Chatfield, Lourdes punch Dome tickets
Chatfield doesn't usually turn to its fullback for its primary source of offense.
But it did Friday night in the state Class AA football quarterfinals at Rochester Regional Sports Stadium, and it worked beautifully.
With usual star runner Jacob Neis being bottled up by the Jackson County Central defense, the Gophers got a season-best 124 yards rushing and a touchdown from junior fullback Alex Bradt.
That, combined with a stifling Chatfield defense — one that forced four Huskies turnovers — lifted the Gophers to a one-sided 32-6 win.
Chatfield is at state for the first time since 1999. Friday's victory puts them into a semifinal game at the Metrodome next Friday morning.
• Lourdes was tied with Fairmont midway through the third quarter but scored two touchdowns by the end of the period and held Fairmont scoreless the rest of the way to win 28-14, at Burnsville High School.
The Eagles weathered a balanced attack by the Cardinals, countering with a strong rushing game of its own (300 yards), led by Kane Cartens with 186 yards on 25 carries.
Lourdes will be playing in the Metrodome for the fourth time in nine seasons.
• Kasson-Mantorville knows how tough state tournament losses can feel.
Friday night in Woodbury, it happened for the second straight year in the state Class AAAA quarterfinals, this time with the KoMets bowing late to Holy Angles, 21-14.
Unranked Holy Angels snapped a 14-all tie by scoring the winning touchdown with 24 seconds left in regulation.
K-M had led 14-7 going into the fourth quarter in a game that was dominated defensively by both teams.
• Pine Island's dream season came to an end. But judging from the early part of its state Class AA quarterfinal game with Maple Lake, it didn't look like it was going to.
The Panthers built a quick 10-0 lead. But it didn't hold up as Maple Lake took over in the second half and walked away a 28-10 winner in Richfield.
Pine Island was playing in its first state tournament since 1997 and was coming off a pair of 1-8 seasons.
• A fifth area team, Grand Meadow, plays at noon Saturday in the nine-man state quarterfinals, against Mountain Lake Area, at Southwest State University in Marshall.
• On Thursday, Big Nine Conference champion Owatonna romped 32-0 over Apple Valley in the Class AAAAA state quarterfinals.