SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The KELOLAND.com Livestream Game of the Week returns this Friday with a cross-town rivalry in 11AAA football. Roosevelt is set to host #5 Lincoln at 7 p.m. at Howard Wood Field.

Both teams reached the 11AAA playoffs in 2021, but it was Lincoln who advanced to the semifinals. They would suffer a narrow 17-10 loss to eventual state champion, Harrisburg.

The Patriots return a load of talent and that’s why they’re a team to watch for 2022.

LINCOLN PATRIOTS

Lincoln Patriots Football – 2021

Lincoln reached the semifinals and is considered a top team to watch in 2022, though they went just 6-5 last season.

“We’re excited about what the future is going to hold, but in the same breath, we were 6-5. Even though it was a winning season and we played a lot of young kids, we really haven’t done anything yet,” Fredenburg said.

The Patriots return 31 upper-classmen, including 16 juniors. 14 of their 22 starters are back from 2022.

Their junior class showed signs of promise as sophomores last year and now they’ve got a year of experience.

“The game is so fast and for a sophomore to have that kind of game reps and experience in a hectic environment, you just can’t replicate that,” Lincoln head coach Jared Fredenburg said.

Lincoln returns plenty of talent, including starting quarterback, Tate Schafer. As a sophomore, Schafer threw for 2,263 yards and 20 touchdowns. The biggest concern was the interceptions as he threw 18, but following a year of experience, that number is expected to go down.

Fans should expect big things from #12 this fall.

The positive for Schafer the offense is the return of several receiving weapons. Four of the top five leading receivers are back and in the starting lineup for Lincoln.

Jack Smith, Trenton Peterson, Isaac Jarovski and Sam Hindbjorgen are four primary targets for Schafer. Those four combined for 127 receptions, 1,582 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Defensively, the Patriots have a mean front seven. Three of their starting linebackers return and they featured some guys that could hit last year. Senior, Gabe Gutierrez is back in the linebacker spot. He had a team high 78 tackles and 14 tackles for loss.


ROOSEVELT ROUGH RIDERS

Roosevelt Rough Riders Football – 2021

Roosevelt had quite the roller coaster of a season in 2021. They had some skill positions to fill and it took them a few games to get their feet under them.

After losing in the Dakota Bowl, which was delayed three times, the Rough Riders went on to start just 1-4.

They suffered a narrow 38-34 loss to #1 Harrisburg and that seemed to spark something for the Riders. They’d win their next four games, all of which saw their offense post more than 40 points per game.

However, Roosevelt would suffer a quarterfinal exit in the playoffs, with a 42-28 loss to O’Gorman.

Fast forward to this season and the Rough Riders have plenty of holes to fill. They graduated 20 seniors, including some big names on the line of scrimmage.

While there are some holes to fill, Roosevelt has a couple of spots that return talent, such as the quarterback position.

Jackson Brouwer returns under center, following a sophomore season that saw him get better with each and every snap.

They also return one of his favorite targets in wide receiver, Jaxsen Grevengoed.

Overall, the Rough Riders return just a handful of starters from last season.

“We’re pretty inexperienced. That’s partly good, because we can tell them things and they’ll believe us, because they don’t know any better,” Roosevelt head coach Kim Nelson said. “We also need to get under fire and see how good we are against some good competition. We’re going to find out pretty soon with Lincoln as the first game of the year.”


FRIDAY’S GAME

Friday’s cross-town rivalry gets underway at 7 p.m. from Howard Wood Field. You can stream the contest on the Game of the Week page on KELOLAND.com.

Play-by-play will be provided by KELOLAND’s Grant Sweeter.