Will Fargo South and its explosive offense erupt or fizzle out against top-ranked West Fargo on Friday night? Who will reign supreme in the fight for the Region 1 title in Class A, Hillsboro-CV or Ellendale-E-K? Plus, the final week of 9-man football brings us some intriguing matchups between ranked teams and there's a new king of the mountain in Class AA. Hopefully, my power rankings get you set for another exciting night of high school football! Plus, don't forget to take a look at last week's top performers!
- West Fargo (6-0)
- Century (5-1)
- Bismarck (5-1)
- Fargo South (5-1)
- WF Sheyenne (4-2)
My Take: What is left to accomplish for this West Fargo team? The Packers are 6-0 and are defeating teams by an average of 30.3 ppg (#1 in AAA). This past week, Andy Gravdahl and Jacob Faircloth etched their name into the record books with some eye-popping numbers (see ND Game Ball winners below). This week, the Packers travel to #4 Fargo South. The Bruins EDC-leading passing attack gives them a chance, but it’s hard to imagine any team surprising West Fargo right now. Bismarck Century impresses me more each week. Their defense forced turnovers and their offense was balanced in a 38-7 win over a very good Minot team last Friday. Bismarck High has been playing some great defense the last two weeks. I’m interested to see how the Demons handle Jason Hoekstra and that Legacy passing game that appeared to get back on track last week. Sheyenne is number five for me because that win over Century is looking more impressive each week.
- Shanley (6-0)
- St. Mary’s (5-1)
- Jamestown (4-2)
- Wahpeton (4-2)
- Devils Lake (4-2)
My Take: First off, congrats to Shanley and St. Mary’s for putting on a great show on Friday night. It was another memorable battle in the series and for the first time since 2002, the Deacons were able to celebrate a victory against the Saints. I’m just bummed that each team’s top player had to suffer an injury in the game. St. Mary’s QB Cole Gendreau and Shanley TE/LB Jake Kava both left with injuries midway through the game. Gendreau’s status remains uncertain. I’m told Kava is likely to miss 1-2 weeks after spraining his knee. If you’re interested in seeing Shanley this week, we’ll have the Deacons game with Valley City live on MidcoSN on Friday night at 7 o’clock. The biggest game in AA this week has Wahpeton travelling to Jamestown in a big one on Friday. Both teams are 4-2 with 3 games to play and it’s all about trying to finish in that top four to secure a home playoff game.
- Beulah (6-0)
- E-E-K (6-0)
- Hillsboro-CV (6-0)
- Langdon (6-0)
- Velva (6-0)
My Take: The media poll had EEK as the top team all year, until last week when Hillsboro-CV took over the #1 title. Those two go head-to-head this week, which has all the makings of an instant classic. Meanwhile, I’ve had Beulah as my top team from day one. I’m really looking forward to Friday when the Miners have a chance to solidify my praise for them when they take on Trinity in Dickinson. The Titans have won 4 straight and allowed 2 points in that span since a season-opening loss to Bowman County. Velva replaces Carrington after the Cardinals were dealt their first loss by #4 Langdon-Munich. It’s hard to say whether the Aggies are, indeed, better than Carrington, but they’ve outscored their opponents by a combined margin of 272-13 in 6 games. I think Carrington, Oak Grove, Bishop Ryan, and Trinity all deserve to be in the conversation for that fifth spot.
- Cavalier (7-0)
- Shiloh Christian (7-0)
- Wyndmere-Lidgerwood (7-0)
- Thompson (6-1)
- New Salem-GU (7-0)
My Take: It’s the final week of the 9-man regular season and I’m excited because we have not one, but TWO top five matchups this week. There’s nothing better than a tune-up for the postseason with a little extra flavor to it. Cavalier should handle New Rockford-Sheyenne and finish undefeated to win the region 2 crown. The region 1 crown is on the line Friday with #4 Thompson travelling to #3 Wyndmere-Lidgerwood. That one is a coin flip for me. Both teams have a ton of playmakers, that’s why I think we’re going to see a high-scoring affair. Meanwhile, New Salem-GU is into my top five replacing North Prairie. The Holsteins have a huge opportunity on Friday to knock off #2 Shiloh Christian and win the region 5 crown. Class AAA continues to be ruled by West Fargo, but there's a new team on top in Class AA. As the 9-man season enters its final week of the regular season find out what some of the big games could mean for playoff positioning. Plus, I'll put a spotlight on the top peformances from last Friday night.
Last Week's Top 10 Performers:
- Tanner DuBois, Fargo South: 375 pass yds, 6 TD
- Kaleb Christmann, Shanley: 9 rush, 102 yds, TD
- Aaron Deike, Wahpeton: 41 rush, 185 yds, 5 TD in 6OT win over Devils Lake
- Anfernee Economy, Langdon-E-M: 5 rec, 101 yds, 3 TD
- Derek Ferebee, Beulah: 3-3, 113 yds, 3 TD, 91 rush yds, TD, rec TD
- Lane Bell, Park River-F-L: 3 INT, rush TD
- Jamison Fettig, Napoleon-G-S: 223 rush yds, 105 pass yds, 3 total TD
- Cole Myers, Richland: 401 pass yds, 7 TD
- Marcus Hughes, Thompson: 212 rec yds, 5 TD
- Jack Ihry, FSHP: 330 rush yds, 3 TD
ND Game Ball Co-Winners:
- Andy Gravdahl, West Fargo: 26-40, 400 yds, 3 TD (Broke school single game records for passing yards & total offense in addition to taking over career passing yards record)
- Jacob Faircloth, West Fargo: 12 rec, 169 yds, 2 TD (Broke school single game records for receptions and receiving yards)