Eden Prairie defensive back Michael Tomsche intercepted a pass thrown by St. Michael-Albertville quarterback Kolby Gartner, setting up the Eagles' game-winning touchdown drive in the fourth quarter. Photo: Aaron Lavinsky * firstname.lastname@example.org
Eden Prairie and St. Michael-Albertville, both top-10 teams in Class 6A, limped across the regular-season finish line on Wednesday.
Trailing in the third quarter on the road, fifth-ranked Eden Prairie rallied for consecutive touchdown drives in a 14-7 victory. But each team faces more pressing concerns with the playoffs up next.
Both the Eagles and the ninth-ranked Knights struggled at times with injury and inconsistent offense.
Junior running back Johnny Hartle, who Eden Prairie coach Mike Grant called “our top offensive weapon,” suffered an injury just before halftime and did not return. The Eagles came back with the help of sophomore Javon Palmer-Pruitt, who capped each fourth-quarter scoring drive with short touchdown runs, from 2 yards and 1 yard out.
Eden Prairie defensive back Ben Sather (7) intercepted a pass intended for St. Michael-Albertville wide receiver Brandon Langdok (13) in the second quarter. Photo: Aaron Lavinsky • email@example.com
Consecutive scoring drives in the second half allowed Eden Prairie to escape from St. Michael-Albertville with a 14-7 victory Wednesday.
The Eagles, ranked No. 5 in Class 6A, fell behind 7-0 as the Knights’ Kolby Gartner hit Brandon Langdok with a 34-yard touchdown pass. Eden Prairie answered on its next drive with the first of two Javon Palmer-Pruitt touchdown runs.
A Michael Tomsche interception at the Knights’ 27-yard line stopped whatever chance No. 9 St. Michael-Albertville (5-3) had to answer. And then Eden Prairie (6-2) played keep away, running eight times and converting on fourth down for the go-ahead touchdown.
The teams were tied 0-0 at halftime. Eden Prairie missed a field goal, and had another field goal and a punt blocked.
St. Michael-Albertville dominated on special teams but struggled on offense, throwing an interception, losing a fumble and turning the ball over on downs.
Check back later for more on the game.