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Big rematches set


Mon, Nov 4th, 2013
Posted in All Sports

At the start of the season, Sub-Section 1A-East volleyball and Section 1AA football each had a pair of teams seemingly destined for each other. On the volleyball court, Mabel-Canton and Fillmore Central ended last season with an epic 1A East semifinal affair. Both teams began 2013 ranked in state (M-C #5, FC #10). FC rose as high as #1 (and fluctuated between it and #2) while M-C was a steady top 10 team. Each won their respective conference titles. On the football field, Caledonia and Chatfield entered 2013 as the top two teams in the new SFA Blue Division. A week one collision, with the #1 Warriors coming out on top 19-18, only escalated the plot. The teams finished one (Caledonia, 8-0) and two (Chatfield, 7-1) in conference. The four teams have been working all season towards a collision with each other, battles that are now officially set.

FC and M-C Cruise to Finals

The #2 Falcons and #7 Cougars both progressed dramalessly through their early round opponents. M-C (2-seed, 31-2) hosted Houston (7-seed, 17-11) in the quarters. The ‘Canes went to standout senior OH Abbey Loken early (six first set kills). But a 5-0 M-C run (keyed by a trio of Lydia Geving aces) turned an 8-7 lead into a 13-7 edge. Houston couldn’t recover and fell 25-17. M-C then dominated the next two games (25-11, 25-9) for the 3-0 sweep. Geving (7 kills, 5 aces, 5 digs), Sara Lind (10 kills, 3 aces), Belle Sand (9 kills, 11 digs, 2 aces, 2 blocks), and Carly McCabe (26 assists, 3 aces) were a fearsome foursome. Loken (8 kills, 14 digs) and junior S Alexa Horihan (16 assists) led Houston. The Cougars had 18 aces, Houston none. The ‘Canes finish the season at 18-11.

Fillmore Central (1-seed, 29-2), meanwhile, handled another SEC team, 8-seed Spring Grove (19-10), in straight sets (25-11, 25-11, 25-17) in their quarterfinal. Taylor Case (22 kills, 13 digs, 3 aces) and Morgan Malley (33 assists) led FC. None of that was news. Senior OH Tori Peterson’s return (9 kills) was. Peterson missed a couple weeks per a hip injury. Her return certainly bolsters their attack. They are at full strength again.

In the semis, M-C faced off with 3-seed 11th ranked Goodhue (21-7), led by former Lanesboro volleyball coach Lindsey Mace. The Cougars got a statement from 6’0” senior MH Sara Lind in game one. Lind had a trio of kills, two of the free ball variety, that helped spark a 6-0 M-C run (up 10-6). A 5-0 run shortly thereafter (up 16-8) helped the Cougars to a 25-16 win. In game two, they seemed well on their way again (up 12-5), but a 5-0 Goodhue run gave them a 16-15 lead. M-C regrouped, scoring the next three points (up 18-16). Goodhue closed to down one three times (22-21, 23-22, 24-23), but never forced a tie. M-C got the 25-23 win. In game three, the Wildcats took a good lead (13-7), only for M-C to score eight of the next nine points (to lead 15-14). With it 16-all, M-C scored four straight, and then won 25-20 for the 3-0 sweep. Lind (11 kills), Sand (11 kills, 15 digs), Geving (6 kills), McCabe (29 assists, 14 digs, 4 kills, 3 aces), and libero Christine Lee (20 digs, 3 aces) showed off their senior credentials; the same for Goodhue’s Mikayla Miller (13 kills, 19 digs) and Mikalya Tipcke (29 assists, 7 digs).

FC’s semifinal opponent was 5-seed Lewiston-Altura (17-14). The Cardinals (behind Taylor Daley’s 38 kills and 32 digs) felled 4-seed Wabasha-Kellogg in the quarters in a mild upset. A second set of Falcons would not fall. The Card’s went to Daley early, and FC junior MH Sammi Bakke sent a statement, sandwiching two blocks around a free ball kill in succession. The points were part of a 5-0 Falcon run that put FC up 7-2. Short of a couple meaningless late game let downs, FC plowed straight ahead to 25-12, 25-20, and 25-16 victories. The Cardinals held just a single lead (2-1) and the match saw just two ties (1-1, 2-2), all in game one. FC was the first to 20 all three games, by a wide margin (20-9/22-9, 20-13/22-13, 20-11/23-11). They dominated behind Case (15 kills, 10 digs), Bakke (9 kills, 2 aces, 1.5 blocks), Malley (5 kills, 30 assists, 3 aces), and Sara Schultz (13 digs, 19-20 serve receive, 12-12 serving). Taylor Daley led L-A with 11 kills. Maren Daley had 17 assists and 8 digs. For the Sub-Section title, it will be a heavyweight battle of 33-2 M-C versus 31-2 FC.

The Neis Anti-Venom

For the second consecutive year, the Chatfield football team had to go through a ranked opponent, on the road, to get to a Section final game. A year ago, the Gophers downed 6th ranked L-A 29-12. This year, Chatfield (3-seed, 8-1, #9 in Class AA) trekked to Dodge Center to take on SFA White champion Triton (2-seed, 8-1, #10 in Class AA). Unlike in 2012, when Jeff Johnson’s boys jumped all over L-A 22-0 in the first half, the Goph’s had to wear down Triton. The only first half touchdown was a Nate Skare 63-yard strike to Jayme LaPlante. Triton’s Ethan Otterbein (31-yard field goal) posted the other score. Chatfield led 7-3 at intermission. Jake Neis had 10 carries for 48 yards. In the second half, those two things changed. Midway through the third quarter, Neis burst through a big hole and sprinted 40 yards to pay-dirt (13-3 Gophers). On Chatfield’s next offensive play, it was did on the burst, the big hole, the sprint, the Neis, and the TD (49 yards). The runs broke open the game and put Chatfield up 20-3. Skare (47 yards) and Alex Haffner (5 yards) added TD runs in the 4th quarter, making the final score 35-3. Neis finished with 18 carries for 194 and 2 TD’s, aided by great blocking by the Gopher line. The Chatfield ‘D’ stood out after that, limiting the snakes to a slow slither offensively (150 total yards). Chatfield will again play Caledonia for the Section title (at WSU). The Warriors trailed L-A 7-6 in the 3rd quarter, before getting the 20-7 victory.

Gopher VB Eyes

Sub-Section Title

The last two seasons, Chatfield volleyball has made it to the Sub-Section 1AA East final. Each time, they ran into powerful Caledonia and bowed in straight sets. That won’t happen this year. The Gophers are the powerful team in Sub-Section 1AA East, the top seed (22-8). They made quick work of their first two opponents.

Lake City (8-seed, 4-21) was Chatfield’s quarterfinal foe. The Tigers made the long drive down US highways 63 and 52 to fall in straight sets (25-8, 25-17, 25-11). The Gopher’s got 11 kills from Brook Irish and 10 from Maddy Kammer. Setter Gabrielle Salisbury was excellent with 25 assists, 8 digs, and 4 aces (all led the team). Kirsten Keefe (5 kills, 8 digs, 2 aces, 16-16 serving) and Alex Duxbury (6 digs, 3 aces) also did their parts. The Chosen Valley girls then headed up US 52 to Rochester for a semifinal meeting with St. Charles (4-seed, 8-20). The Saints were the only team other than Fillmore Central to take a conference set from Chatfield. But, in spotting the Gophers 10-4, 6-2, and 10-4 leads, they didn’t put themselves in a position to recreate such a result. Chatfield cruised again to 25-10, 25-18, and 25-16 victories. Kammer (11 kills) and Irish (10 kills) again supplied the heavy offense. Salisbury had 21 assists, 4 aces, and 4 setter kills. Alex Duxbury led Chat with 13 digs.

To win the Sub-Section, Chatfield won’t have to down a team nicknamed Warriors. Dover-Eyota (3-seed), behind 3-Rivers kill-leader Brandi Blattner (28 kills, 26 digs), mildly upset 2-seed Caledonia in five sets (21-25, 25-17, 25-12, 21-25, 15-13). It will be Chatfield (24-8) and D-E (16-13) for the 1AA East title. The Gophers downed the Eagles 3-0 (25-12, 25-23, 25-10) in the final league game on October 21.

Bance, O’Hare, Gomez, Olson Head to State

Four county Cross-Country runners, two from Chatfield, one from L/FC, and one from L-A/R-P, are heading to state. Chatfield junior Christian Bance finished third individually behind Lourdes’ Ian Torchia and Cotter’s Matt Schrupp. Torchia (16:07.1) ran away with first, while Schrupp (16:53.4) was better than Bance (16:58.1) just a few days after the opposite was true. L-A/R-P’S Austin O’Hare finished 5th. O’Hare, a senior, makes his second trip (2011) to state in cross country. His team had a great showing finishing 4th behind P-E-M (1st), Cotter (2nd), and Lake City (3rd). Ryan Ruberg (20th), Dylan Linder (25th), and Hunter Herber (29th) finished in the top 30, as did Chatfield Gopher Justin Friedrich (27th). The Goph’s finished 7th, L/FC 14th, and Kingsland 18th (of 22). On the girls’ side of things, L/FC freshman Kiera Olson and Chatfield junior Karen Gomez finished 6th and 7th respectively. They earned trips to state. It’s Gomez’s third birth. She’s gone the last two years (best finish, 43rd as a freshman in 2011). Bailey O’Hare (LARP) finished 20th and Leah Ruen (L/FC) 30th. Distance running sensation Emi Trost of Cannon Falls was Section 1A champion by 58 seconds. Team-wise, Dover-Eyota and Lake City finished 1-2. L/FC (12th), L-A/R-P (14th), Kingsland (16th), and Chatfield (17th) were all in the bottom half. The 5000m and 4000m events took place at Northern Hills Golf Course in Rochester.

Football

10-22:

(1A and 9-man Quarterfinals):

•Goodhue (5-seed, 3-5) 12, FC (4-seed, 3-5) 13 (FC: Bryce Whitehill 10-16, 100 yards, 2 TD’s passing; Logan Masters 4-59-TD receiving; Jordan Miller 8-yard TD reception. G: Tyler Schumacher 4-21, 99 yards, TD, 2 INT’s passing, 3-116-TD receiving, 10-41 rushing; Jacob Pasch passing TD; Sam McNamara 3-56-TD receiving. Goodhue drove 78 yards in the final two minutes to the Falcon six (1st down, 0:24 left). On 4th and goal from the five (0:03), Schumacher did a QB sprint-out. He had one-foot in the end zone, but Logan Masters jarred the ball loose. Josh Jones recovered it and returned it 50-plus yards to end the game. A Collin Bennett PAT in the 1st quarter was the difference.)

•Southland (7-seed, 2-6) 47, R-P (2-seed, 6-2) 20 (Trojans played without multiple starters. QB Jonnie Koenen was intercepted four times. Rebels had two defensive TD’s and a special teams TD. R-P finishes the season 6-3)

•Kingsland (8-seed, 0-8) 6, #3 Blooming Prairie (1-seed, 8-0) 42 (BP: John Rumpza 14-14, 230 yards, 4 TD’s passing; Cole Sunde 3-83-TD receiving. K: Quinn Larson 23-yard TD pass to Marcus Plaehn. Knights season ends at 0-9)

•St. Charles (6-seed, 2-6) 20, #9 in AA Chatfield (3-seed, 7-1) 68 (Chatfield had nine players score TD’s headed by Jayme LaPlante’s two receiving scores. Gophers scored 27 points in each of the first two quarters to lead 54-0 at halftime)

•Houston (5-seed, 3-5) 27, M-C (4-seed, 4-4) 18 (H: Dylan Lee 9-42-TD rushing, 88-yard KOR TD; Peter Jergenson 15-130 rushing; Sam Mlsna 6-39-TD rushing; Brady Ramin-Pierce 17-yard FR TD. M-C: Hunter Johnson 26-120-2 TDs rushing; Donnie Lind 8-91 receiving; Collin O’Bieglo 12-27, 141 yards, TD passing; Mac Nelson 20-yard TD reception. M-C had three offensive TD’s, Houston two, but the Ramin-Pierce FR TD and the Lee KOR TD were huge. M-C’s season finishes at 4-5)

•Lyle/Pacelli (7-seed, 1-7) 34, Lanesboro (2-seed, 7-1) 60 (L: Tylar Miller 6-146-3 TD’s rushing; Niko Anderson 6-90-2 TD’s rushing; Gabe Decker 7-80-2 TD’s rushing. Burros rolled to 53-14 halftime edge)

10-26 (1A and 9-man Semifinals)

•FC (4-seed, 4-5) 0, #3 BP (1-seed, 9-0) 29 (FC: B. Whitehill 9-28, 69 yards, 4 INT’s. BP: J. Rumpza 13-29, 267 yards TD passing, rushing TD; Jake Decker 11-35-2 TD’s rushing; C. Sunde 7-143-TD receiving. Falcon’s season ends at 4-6)

•Grand Meadow (3-seed, 8-1) 35, Lanesboro (2-seed, 8-1) 6 (L: N. Anderson 23-131-TD rushing. GM: Landon Jacobson 27-175-4 TD’s rushing; Trenton Blieifus 19-108-TD rushing; Cody Ojulu 3 INT’s. Anderson’s TD made it 6-0 Burros, but GM scored 35 unanswered after that (21-point 2nd quarter). TO’s: Lanes 6, GM 2. Burros season finishes at 8-2)

•Houston (5-seed, 4-5) 6, #9 Spring Grove (1-seed, 8-1) 56 (H: P. Jergenson 12-43, TD rushing. SG: Caleb Happel 28-263-5 TD’s rushing. TO’s: Houston 6, SG 2. Houston’s season ends at 4-6)

Volleyball

10-24:

(1A East Quarterfinals):

•R-P (6-seed) 1, Goodhue (3-seed) 3 • 16-25, 25-23, 17-25, 19-25 (R-P: Kendra Crawford 25 digs; Kate Mackenzie 6 kills. G: M. Tipcke 7 kills, 39 assists, 22 digs, 6 aces, 2 blocks; M. Miller 17 kills, 18 digs, 6 aces. Trojans finish season at 15-13)

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