Killdeer finished up its scrimmage in Stanley Friday, getting its only chance to prepare for opening its season at home tonight against a former rival – the Hazen Bison.
For Hazen, playing its old rival Friday at 7 p.m. may be the easiest game on its schedule.
The Bison were moved into the AA division and have already made the top five in one recent poll of the AA Division.
Friday’s game at the Killdeer Sports Complex will also be the season opener for the Bison, before they move on to host Wahpeton Sept. 6 in their home opener.
The Bison have a roster of 46 players this fall.
They will follow the Wahpeton game facing Kindred (Sept. 13) before hosting Valley City (Sept. 20) and rival Beulah (Sept. 27).
According to one set of preseason rankings, the Bison will be playing ranked teams for most of the team’s schedule.
Kindred is ranked third, while Valley City is fifth on the list and Beulah is fourth in the AA preseason rankings listed for the division on MaxPreps.
Tough road ahead
Looking ahead, the Cowboys will have some tough opponents on the schedule.
The newcomers to the A Division Region 4 include New Salem.
A playoff team at the nine-man level, the Holsteins have already logged a win over Tioga by a 43-15 margin.
The Holsteins are ranked sixth in the state in their new AA Diviision home.
Another necomer to the Region 4 is Shiloh Christian, which already seventh in the state rankings after a 34-6 win over Harvey-Fessenden-Bowden.
The path to a playoff berth in Region 4 has some very large obstacles.
Two teams, Bowman County and Dickinson Trinity, made it to the semifinals.
In addition, New Salem/Almont/Glen Ullin, Richardton/Taylor and Shiloh Christian each made it to the nine-man playoffs in 2018.
The Cowboys have approximately 22 players out for the team this year, the school’s athletic director said recently.