Head Coach Bill Post showing a little smile during the second half. Post will be going for his first state title Thursday. (Photo by Rick Fromm)
Head Coach Bill Post showing a little smile during the second half. Post will be going for his first state title Thursday. (Photo by Rick Fromm)
They've got that championship feeling.

And they've got the championship play to back it up.

The Class 3A No. 1-ranked Decorah football team is headed back to the state championship title game for the second time in two years after having its way with No. 3 Williamsburg (11-2), 48-7, Thursday night at the UNI-Dome in the semifinals.

Standing in the way of redemption from a year ago is No. 5 Sioux City Bishop Heelan (12-1). The Crusaders made it look easy in the other semifinal battle Thursday, taking down No. 2 and previously unbeaten Grinnell (12-1) 42-14.

Bishop Heelan has won three state titles (1975, '82 and '08), mostly notably defeating Decorah in the 2008 finals [see sidebar for details].

Decorah has its eyes on the prize of a fifth state title (1974, '87, '88 and '89) and the first of the Bill Post era. The Vikes have come home as runners-up in 1997, '04, '08 and '11, all with Post at the helm.

Against Williamsburg Thursday, the Vikes had everything clicking, with the defense pounding the Raider ball carriers, the offense doing whatever it pleased and even Post showing the occasional smile as he watched his team score on nine straight possessions.

"The guys played with a lot of determination and heart," said Post. "It was just amazing."

For the complete story and additional photos, pick up Decorah Newspapers at one of the many convenient locations throughout Decorah and Winneshiek County. Or, for 34 cents an issue, subscribe to Decorah Newspapers by calling (563) 382-4221.