Tartan’s recent emergence as a perennial metro power — the Titans have won 22 of their last 26 games — is driven in large part by coach Matt Diediker, whose standards are such that he classified his team's 24-7 triumph over South St. Paul last Friday as “hollow” given all of the miscues he witnessed.
Tartan (5-0, 3-0) made its state tournament debut in 2018 and went unbeaten in the 2019 regular season, and continues its quest for perfection against 2016, 2017 and 2019 state tournament qualifier Mahtomedi.
Seniors T.J. Fields (407 yards, 4 TDs) and junior Jaylon Washington (373 yards, 2 TDs) are among the top running backs for Tartan, which also gets efficient play from senior quarterback Brandon Lockhart, who has 10 TD throws.
Mahtomedi (4-1, 2-0) edged Buffalo 20-19 on Friday on senior quarterback Johnny DeVore’s 12-yard touchdown pass to junior Jordan Hull and senior Kyle Oswald’s extra-point kick with 3 minutes, 40 seconds remaining in the game.
The No. 9-5A Zephyrs have grown accustomed to wild finishes. Their lone loss came in the form of a 27-21 four-overtime thriller against No. 1-5A St. Thomas Academy on Oct. 23.