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Two North Shore Football Teams Charge Into Playoffs

On Tuesday, October 24th, I told a friend that I was headed to a football game after work and she said, “Seems like a good night for football.” For our North Shore High School Football teams, their coaches, families, and fans, she couldn’t have been more right. It was a good night for foot-ball and a great night for the Section 7AAA Quarterfinals for both Two Harbors and Cook County.

Two Harbors Crushes Hibbing 51-0 in Dominant Playoff Opener

Fans showed up in droves to Two Harbor’s Stadium Field, though some were hard to see. The theme of the night was camouflage and there were many who took part. Others wore blaze orange, and they were hard to miss.

Also hard to miss was the pep band. I always like it when the pep bands are able to attend the games. Especially good ones. As a former pep band member, I must say, you all were on point!

Speaking of points, Two Harbors began to rack them up in no time. With less than two minutes off the clock, #18 Zack Libal, a junior, scored a touchdown for a 2-yard gain. Sophomore #15 Zach Johnson kicked the extra point. Just over a minute later, #10 Tate Nelson scored. The junior ran a 45-yard touchdown, and #15 Zach Johnson again scored the extra point. At the 6:10 mark, quarterback #11 Jacob Carpenter, a junior, passed the ball to #25, senior Isaiah Hietala, who scored. Isaiah would score again before the end of the quarter with a punt return for a 79-yard gain. It was already 27-0 going into the second quarter but, less than 30 seconds in, #10 Tate Nelson ran a touchdown for a 61-yard gain. #15 Zach Johnson got the extra point. He would do so again after both of #11 Jacob Carpenter’s consecutive touchdowns. The 2nd quarter ended in a 48-0 score. #15 Zach Johnson wasn’t done for the night. With two minutes left in the game, he kicked a field goal and it was good.

With a final score of 51-0, the Agates secured the next game against Pequot Lakes High School in the 7AAA semi-final. Pequot Lakes had a 7-1 record going into playoffs. When matched up in September, the Two Harbors Agates lost in a close game of 20-13.

Despite Two Harbors’ best efforts, the Saturday, October 28th game would end in a similar score, 21-15, with Pequot Lakes knocking Two Harbors out of the playoffs. The Agates did not go down without a fight, forcing the Eagles to play overtime before their season ended.

As much as I whined about the weather, I had a really fun time watching the team this year. A few times, I sat with the away team fans and it was interesting to hear how impressed they were with the Agate team. Maybe not in those exact words. I look forward to watching games next year. Congratulations to Two Harbors, their coaches, family, and fans for a great season!

Cook County Vikings Blitz Their Way to Playoff Glory with a Fierce 58-14 Victory

The Cook County Vikings kicked off their postseason series against the Kelliher/Northome Mustangs. The stage was set when the Vikings won the toss and opted to receive. Only 22 seconds after the opening play the Vikings’ quarter-back, sophomore #80 Nicholas Spry, executed a 57-yard pass to #7 Macoy Fairbanks, a freshman, resulting in an early 6-0 lead for Cook County.

With just under 2 minutes left in the first quar-ter, #16 Ray Dressely scored a touchdown and, with a successful 2-point conversion attempt, the first ended 14-0.

The Vikings continued to build their lead in the second quarter. #12 Rayce Gibson, a junior, sprinted 12-yards for another touchdown, while senior #43 Calvin Battees successfully added 2-points to the board, extending the lead to 22-0. Shortly after, #16 Ray Dressely struck again, this time with a 20-yard touchdown run. #42 Calvin Battees once more secured the 2-point conversion. #16 Ray Dressely was injured after this touchdown and the senior didn’t return to the game.

With 2 seconds remaining in the first half, #9 Jordan Backstrom, a junior, seized a pass and dashed 40-yards into the end-zone. Quarterback #11 Hunter Rex, also a junior, added 2 points with a successful conversion. The scoreboard mirrored the final score from the teams’ previ-ous encounter a few weeks ago in the regular season, which had ended 38-0

The action continued in the third quarter with #7 Macoy Fairbanks extending the Vikings’ lead with a 20-yard touchdown catch from #11 Hunter Rex. The score stood at 44-0.

In the fourth quarter, the Vikings displayed their unwavering dominance as #55 Hunter Childs, a senior, found the end-zone just seconds in, bringing the score to 50-0. After the Mustangs were able to get on the board, #10 Amos Falter, also a senior, continued to impress by running 33-yards for a touchdown. #80 Nicholas Spry contributed two more points, extending the lead to 58-8.

The Mustangs scored once more, with only 27 seconds remaining in the game. The final score was an impressive 58-14.

The Vikings went on to play the #1 seed and reigning champs Mountain Iron-Buhl Rangers on Saturday, October 28th. Unfortunately, it was the end of a great season for Cook County when Mountain Iron-Buhl won 40-0.

Congratulations to the Vikings, their coaching staff, family, and fans for a great year of foot-ball. We’ll look forward to seeing the team’s accomplishments next year!

[I want to thank the WTIP radio station and their announcers for making this game accessible. I had a great time listening to the talented announcers who kept me updated play-by-play as I attended the Two Harbors game. It was nice to be able to tune in and be a part of both games. Thank you, crew!]

Feel free to contact me at sarahwritesnsj@yahoo.com  with any news we should news about!

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