Kernel Gameday: Mitchell football aims to stop skid at home vs. Watertown – Mitchell Republic

MITCHELL — With the regular season two-thirds over and looking for a spark, the Mitchell High School football team hosts Watertown in a South Dakota Eastern Conference contest that will change postseason prospects for both programs. . Here’s what you need to know before the contest:

7 p.m. Friday

Field Joe Quintal

Mitchell 1-5; Watertown 1-5.

Last meeting:
Mitchell visited Watertown last season and defeated the Arrows, 27-13, in the penultimate game of the regular season, snapping a six-game losing streak for the Kernels in 2021.

Prior to last season’s matchup, the two schools had not played since 2018 due in part to Watertown competing in Class 11AAA. Between 2013 and 2018, Mitchell went 4-2 in the series, with four straight Kernels wins between 2014 and 2017, backed by wins by Arrow.

In the past week:
Mitchell fell en route to Spearfish, 26-21, while Watertown was shut out in a 17-0 loss to Class 11AA No. 5 Aberdeen Central.


  • Neither team received votes in South Dakota Prep Media’s most recent football poll on Oct. 3. Both teams made their most recent appearances on September 19, with Mitchell getting two votes to one for Watertown.
  • As of Oct. 6, Mitchell holds the No. 7 seed in the Class 11AA postseason standings, with Watertown a half-point behind at No. 8. Huron and Sturgis aren’t far behind, tied at just one-sixth of a point. behind the Arrows, and making Friday night’s game important in determining who ends up making the playoffs.

About cores:

  • Mitchell had a breakthrough against Spearfish last week, scoring in the first quarter for the first time in 2022 with a pair of early touchdowns that came off turnovers. The Kernels will be looking for another fast start this week, having scored in the first quarter against the Arrows last season. On the season, the Kernels have been outscored 158-35 in the first half and 94-14 in the first quarter alone.
  • In last year’s meeting, the Kernels intimidated the Arrows on the ground, rolling for almost as many rushing yards (261) as Watertown’s total yards (280). Mitchell also won the turnover battle, taking the ball away three times (two fumble recoveries and an interception) and only giving it away once.
  • Quarterback Treyson Schulz accounted for two of Mitchell’s four touchdowns against the Arrows last season, one through the air and one on the ground. As the Kernels’ leading passer (613 yards, four touchdowns) and running back (178 yards, two touchdowns) to date, he’s expected to replicate and improve on that effort beginning in 2021.
  • The receiver at the end of Schulz’s 18-yard touchdown goal in the first quarter at Watertown last season and with a standout senior campaign in 2022, AJ Siemsen will look to find the end zone again and add his team-best 22 receptions to 260 yards and two scores.
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About the arrows:

  • One of the standout players in Class 11AA this season, Juven Hudson will be the focus of Mitchell’s defense this week. For the season, the 5-foot-11, 170-pound junior leads the class with 742 rushing yards and has found the end zone on the ground five times. In Watertown’s only win against Huron, Hudson rushed 24 times for 207 yards and three touchdowns.
  • The Arrows ran the ball well against Mitchell last season, gaining 190 rushing yards on 25 attempts. With Hudson at the helm, Watertown will look to duplicate that success at Mitchell’s home field.
  • Watertown’s road to Friday’s game has played out almost identically to Mitchell’s. Both teams faced Class 11AA ranked opponents and lost to open the season before winning at their home courses in Week 2. But since the first weekend of September, both have lost four in a row, including common opponents Pierre and Aberdeen Central along with a game against Class 11AAA opposition.

Mitchell hosts another ESD rivalry contest, this time against Huron, at Joe Quintal Field on October 14. Watertown returns home to welcome Spearfish, also on October 14.

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