From rivals to linemates at the Shrine Bowl: Stahl, Knutson, Terrill to start on d-line
MAYVILLE, N.D. — For the past two seasons, Nick Stahl was on the opposite side of the Grand Forks intra-city football rivalry with Brady Terrill and Aaron Knutson. Stahl was a starting defensive lineman for Red River High School, while Terrill and Knutson were two-way starters on the line for Central.
"For Red River, it (the rivalry) was pretty fun,'' said Stahl, whose Roughriders beat Central 48-6 in the 2015 season and 30-6 last season.
"It wasn't the best for us,'' Knutson said.
Now the trio will be lining up together in one unit in their final high school football game.
Terrill at tackle and Stahl and Knutson at the ends will start on the defensive line for the 11-man East team in the annual North Dakota Shrine Bowl, to be played Sunday at the Alerus Center. The 11-man game will start at 4 p.m., followed by the 9-man game.
For the players, the rivalry is in the past. "It gets to the point where we've graduated and that (rivalry) doesn't matter any more,'' Terrill said.
The trio will be starting despite Central winning just one game in the last two seasons and Red River going 4-6 last season.
"To be playing is a big honor, especially when our team won only one game last year and none two years ago,'' Knutson said. With those struggles in the win-loss column, ''we didn't know if they'd notice us when they picked players.''
But the Grand Forks linemen, who will be joined by Carrington's Bradee Schroeder on the starting defensive front, showed their skills when Shrine practices began here this week.
"We were looking to see who fits where and (Stahl, Knutson and Terrill) stepped up on the defensive line,'' East 11-man coach Scott Grochow of Rugby said. "They've been consistent. They give us some length, some size and quickness. And they're aggressive.''
Aggressive? "I expected to be playing offense,'' said Terrill, a state wrestling champion as a senior. "But it doesn't matter where I'm playing, as long as I'm hitting somebody.''
This is the final football game for Terrill. Stahl and Knutson will become foes again, as Stahl has signed to play at University of Mary in Bismarck and Knutson at Minnesota-Moorhead. Both programs are Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference members.
Stahl said he hasn't mentioned Red River's domination of the Grand Forks rivalry in recent years. Looking ahead, he's going to a program coming off a 1-10, while Moorhead was 7-4.
"They can come right back at me with the Moorhead-Mary thing,'' Stahl said.
Here are the rosters for the Shrine teams:
Grand Forks Central: Aaron Knutson, Brady Terrill; Grand Forks Red River: Nick Stahl, Will Rakowski, Zach Gutterud; EGF Senior High: Pierre Piche; Polk County West: Paul Gapp, Pelon Pruneda; Grafton: Jason Garza; Park River/Fordville-Lankin: Jackson Hankey, Adam Johnson; Larimore: Brody Wagner, Caleb Hofer, Elijah Holter, Royce Verkuehlen; Hillsboro-Central Valley: Luke Hastings; West Fargo Sheyenne: Hayden Reynolds, Jesse Shorma; West Fargo: Haboniman Simon, Zach Ferguson; Fargo South: Zander Luckoski; Fargo North: Adam Hummel; Fargo Davies: Alex York; Fargo Shanley: Kolby Johnson, Matthew Burd; Rugby: Anders Johnson; Carrington: Bradee Schroeder; Harvey-Wells County: Trevor Schimke; Ellendale-Edgeley-Kulm: Talen Walks, Westen Ellingson, Luke Wertz; Central Cass: Tate Camas, Andrew Roden; Northern Cass: Brendan Salander; Kindred: Brock Benson, Derek Houska, Ethan Lingen, Nicky Zink.
Coaches—Scott Grochow, Rugby, assisted by Vyrn Muir, Red River, Matt Crane, Kindred, and Jon Schiele, Ellendale-Edgeley-Kulm.
Devils Lake: Hunter Fee; Roseau: Parker Janicke; Central Dakota: David Fletcher; Bismarck High: Lucas Butts, Preston Mayer; Bismarck Century: Seth Braun, Jacob Rader, Luke Little; Bismarck Legacy: Tyler Boone, Brian Bonnet, Derek Wax, Kaden Stewart; Bismarck St. Mary's: Chauncey Turner, Ian Brown; Minot Bishop Ryan: Cole Dauphinais, Jaxon Lundeen, Jordan Will; Minot High: Colton Cook, Je-Mario Jones; Williston: Coy Turnquist, Rowan Horswill; Des Lacs-Burlington: Rylan Bachmeier, Tanner Johnson, Dylan Schestler; Maple Valley-Enderlin: Sean Beilke; Beulah: Damian Eslinger, Matt Schnabel, Reece Hoherz; Killdeer: Rope Smith, Dillon Jepson; Nedrose: Dawson Brekhus; Valley City: Eli Allen; Velva-Sawyer: Justin Helseth; Southern McLean: Koby Hansen; Breckenridge: Carson Yaggie, Steven Lipp.
Coaches: Mark Gibson, Bismarck High, assisted by Dan Smrekar, St. Mary's, Bret Johnsrud, Hazen, and Matt Wiedler, Velva.
Thompson: Calen Schwabe, Adam Diedrich, Brett Sutter-Hegg; North Border: Andrew Lee; Finley-Sharon/Hope-Page: John Lee; Clearbrook-Gonvick: Tristan Bakke; Win-E-Mac: Alec Kiecker; Ada-Borup: Casey Willison; New Rockford-Sheyenne: Chance Brenno, Josh McKnight; Wyndmere-Lidgerwood: Aaron Bell, Alix Wisnewski; Richland: Austin Roob, Cooper Lingen, Jake Ihland; Shiloh Christian: Nick Pfaff, Nick Glasser, Trevor Mehlhoff; Kidder County: Brandon Dewald, James Thompson; Hankinson: Cody Mauch; Linton-H-M-B: Cole Vander Laan; Napoleon-Gackle-Streeter: Devin Weigel, Jake Bakken; LaMoure-Litchville-Marion: Landon Smith, Levi Hirschkorn; South Border: Tyler Kuntz.
Coaches—Brady Schwab, Thompson, assisted by Scott Strenge, Wyndmere-Lidgerwood, Jason Monilaws, Hankinson, and Kelley McCleary, Napoleon-G-S.
North Prairie: Brody Cahill, Carson Wilkes, Garrett Munro, Jared Loing; Stephen-Argyle: Isaac Mills; Kittson County Central: Spencer Billings; St. John: Tyrall Defender; Norman Co. East/U-H: Brady Sirjord; Richardton-Taylor-Hebron: Adrian Hauck, Ethan Kuntz, Kyle Kuntz; New Salem-Almont-Glen Ullin: Bailey Mormon, Noah Thiel, T.D. Norton, Tanner Slag; Mohall-Lansford-Sherwood: Berkley Santos, Statler Olson, Talon Thompson; Mott-Regent: Brady Wegh; Kenmare-Bowbells-BC: Caden Mau, Cody St. Croix, Kolton Jesz; Towner-Granville-Upham: Cole Bethke, Kolter Schell; Grant County-Flasher: Connor Marion; Beach: Dawson Bishop, Ray Wegner.
Coaches—Steve Kleinjan, New Salem-A-GU, assisted by Patrick Wilkes, North Prairie, Mike Zier, Beach, and Travis Olson, Richardton-T-H