omaha Nation 29-6.
In the championship game, Lower Brule pitched a shutout against Tiospa Zina as they won 42-0.
The next matchup was the All Nations A championship game where No. 1 Todd County Falcons (8-0) faced off against No. 3 Winnebago Indians (7-2).
On Oct. 27, the Falcons defeated the No. 4 Cheyenne-Eagle Butte-Tiospay Braves 44-12 in the semifinals.
The very next day, Winnebago faced No. 2 seed the Pine Ridge Thorpes and upset the two seed 45-20. In the first game of the season, Pine Ridge defeated Winnebago 36-32.
In the championship game, Todd County defeated Winnebago 28-13. Todd County defeated Winnebago twice this season including the championship game.
The next action in the DakotaDome will be on Nov. 9 with 9B at 10 a.m., 9A at 2 p.m. and 9AA at 7 p.m.
In the 9B championship game, the No. 1 Avon Pirates (9-2) will face off against the No. 2 Faulkton Area Trojans (10-1).
Avon’s path to the DakotaDome started with them defeating No. 16 Faith 54-14 in the first round. It was then followed by a quarterfinals victory over No. 8 Hitchcock-Tulare 38-14, and they secured their spot in the championship game with a victory overNo. 4 De Smet 46-19 in the semifinals.
Faulkton Area started the 9B playoffs with a shutout victory over No. 15 Jones County 50-0 in the first round. Their next matchup was against No. 10 Kadoka Area in the quarterfinals where they pitched another shutout, 48-0. In the semifinals matchup, the Trojans defeated No. 11 Potter County 42-0 for their third straight shutout.
Avon defeated the Trojans last year in the first round of the playoffs 74-48 before the Pirates lost in the quarterfinals.
Avon is looking for their first title since 2013, and Faulkton Area is looking for their first ever title after finishing runner-up in 2014.
In the 9A championship game, the No. 1 Warner Monarchs (11-0) faced off against the No. 7 Deubrook Area Dolphins (8-3).
In the first round of the playoffs, Warner defeated No. 16 Colman-Egan 57-0 in the first round. They pitched another shutout in the quarterfinals this time against No. 9 Castlewood as they won 56-0.In the semifinals match, the Monarchs defeated No. 4 Canistota 37-16.
The Dolphins defeated No. 10 Estelline-Hendricks 45-6 in the first round. They then went on the road to play No. 2 Alcester-Hudson where the Dolphins upset the Cubs, 14-10 in the quarterfinals. In the semifinals, the Dolphins went back on the road this time to play No. 3 Philip where they got another upset, 18-14.
The Monarchs, who lost last year in the championship game to Gregory 36-23, hopes to claim the title this year.
Both teams were looking for their first state title after Warner has three runner-up finishes.
In the 9AA championship game, the No. 1 Parkston Trojans (11-0) faced off against the No. 3 Howard Tigers (10-1).
In the first round, Parkston defeated No. 16 Viborg-Hurley 42-0 in the first round, No. 9 Hanson 28-0 in the quarterfinals and No. 4 Hamlin 26-3 in the semifinals.
Howard defeated No. 14 Ipswich 60-14 in the first round, No. 6 Elkton-Lake Benton 28-8 in the quarterfinals and No. 2 Platte-Geddes 36-0 in the semifinals.
Parkston lost in the championship game last year to Wall 34-14 looked to climb to the top this year for their first title.
Howard is searching for their first title since 2008.
Following class 9 football, 11 man football will begin on Nov. 10 with the 11B, A and AA championship games.
In the 11B championship game, the No. 4 Elk Point-Jefferson Huskies (10-1) face off against the No. 6 Hot Springs Bison (10-1).
In the first round, Elk Point-Jefferson defeated No. 13 Groton Area 48-13 in the first round. They then hosted No. 5 Tri-Valley where they won 14-7 in the quarterfinals. In the semifinals match, the Huskies went on the road to play against the top seed in Winner where they defeated them 21-16.
Hot Springs only went on the road for one game this postseason. Their first matchup was at home against No. 11 Bridgewater-Emery-Ethan where they won 55-7. They then traveled on the road to play against No. 3 Sioux Valley in the quarterfinals. There, they upset the Cossacks 49-13. In the semifinals, Hot Springs traveled back home to face off against No. 10 Rapid City Christian (who defeated No. 2 Deuel 13-8), where they punched their ticket into the DakotaDome with a 28-10 victory.
Elk Point-Jefferson is trying to claim back-to-back titles after winning it all last year.
On the other side, Hot Springs is trying to get payback against the Huskies after losing in the semifinals to them last year. This is their first time reaching the title game.
In the 11A championship game, the No. 1 Dell Rapids Quarriers (11-0) faced off against the No. 2 West Central Trojans (10-1).
Dell Rapids’ path to the championship had them only play two games. Their first match was a shutout against No. 8 Madison 52-0 in the quarterfinals. They then faced No. 4 Sioux Falls Christian in the semifinals where they won 22-14.
West Central defeated No. 7 Chamberlain 45-13 in the quarterfinals and No. 6 Lennox 57-22 in the semifinals.
This is a rematch of last season’s championship where Dell Rapids defeated West Central 24-7.
West Central is looking for their 11th title and the first one since 2013.
In the 11AA championship game, the No. 1 Pierre T.F. Riggs Governors (10-1) will face off against the No. 2 Yankton Bucks (10-1).
Pierre T.F. Riggs only had two games leading up to the DakotaDome as they defeated No. 8 Spearfish 49-26 in the quarterfinals and No. 4 Watertown 35-14 in the semifinals.
Yankton defeated No. 7 Huron 17-0 in the quarterfinals and No. 3 Tea Area 33-25 in the semifinals.
Yankton’s only loss of the season came to Pierre in a 27-14 home loss to the Governors.
The Governors are hoping to win their seventh straight title and the Bucks are hoping to win their first title since 2015, where they won two straight titles from 2014-2015.
The last game of the championships takes place on Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. with the 11AAA championship game between the No. 1 Sioux Falls Lincoln Patriots (11-0) and the No. 3 Sioux Falls O’Gorman Knights (9-2).
In the first round of the playoffs, Sioux Falls Lincoln defeated No. 8 Rapid City Stevens 56-21. They then hosted No. 4 Brandon Valley, where they secured a 28-21 victory.
Sioux Falls O’Gorman defeated No. 6 Sioux Falls Roosevelt 46-27 in the quarterfinals. They then went on the road to play No. 2 Harrisburg in the semifinals where they upset the Tigers 49-34.
O’Gorman’s losses on the season came against Harrisburg and Sioux Falls Lincoln. The Knights are now looking for revenge against the Patriots in the championship game.
Both teams missed out on the championship game last season as they both lost in the semifinals matchup.
Lincoln won the first two titles in 11AAA in 2013 and 2014 and haven’t made it back to the championship game.
O’Gorman is looking for their second title and their first since 2019.