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Fridley storms back to defeat St. Anthony 28-27 to reach 4A state tournament

By MATTHEW DAVIS, Special to the Star Tribune, 11/01/19, 8:15PM CDT


Senior quarterback Kaleb Blaha ran for three touchdowns and threw for another score to lead the Tigers, who trailed by 20 points in the second quarter.

Fridley quarterback Kaleb Blaha scored the first of his four touchdowns in the Class 4A, Section 4 championship Friday night. Fridley won 28-27 over St. Anthony. Photo by Earl J. Ebensteiner, SportsEngine

Senior quarterback Kaleb Blaha led host Fridley back from a 20-point deficit to defeat St. Anthony Village 28-27 for the Class 4A, Section 4 title Friday and a fourth state appearance in five years.

Fridley trailed 27-7 in the second quarter.

“No one blamed anyone,” Blaha said. “We all did our job and came back.”

Blaha accounted for four touchdowns — three rushing and one passing. He threw for 115 yards and rushed for 165.

Fridley (10-0) allowed six touchdowns all season, but St. Anthony was able to move the ball. Huskies senior quarterback Troy Ellison threw two touchdown passes in the first quarter. Senior running back Jonathan Kieren added two rushing touchdowns in the second quarter and rushed for 120 yards for the game.


“We knew we could just crank out 5, 10 yards each play, so that’s what we came out here and did,” Kieren said.

The Huskies (8-2) had a final chance after a Blaha fumble late in the game, but Tigers junior defensive back Micah Niewald sealed the game with an interception with 1:15 left. The victory avenged a section final loss to the Huskies last year.

“It’s just excitement. You get to see everyone jumping up and down,” said Niewald, who also caught a touchdown pass. 

St. Anthony’s Troy Ellison looks for an opening in the Huskies final drive of the Class 4A, Section 4 championship, which they lost 28-27 to Fridley. Photo by Earl J. Ebensteiner, SportsEngine

First report

Kaleb Blaha accounted for all of Fridley’s touchdowns Friday in securing a return to the Class 4A state tournament.

The Tigers senior quarterback ran for three touchdowns and threw for one in a 28-27 victory over St. Anthony Village in the Section 4 championship game. The win avenged a section final loss to the Huskies (8-2) last year.

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