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Lakeville South tops Star Tribune Class 6A preseason metro top 10

By JIM PAULSEN, Star Tribune, 10/08/20, 12:45PM CDT


Check out Jim Paulsen's list as well as top teams to watch in other classes.

The interim tag is off Lakeville South head coach Ben Burk this year after taking over the team in midseason last year and leading it to the state tournament. Photo: Matt Blewett, special to the Star Tribune

Class 6A
1. Lakeville South (10-2 in 2019): The Cougars bonded after losing their head coach midseason in 2019. Expect that momentum to carry over this year under no-longer-interim coach Ben Burk.
2. Eden Prairie (7-3): Do not expect the veteran Eagles to lose three games again this year. They may not lose any.
3. Wayzata (13-0): The defending Class 6A champs graduated big chunks of the 2019 team but have talent, much of it untested.
4. Rosemount (7-4): The stout Irish defense will keep them in games and perhaps even win a few. How quickly will QB Jordan Modrynski get comfortable as a starter? (Note: The team’s game Friday at Lakeville North was canceled Thursday afternoon because Irish players are in quarantine.)
5. Lakeville North (10-2): Anchored by a strong offensive line, the Panthers also have plenty of candidates to run behind it. The defense is a bit green and needs seasoning.
6. St. Michael-Albertville (5-4): As has become typical of coach Jared Essler’s teams, the Knights have enviable balance with depth and athleticism to spare.
7. Cretin-Derham Hall (4-5): The key to the Raiders success: Get the ball to Tre Holloman as much as possible. He will even see time at QB.
8. Prior Lake (5-5): The rough-and-ready Lakers have been tough-luck kids. Is this the season for signature victories that have escaped them?
9. Totino-Grace (7-3): Stalwarts including OT Joe Alt, QB Kristoff Kowalkowski and DB/WR Nick Hand should make head coach Jay Anderson’s first season a fun one.
10. Shakopee (5-6): Is there a better program-builder than coach Ray Betton? Two years after a two-victory season, the Sabers might have a Top 10 team.
Others: Woodbury, Edina, Champlin Park, Farmington, Mounds View, East Ridge.

Class 5A and others to watch
1. Chaska (5A, 12-1)
2. St. Thomas Academy (5A, 11-2)
3. Elk River (5A, 11-2)
4. Cooper (5A, 7-3)
5. Minneapolis North (2A, 12-1)
6. Hutchinson (4A, 11-1)
7. SMB (4A, 12-1)
8. Becker (4A, 8-2)
9. Benilde-St. Margaret’s (4A, 9-1)
10. Annandale (3A, 11-2)

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