SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — It seems like just yesterday that the 2022 high school football season got underway, but like most years, the season has flown by and we find ourselves with playoff football on Thursday.

The quarterfinal round of the high school football playoffs is set for Thursday, October 27.

All seven classes will play on Thursday, with the first quarterfinal game set for 4:30 p.m. in 11AAA.

Here’s a look at the classes and their brackets:


Jefferson capped off an undefeated 9-0 season with a win over Roosevelt last week, earning them the top seed in the playoffs.


The Cavaliers are the favorite in 11AAA through, as they were the only team to run the table.

O’Gorman, Harrisburg and Lincoln are three teams that own winning records. They have established themselves above the rest of the field.

But can one of the three defeat Jefferson?

Harrisburg owns the second best defense and third best scoring offense in the class, making them statically the most likely candidate to upset the Cavs at some point.

Though, O’Gorman just defeated the Tigers last week.

11AAA has a favorite in Jefferson, but there is still a lot of room for a team to step up and try to knock off the Cavs.


The first round has a couple good games to watch, but the top matchup has to Lincoln vs. Brandon Valley.

The two teams played on October 7 and the Patriots needed a late score to grab a 34-30 win. It was quite the contest and if this week’s quarterfinal is half as close, we’ll be in for a good one.


Similar to 11AAA, the 11AA playoff bracket features just one undefeated team, who has separated itself as a favorite to claim the state championship.


Pierre is the top seed and the favorite in the 11AA. The Governors own the top scoring offense and defense in the class. They are averaging a 35 point victory over their opponents this year.

There are only three other teams with positive scoring differentials and that includes Tea Area (+28), Yankton (+7.6) and Sturgis (+3.1).

The Titans took Pierre down to the wire two weeks ago, but ultimately it was the Governors who picked up the 35-30 win.

Tea Area appears to be the top team in contention to knock off the defending champs.


There are two games that I think will be very good contests in the 11AA quarterfinals, but the best game to watch should be the 4 vs. 5 matchup in Yankton.

The Bucks defeated Brookings back on September 30, 38-27. Yankton grabbed the early lead and the Bobcats would close the gap late.

This should be the top game to see in 11AA this week.


11A is one of the deeper classes in the state, as there are eight teams that could get hot and make a run to the DakotaDome.


Dell Rapids did everything they could this season to finish 9-0 and establish themselves as the favorites in the class. However, there are plenty of teams that could contend.

The Quarriers own the top scoring offense in the class at 33.7 points per game. That is just .7 points ahead of West Central and two points ahead of Sioux Falls Christian.

Defensively, Dakota Valley is the top team in the class as they’re allowing just 12.9 points per game. The Panthers are one of four teams that allow 15 points or less per game. West Central, Beresford and Sioux Falls Christian are in that group as well.

If one is looking at statistics alone, the four favorites would be West Central, Dell Rapids, Sioux Falls Christian and Dakota Valley… in that order.

The Trojans are defeating their opponents by 18.7 points per game. That’s the top scoring margin in the class.


I think all four games could be close in 11A, just like many would hope in the quarterfinals of the playoffs.

However, the top game to watch has to be the Canton vs. Beresford matchup.

The two teams played earlier this season in Canton. The Watchdogs picked up a 7-6 win over the C-Hawks. An extra point was the difference. That’s as close as you could script a game.


11B has three undefeated teams remaining, yet they have a strong favorite in the two time defending champions.


Winner owns the second best offense and fourth best scoring defense in 11B, despite playing a loaded schedule.

The Warriors have been dominant over the past three seasons, resulting in two state championships. They’re looking to make it three in a row.

The two teams that jump off the page as teams that could upset Winner, are Aberdeen Roncalli and Elk Point-Jefferson.

The Huskies own the top scoring offense in 11B at 48.9 points per game. Roncalli on the other hand owns the top scoring defense at 2.8 points per game.


The game to watch in 11B has to be the battle of 8-1 teams in Mount Vernon.

Mount Vernon/Plankinton is set to host McCook Central/Montrose at 7 p.m. on Thursday.

The two teams are scoring more than 30 points per game, while allowing less than 14 points per game. That means we could see about any type of football game.


9AA may just be the most perfect quarterfinal in terms of talent and success across the eight teams this season. The quarterfinals feature three undefeated teams, three teams with one loss and just one team with two losses and three losses.

The eight teams own a combined record of 64-8.


When you look at the seven classes, each class has a team that you could label the favorite, but I’m not sure if that’s possible in 9AA.

There are six teams that have been superb all season and two other teams that have been really good.

Elkton-Lake Benton, Wall and Howard are all unbeaten. Hamlin, Hanson and Parkston are 8-1. The other two teams have played good football and find themselves in position to make an upset in the semis.

If one were to try and find a favorite based solely on team scoring statistics, that person could say Wall is the favorite. They own the top scoring offense and defense in the class, though the other teams are right behind the Eagles.


All four games should be fun to watch, but the two that really jump out at me are the Hamlin vs. Hanson and Howard vs. Parkston matchups.

My top game to watch this week in 9AA is the Howard vs. Parkston game. Howard is the defending state champion, while Parkston is coming off a semifinal appearance last fall.

These are two teams that combine for a 17-1 record.


Class 9A has a strong number one team as Warner is the lone unbeaten in the class.


While the Monarchs are the top seeded team, there are a couple other teams to watch in Lyman and Gregory. Those two teams are 8-1 and have showed signs that they could be a strong state title contender in 9A.

The other teams are certainly teams to keep an eye on, but 9A has a couple lower seeds that I think are dangerous.

Castlewood and Canistota are the seven and nine seeds, but they have played better than that this season.

Class 9A has some depth in their quarterfinals.


The four quarterfinal matchups are entertaining in 9A, but the clear game to watch has to be Canistota vs. Warner.

This is a rematch of the 2020 9A state championship, where Canistota outlasted Warner 12-6.

The Hawks have played a loaded schedule this season, thus is why they sit at 5-4, but they’re battle tested and I’m sure Warner knows this matchup, will be a lot tougher than the average 1 vs. 9.


There are two undefeated teams in 9B and some other familiar names that could make some noise this postseason.


All eight teams in the quarterfinals are the usual suspects who we hear from almost every season, but the two that stand out right now are Herreid/Selby Area and Hitchcock-Tulare.

The Wolverines are probably the favorite in the class, but right now, it appears that they’re on a collision course with the Patriots.

However, the other teams will have something to say about that. Especially Dell Rapids St. Mary, who continues to play underdog in the playoffs. They reached the state title as the five seed last year and they’re trying to repeat that task as the ten seed in 2022.


The top game to keep an eye on in 9B has to be the Kadoka Area vs. De Smet matchup. Statically, the two teams are very similar, though they play very different schedules.


KELOLAND will have plenty of coverage from the quarterfinal round of the playoffs, includes highlights from several contests on the KELOLAND SportsZone on Thursday, October 27.

You can see more scores and highlights on the sports page on