TROPHY CASE: How they did it — A look at Grand Meadow's Prep Bowl victories
A look back at Grand Meadow's state football championship game victories
2013: GRAND MEADOW 28, UNDERWOOD 6
Junior running back Landon Jacobson rushed 28 times for 123 yards and a TD to spark Grand Meadow to their first Prep Bowl nine-man title.
Grand Meadow senior quarterback Trenton Bleifus completed 10-of-20 passes for 11 yards and a touchdown and also rushed 15 times for 83 yards and two TDs.
It was the 150th win of Gary Sloan’s career.
Grand Meadow held Underwood (10-4) to a modest 189 total yards. The Rockets had just 95 yards rushing on 39 attempts. Running back Noah Thompson entered with more than 2,000 yards rushing this season, but he was held to 35 yards on 13 attempts.
"It just feels amazing," senior lineman Isaac Tangen said.
• • • • •
2014: GRAND MEADOW 48, EDGERTON/ELLSWORTH 0
It was over before it even started.
Grand Meadow wasn’t going to lose this game. They absolutely refused to accept that possibility.
Landon Jacobson rushed for 143 yards and two first-quarter touchdowns, and Michael Stejskal finished with three touchdown passes as the Superlarks murdered Edgerton/Ellsworth 48-0 in one of the most dominating state championship performances in state history.
Cody Ojulu eclipsed the century mark with 105 receiving yards thanks to a 56-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter and a 21-yard touchdown grab in the third quarter.
“They are really, really good,” Edgerton/Ellsworth coach Andrew Fleischman said. “They deserve everything they get.”
• • • • •
2015: GRAND MEADOW 34, UNDERWOOD 20
Grand Meadow broke open a close game in the final minutes and defeated Underwood 34-20. It was the third consecutive state title for the Superlarks, and they stretched their winning streak to 36 games.
Senior quarterback Michael Stejskal was 12-for-19 passing for 218 yards and three touchdowns, and he also broke a 71-yard run in the fourth quarter for an insurance TD. Stejskal finished with 110 yards rushing.
The score was 14-14 at halftime and Underwood took a 20-14 lead in the third quarter. The Superlarks inched ahead 21-20, then boosted their lead to 28-20 on a 14-yard pass from Stejskal to Terrell Rieken with 3 minutes, 52 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
On the ensuing drive, Underwood was moving the ball but Grand Meadow’s Connor Hartson forced a fumble that was recovered by Rieken. Shortly after, Stejskal raced 71 yards for a clinching touchdown.
Christophor Bain caught five passes for 118 yards and two touchdowns. Zach Myhre added a 10-yard TD run.
Stejskal made big throws time and again, and often in pressure situations. The Superlarks were 5-for-6 on fourth-down conversions.
"I have complete confidence in Michael," Sloan said. "He called a lot of the plays."
• • • • •
2016: GRAND MEADOW 41, CLEVELAND/IMMANUEL LUTHERAN 21
Grand Meadow capped a third consecutive perfect season, beating No. 2 Cleveland/Immanuel Lutheran 41-21 in the Nine-Man state football championship game at U.S. Bank Stadium.
The win gives the Superlarks their fourth consecutive state title and their 50th consecutive victory. The seniors went 55-1 in their four varsity seasons.
Running back Christophor Bain, one of those seniors and a Mr. Football finalist, went out on a high note. He finished with 278 rushing yards on 36 carries and four touchdowns. He finished his career with 99 total touchdowns; his second of the day moved him ahead of Landon Jacobson into first on the all-time touchdown list at Grand Meadow.
"When he was the starter here, I was the fullback most of the time," Bain said of Jacobson, who now plays at Winona State. "I learned, every time we watched film, I was watching him so I could see what he did and try to do it just like he did."
Bain turned in the game's biggest play to start the third quarter.
Cleveland had pulled within 20-14 at halftime, thanks to a pair of long touchdown passes by quarterback Carter Kopet (22-for-34, 238 yards, three TDs), who finished the season with 54 touchdown passes.
But the Superlarks received the ball to start the second half and, on the first play from scrimmage, Bain broke loose up the middle for a 78-yard scoring run and a 27-14 lead. The Clippers never regained the momentum after that.
"That program, you can tell those guys live in the gym," Cleveland's Kopet said of Grand Meadow. "They're all huge and physical. That's what separates them from anyone else. And they hunt for contact."
In addition to their 50th straight win and fourth consecutive title, Grand Meadow also became the first high school team to win a state title in U.S. Bank Stadium, the new home of the Minnesota Vikings. Grand Meadow also won state titles at the old Metrodome and TCF Bank Stadium on the University of Minnesota campus.
"This is a beautiful place to play," Bain said, "but like coach always says, this is a business trip and we were here to play a game."