A knee injury six weeks into the season sidelined Holy Angels standout running back/linebacker Jack Anderson. Teammates rallied to ensure losing Anderson didn’t mean losing the season.
Thomas Shelstad led the effort. He had rushed for 146 yards and two scores through the Benilde-St. Margaret’s game when Anderson went down. In the games that followed, Shelstad’s production jumped to 562 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Anderson got teammates fired up before the Class 4A title game Friday, which the Stars won 14-0 over Cloquet. Shelstad led his team with 91 rushing yards and a touchdown.
“We just tried to go hard and do it for Wacko,” Shelstad said. “That’s pretty much been our motto all year.”
DAVID LA VAQUE
While Caledonia’s Owen King soaked up much of the attention after the Warriors’ 57-6 rout of Pipestone in the Class 2A championship game, the Warriors defense made a resounding statement as well.
Caledonia held Pipestone to minus-11 yards of total offense. The Arrows, who played without starting quarterback Cody Thompson (mononucleosis), did not get a first down in the entire game and punted nine times.
“They beat us up front,” Pipestone coach Clay Anderson said. “And when you get beat up front, it doesn’t matter what you do. Nothing works very well.”
In its six seasons since losing to Wheaton/Herman-Norcross in the state quarterfinals in 2011, Spring Grove has been defeated by only one team.
Starting with a victory in the Section 1 final in 2012, Grand Meadow defeated Spring Grove nine consecutive times, including four consecutive victories in the section championship game. The Superlarks won the Prep Bowl from 2013 through 2016.
Spring Grove defeated Grand Meadow twice this season — 33-20 in the regular season and 40-17 in the section semifinals.
• It’s no surprise that Spring Grove junior Alex Folz is the leading passer and rusher on the Lions and their kicker and punter.
In 2013, Folz was the national champion in the 13-year-old age group in the Punt, Pass and Kick competition at Denver’s Mile High Stadium. He finished as the runner-up in 2014.
• Nevis, in the state playoffs for the first time since 2012, had lost in the section final three consecutive years before defeating Norman County East/Ulen-Hitterdal 20-18 in the Section 6 championship game this year. That victory avenged the Tigers’ only regular-season loss. Norman County East/Ulen-Hitterdal defeated Nevis 20-14 in week six.