Home playoff game on the line for Mounds View

A home playoff game is very the likely the reward if the Mounds View High School football team can pull off an upset of sixth-ranked Cretin-Derham Hall this week. A loss probably drops the Mustangs out of the Section 4-6A top four and sends the Mustangs on the road in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs.

A year ago, Mounds View started the season 4-1 but lost their final three games to finish 4-4. That left the Mustangs as the sixth seed in the section and they went on to lose to Edina in the first round of the post-season.

Mounds View is 5-2 heading into the final game of the regular season and one spot ahead of Stillwater in the Class 6A QRF rankings. Stillwater closes out the regular season against Forest Lake so a win for the Ponies is very likely.

A win over Cretin-Derham Hall should be enough to keep Mounds View ahead of Stillwater in the battle for the fourth seed in the section. The top four teams in each of the four Class 6A sections earn first-round home games.

Mounds View avoided losing back-to-back games by beating Woodbury 28-26 last week. The victory assured the Mustangs (5-2) of having a winning regular season record.

Woodbury, one of the teams responsible for the Mustangs  losing streak last year, got off to a fast start by returning the opening kickoff 65 yards for a touchdown. It was actually the second kickoff of the game after Mounds View kicked the first one out of bounds.

Mounds View answered with a 25-yard touchdown run from quarterback Ryan Nickel later in the first quarter.

Woodbury regained the lead in the second quarter on a 61-yard touchdown pass but failed to convert the point-after try.

A blocked punt late in the second quarter set up Mounds View’s next score. Jeff Galdamez blocked the Royals’ punt and returned it to the one-yard line. Nickel then put the Mustangs ahead to stay on a one-yard touchdown run.

Following a scoreless third quarter, Mounds View scored a pair of touchdowns that appeared to put the game out of reach. Jack Graham’s one-yard touchdown run was set up by a 43-yard pass play from Nickel to Max Janes.

Mounds View added another one-yard touchdown run by Graham to take a 15-point lead with four minutes to play. 

Woodbury wasn’t done, however. The Royals scored on a 15-yard pass with three minutes to play but a failed two-point conversion attempt left Woodbury trailing by nine points.

The Royals got to within two points after a bad snap on a Mounds View punt set up a three-yard Woodbury touchdown run. The extra point made it a two-point game but Mounds View was able to hold on over the final 90 seconds.

Neither team was overly effective on offense. Mounds View racked up 213 yards and got 137 of them on the ground. Woodbury threw for 174 yards but ran for only 22.

 

Brian Meyers can be reached at bmeyers@lillienews.com or 651-748-7819. Follow him on Twitter @BMeyersNews.

 

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