1A football preview: Goodhue hopes to win rematch with Fillmore Central

If you're a fan of hard-nosed, defensive football, then you should make a point of attending Saturday's Section One, Class A championship game pitting No. 1 seed Fillmore Central against No. 3 seed Goodhue.

If history is any indication, this one is going to be a bruiser.

The two teams met Sept. 4, with Fillmore Central claiming a 12-9 victory despite gaining just 154 total yards. The Falcons' lone touchdown came in the first half a 4-yard drive following a fumble recovery, and their other points came on a field goal and a safety after a botched pitch by Goodhue.

The Wildcats moved the ball fairly effectively throughout the game and made several trips inside the Falcons 20-yard line, but three turnovers and nearly 100 yards in penalties were too much for them to overcome.

Goodhue, led by senior quarterback Jacob Pasch and senior running back Garett Huemann, bounced back to win its next three games, averaging nearly 50 points per contest, before dropping two consecutive tight games, first to still-unbeaten Lewiston-Altura, and then falling to Rushford-Peterson.


The Wildcats avenged the loss to R-P on Tuesday in the section semifinals, scoring a last-minute touchdown to claim a 21-20 win.

Goodhue head coach Tony Poncelet was succinct when asked about the keys to turning the tables on Fillmore Central this time around.

"Ball security and defense," he said. "In our first meeting, we had a couple costly turnovers and didn't finish our drives."

Fillmore Central also lost to Lewiston-Altura — the Falcons' only loss of the year — but it was a 45-13 blowout, the only time all season that Fillmore Central has given up more than 14 points.

The Falcons feature a balanced offensive attack, led by senior tailback Tyson Ristau and junior quarterback Riley Means. Speedy wideout Trace Tollefson is a threat both as a receiver and a runner, and in Tuesday's semifinal win over Wabasha-Kellogg, he had six catches for 226 yards and two TDs.

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