The Sandhills/Thedford Knights will play Bruning Davenport Shickley Friday for the Class D2 state football championship. It will be the first state championship appearance for Sandhills/Thedford as a co-op program. Sandhills played for the Class D1 title in 1985 and finished as runner-up to Bancroft-Rosalie that season. The Knights are now 12-0 on the season following a thrilling 36-26 victory over Falls City Sacred Heart in the state semifinals last Friday. The NSAA announced last week that this year’s state championship games would not be played in Lincoln at Memorial Stadium and instead would be hosted by the higher seeded team in each class. Therefore, Friday’s final will be hosted by BDS and will be played in Shickley. Sandhills/Thedford head coach Josh Deines told KCNI/KBBN Sports that the accomplishment of making it to the championship game started to sink in on Monday.
The Knights have put up some impressive numbers this season especially with their running game averaging 329 yards per game and have rushed for nearly 4,000 total yards this season. Dane Pokorny has helped lead the way averaging 164 yards rushing per game. Pokorny put up amazing numbers in the state semifinal finishing with 309 yards on 41 carries and 5 touchdowns. Sandhills/Thedford has put their team talent and athletic ability on display each and every week but coach Deines said equally impressive is the team’s mental approach to the game and the ability to understand the game and make adjustments.
S/T will face a BDS team who is undefeated this season and will be making their fourth state championship appearance as a co-op. BDS was the Class D1 runner-up in 2014, the D1 champion in 2015, and the D2 champion in 2017. The Eagles are big and strong up front. Coach Deines said that the key offensively will be the ability to handle their size up front and get to the second level.
Friday’s game will be broadcast on KBBN 95.3 FM and kbbn.com. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m.
FULL INTERVIEW WITH S/T HEAD COACH JOSH DEINES