Football: Tuesday's game is against Eagan at St. Thomas Academy's fieldThe Hastings boys football team plays against Eagan in the first round of the section tournament Tuesday, Oct. 27. The game will be held at St. Thomas Academy, because of poor field conditions in Eagan.
By: Chad Richardson, The Hastings Star-Gazette
The Hastings boys football team plays against Eagan in the first round of the section tournament Tuesday, Oct. 27. The game will be held at St. Thomas Academy, because of poor field conditions in Eagan.
The Wildcats have the No. 4 seed in the section. Hastings has the No. 5 seed.
The Wildcats had a 3-4 record entering their game Wednesday night.
Hastings has a 3-5 record.
The section’s No. 1 seed is Cretin. If the Raiders win, they will play at Cretin Saturday, Oct. 31.
As for the Wildcats, they should be celebrating the return of their heralded quarterback, junior Jameson Parsons. He broke his collarbone early this season and was set to see some action in Wednesday’s game. It sounds like his first full game back would be Tuesday’s matchup against Hastings.
Eagan plays in the Lake Conference, considered one of the state’s best.
“We know they’re going to be very well prepared, and that they’re going to be a tough football team,” Strain said.
“We have seen them on tape a little bit. They are a physical team, and they have some pretty good size and some speed.”
The Hastings boys football team concluded its regular season Tuesday night in Stillwater with a 28-0 loss to the No. 3-ranked team in Class 5A, 28-0.
Stillwater scored in each of the first two quarters to take a 14-0 lead into halftime.
Hastings, meanwhile, had its opportunities to score but turned the ball over on downs twice inside the Stillwater 20-yard-line.
In the first instance, the Raiders got all the way down to the Stillwater 5-yard line before their drive stalled. Hastings went for it on fourth down but couldn’t convert.
Later in the first half, Hastings got to the 18-yard line before turning it over on downs.
“We moved the football,” Hastings coach Dana Strain said. “I wouldn’t say we were going up and down the field on them, but we did move the ball. The difference was, in the first half, they got into our red zone twice and scored twice. We got into their red zone twice, and didn’t score either time. That was the difference in the game.”
When confronted with the decision on whether or not to go for it on fourth down, Strain didn’t hesitate. He knows the Ponies have a very strong offense and knew field goals wouldn’t cut it.
“We knew we’d have to take advantage of the opportunities when we had them,” Strain said. “That’s why we went for it.”
In the second half, the Ponies added two fourth-quarter scores.
“Going into halftime, we certainly weren’t depressed,” Strain said. “We felt comfortable we could come out and get some things done. We just didn’t do that. We had a more difficult time moving the ball in the second half.”
Hastings lost to Woodbury Wednesday night, 42-28.
It looked like the Royals were going to run away with the game after taking a 14-0 lead in the first quarter. Hastings, though, battled back and trailed 21-14 at the half.
In the third quarter, Woodbury again got out of the gate strong, scoring 14 unanswered points to take a 35-14 lead, which proved insurmountable.
“We had opportunities where we’d get them in third downs, or fourth downs, and we could never get a stop defensively,” Strain said. “That was the story of our night. We just never made stops when we had to.”
Hastings touchdowns were scored by Mike Hill and Nick Gmiterko (two), on receptions from Hill and Tom Sieh.
Hill completed 12 of 23 attempts for 179 yards.
Sieh rushed for 114 yards on 18 carries to lead the Raiders on the ground.
Gmiterko had six catches for 89 yards. Dan Guelle had three catches for 48 yards, Tony Hammes had two catches for 37 yards, and Peter Schultz had one catch for five yards.
Woodbury rushed for a total of 370 yards against the Raiders.