For the first time in five years, the state of Minnesota will have a new 6A football champion.
Totino Grace upended No. 24 Eden Prairie 27-13 on Friday in the quarterfinals, snapping Eden Prairie’s 40-game winning streak. The streak was among the top five active winning streaks in the nation.
Totino Grace scored 21 points in the fourth quarter and all its points in the second half in the victory.
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When the teams met in late August, Eden Prairie used a 24-point second-half surge to pull away for a 38-20 victory. And last November, in the state championship game, top-seeded Eden Prairie held on for a 28-27 win over unseeded Totino Grace, stopping a two-point conversion in the final 90 seconds. In all, Totino Grace had lost its last five meetings with Eden Prairie, including three in the postseason.
Friday night, Eden Prairie scored the lone points of the first half, punching in a TD after recovering a botched punt.
In the second half, though, Eden Prairie was hurt by a pair of interceptions and four personal foul penalties.
In the third quarter, Ivan Burlak scored on a 5-yard run, but the two-point conversion failed to cut the Eden Prairie lead to 7-6.
Eden Prairie answered on the next drive with a 1-yard run by Alec Hetherington and the kick was blocked for a 13-6 lead.
Then it was Totino Grace’s turn on a 13-yard TD pass to Alec Spevacek to tie the game at 13-13.
TG’s defense was able to stop Hetherington two inches short on a fourth-and-1 play and took over at the Eden Prairie 44 with less than 10 minutes remaining.
Two minutes later, Totino Grace had the lead on a 2-yard run by Kez Flomo.
Charlie Walter picked off Eden Prairie and then Burlak scored from 3 yards out with 2:20 left.
Eden Prarie moved the ball down the field — including a dropped pass in the end zone — but an interception in the final minute ended the game and the streak.