Dell Rapids and Harrisburg met in the class 11A championship game two years ago, a game which the Dell Rapids Quarriers won 55-20. Harrisburg was attempting to avoid that same fate in this game, coming in with a 9-2 record, but facing the team that was a two-time defending champion of class 11A, and had won three of the last four class 11A championships. Dell Rapids had entered the game at 10-1, but had not lost to a class 11A opponent in three seasons.
That set the stage for this title game, and Dell Rapids took the ball to open the game and moved the ball to the Harrisburg 42, before the drive stalled. Riley Schmidt’s punt was lofted high in the air and downed 10 yards downfield. It would be the worst play of the night for Schmidt
Harrisburg got a first down, but couldn’t find any room to run the ball, and punted a few plays later. The Quarriers took the ball at their own 9-yard line, and drove the ball 9 plays and 91 yards for the game’s first score, when Cole Langer took the ball off right tackle and into the end zone. Zach White’s extra point attempt was good, and Dell Rapids held a 7-0 lead with 1:15 left in the first quarter.
Dell Rapids pressed their defensive advantage further, recovering a Kyle Ackermann fumble on the first play of the second quarter, giving the defending champions a short field at the Harrisburg 20. Three plays later, the Quarriers extended their lead with an 18-yard touchdown run from Langer. The extra point gave Dell Rapids a 14-0 lead with 10:45 left in the first half.
Harrisburg still couldn’t find any room to run their offense, losing five yards in three plays on their next possession. On the play after Andrew McCuen’s punt, the play was to Schmidt, who used his speed to find the end zone from 56 yards away. The extra point was wide left, and Dell Rapds now had a 20-0 lead with 9:03 left before the half. The Quarriers’ defense only stayed on the field another three plays before getting the ball back, followed by thier offense taking five plays to find the end zone yet again, this time a 19-yard run by Lane LeBrun. Matt Kolbeck then found Bryce Koch for the two-point conversion, giving Dell Rapids a 28-0 halftime lead. Harrisburg was held to just 79 yards of total offense in the first half. It wouldn’t get much better in the second half, either.
Harrisburg took the second half kickoff and got a nice drive down the field, but the drive stalled at the Dell Rapids 11-yard line, and the field goal attempt by McCuen sailed wide left, giving the ball back to Dell Rapids with 8:07 left in the third quarter. On the second play of this drive, Dell Rapids ran an inside reverse, which Michael McGee took for 76 yards for yet another Quarriers’ touchdown, giving Dell Rapids a 35-0 lead with 7:20 left in the third quarter. The defending champions tacked on another score on their next drive, a 17-yard run by Schmidt. Dell Rapids led 41-0 at the end of the third quarter.
Harrisburg got another good drive deep into Dell Rapids territory early in the fourth quarter, but facing fourth-and-goal from the 2-yard line, McCuen tried to plunge the ball into the end zone, but unfortunately fumbled the ball, which Schmidt recoverd on his own 11-yard line and returned for the final exclamation point on Dell Rapids’ third straight football championship, and fourth title in five seasons.
Schmidt was named the Joe Robbie MVP of this game, gaining 110 yards on just four carries, and scoring three touchdowns (one defensive).
SCORE BY QUARTERS 1 2 3 4-FINAL
HARRISBURG 0 0 0 0- 0
DELL RAPIDS 7 21 13 6-47
GAME STATS RUSHING: HARRISBURG: Schriever 7-50yds-0TD; Kabambi 6-46-0; D. Andela 4-21-0; Ackermann 3-16-0; Reiff 1-5-0; Warzecha 1-5-0; Holmstrom 5-(-2)-0; Hudson 1-(-3)-0; McCuen 13-(-12)-0. DELL RAPIDS: Schmidt 4-110-2TD; Langer 12-88-2; McGee 3-77-1; LeBrun 8-58-1; Bervan 1-11-0; R. Nichols 1-5-0; Kolbeck 2-4-0; B. Nichols 1-4-0; Nielsen 1-3-0; Huewe 1-2-0; DeNoon 1-(-4)-0.
PASSING: HARRISBURG: McCuen 13-26-145yds-0TD-1INT. DELL RAPIDS: Kolbeck 1-2-40-0-0.
RECEIVING: HARRISBURG: DeSchepper 5-93yds-0TD; Schriever 4-28-0; Appledorn 3-27-0; Ackermann 1-(-3)-0. DELL RAPIDS: Morris 1-40-0.