The state high school club soccer tournament begins today in Rapid City with the Lincoln boys shooting for their fifth Class AA title in six years.
The tourney continues Friday and ends Saturday with four championships: ‘A’ and ‘AA’ girls at 3 p.m. CT with ‘A’ and ‘AA’ boys at 5:30.
The defending champion Patriots (6-1-3) are the No. 2 seed. They will face No. 7 Pierre at 3 p.m. CT in a first-round game. Spearfish (9-1) is seeded No. 1 and will face No. 8 Brookings at 5:30. Spearfish beat Lincoln 2-1 in the season opener Aug. 17 at Spearfish. Spearfish’s only loss was to Washington, 3-2 on Aug. 25 in Spearfish.
In Class AA girls, unbeatens Roosevelt and Lincoln are seeded No. 1 and No. 2. Both teams are 8-0-2. They tied 1-1 during the regular season. Lincoln also tied Rapid City Central 1-1, while Roosevelt tied Pierre 0-0. Lincoln meets No. 7 Brandon Valley at 3 p.m., while Roosevelt will face No. 8 Yankton at 5:30.
In Class A boys, Vermillion (9-0) is the No. 1 seed with Harrisburg (8-1) No. 2. Vermillion beat the Tigers 2-1 on Sept. 11 in Vermillion. Harrisburg meets No. 7 Custer at 3 p.m., while Vermillion will face No. 8 Hot Springs at 5:30.
In Class A girls, West Central is the two-time defending champion, but the Trojans are seeded third in the four-team bracket. No. 1 Harrisburg will face No. 4 Sturgis at 3 p.m. Friday with No. 2 Belle Fourche facing West Central at 5:30.
Last year’s ‘AA’ girls finalists (Aberdeen Central and O’Gorman) and ‘A’ boys finalists (Sioux Falls Christian and Groton) competed in the inaugural South Dakota High School Activities Association-sanctioned state tourney that was played last weekend in Aberdeen.
High school soccer has been administered as a club sport by the South Dakota State Soccer Association since 1997. Although soccer is now sanctioned by the SDHSAA, the teams playing in this SDSSA club tourney are teams that have not yet been able to gain sanctioning for their school.
There were 16 sanctioned teams this year (nine girls, six boys) and 37 SDSSA club teams (11 each in ‘AA’ boys and girls, 10 in ‘A’ boys and five in ‘A’ girls).