HS FBall: Shiloh Christian thrilled to be back in Dakota Bowl

For just the second time in school history, Shiloh Christian football will play for a state championship.

Canaan Fagerland's interception with under a minute left in the semifinals, sent Shiloh back to the Dakota Bowl for the first time since 2014.

"It was a pretty crazy feeling," Fagerland said. "After the game, obviously, I was super sore. I had to take a couple of ice baths."

There are no varsity players from the team that went three years ago. The only hold over is head coach Funnon Barker.

"When you get there and it's on TV," Barker said. "There are a lot of things that are there, that aren't there during a regular Friday night game."

This year, Shiloh Christian went 8-1 during the regular season. The Skyhawks only loss came in the Region 5 championship, the defeat snapped a 40-game regular season win streak.

"I don't ever think losing is a good thing," Barker said. "I think what the loss [to New Salem-Almont-Glen Ullin] did was expose somethings we need to do better. I think it was a wake-up call to our kids."

However, the players feel, the loss helped relieve the pressure of a undefeated season and allowed Shiloh to refocus.

"We came into the playoffs knowing that we can be beat," senior defensive end Bartholomew Ogbu said. "So we approached every game like it could be our last game."

With just 48 minutes of game action separating the Skyhawks from the school's first ever football state championship, the feat is hard not to think about.

"Being able to make it to the state championship game," Fagerland said, "but to win it would be unreal."

"We as seniors know that that's the goal going down to Fargo," Ogbu said. "We're not going to go there just to participate. We are going they to try to win it."

Shiloh plays Wyndmere-Lidgerwood to kick off the the Dakota Bowl on Friday at 9 a.m. in Fargo.

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