The recent rise in area COVID cases has led to the Anoka-Hennepin School District moving to distance learning and, by extension, a Nov. 2 shutdown of sports programs at Andover, Anoka, Blaine, Champlin Park and Coon Rapids. The looming shutdown means Friday’s game might very well be the season-ender for Champlin Park (2-1, 2-0).
The No. 6-6A Rebels, who fell 35-20 to Wayzata in last year’s Class 6A state title game, lost 31-13 to No. 5-6A St. Michael-Albertville last Friday in a hastily arranged matchup after initial opponent Anoka was forced to cancel because of COVID concerns. Junior quarterback Cade Fitzgerald ran for one touchdown and threw for another in the loss.
Rosemount (1-0, 1-0), meanwhile is scrambling to get in as many games as it can, scheduling a rare Monday game against No. 4-6A Woodbury before it plays the Rebels for what will be the Irish’s third game in a week. The Irish, who lost 34-7 to Champlin Park in the Class 6A state quarterfinals last year, opened their season last Friday with a 35-0 pounding of Eagan after sitting out the first two weeks while in quarantine. Rosemount senior Christian Graske ran for two touchdowns and caught a 75-yard TD in the win over Eagan.