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Prep football: MLA to play for state 9-Man championship

MINNEAPOLIS -- Led by the passing and running of junior quarterback Abraham Stoesz, the Mountain Lake Area high school football team defeated Mountain Iron-Buhl 42-8 Friday morning in the semifinals of the Minnesota state 9-Man tournament.

MINNEAPOLIS -- Led by the passing and running of junior quarterback Abraham Stoesz, the Mountain Lake Area high school football team defeated Mountain Iron-Buhl 42-8 Friday morning in the semifinals of the Minnesota state 9-Man tournament.

The Wolverines will take a 12-0 record with them to the championship next Friday against defending champion Spring Grove. The showdown will begin at 10 a.m. at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Spring Grove beat Cromwell-Wright 48-12 in its semifinal contest on Thursday.

Stoesz carried 15 times for 102 yards and one touchdown against Mountain Iron-Buhl and completed 10 of 16 passes for 134 yards for another TD.

The Wolverines dominated the Rangers throughout, leading 29-0 at halftime and 42-0 before MIB put its only points on the board. Stoesz scored the game’s first touchdown on a 1-yard run, concluding an 11-play, 75-yard drive. Drake Harder scored twice on carries of 5 and 4 yards. Mace Herrig scored on a 2-yard run and Brett Willaby scored on a 2-yard run. Zachary Spinks caught an 18-yard TD pass.

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As a team, Mountain Lake Area accumulated 22 first downs to MIB’s 10 and 238 yards rushing to their rivals’ 122. The Wolverines’ 134 passing yards compared to just 26 for the Rangers, who completed five of 13 aerials and had one pass intercepted.

Harder gained 55 yards rushing for the winners, on 11 tries, and Herrig gained 55 on nine attempts.

Two more state semifinal games involving area teams occur today (Saturday, Nov. 17) at U.S. Bank. At 11:30 a.m. in Class A, Springfield plays Mahnomen/Waubun. And at 4:30 in Class AAA, Fairmont takes on Perham.

Mountain Iron-Buhl 0 0 0 8 -- 8Mountain Lake Area 14 15 7 6 -- 42  

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