In a post-game talk to his team after Friday’s 18-17 overtime loss to Rosemount, Eden Prairie coach Mike Grant said, “You have to tip your hat to them. They’re a good team and they made plays.”
He could have been more specific.
While both teams made plays, Rosemount made the last plays: the last play of regulation time and the last play of overtime.
With the game tied at 10-10, Eden Prairie attempted a 25-yard field goal as regulation time expired. After back-to-back-to-back Rosemount timeouts, Irish receiver Sean Appold came around the left edge and blocked the kick.
“The three other kicks we made during the game were all slower,” said Grant. “The first three averaged 1.36 seconds. The one they blocked, we got off in 1.26 seconds.”
The missed opportunity sent the game into overtime.
On Eden Prairie’s first play in overtime – the ball was placed at the 10-yard line – Sam Thomas scored on a 10-yard run. Connor Reynolds kicked the extra point and Eden Prairie led 17-10.
Two plays later, Rosemount quarterback Trevor Armborst threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Jake Ratzlaff.
“They want to end it,” shouted someone from the Eden Prairie sideline.
Instead of kicking the extra point and knotting the game at 17-17, Rosemount went for two.
An Eden Prairie stop would mean an Eden Prairie win. A successful two-point play would make Rosemount the winner. Either way, the game would end.
Armborst scrambled to his right and lofted a pass toward Cadin Rudoll.
Rudoll caught the ball in a crowd of black jerseys.
“They scored on a Hail Mary,” said Grant. “Justice (Justice Sullivan) was in the quarterback’s face and he just threw it up there. We had it defended perfectly. We had four guys there, but couldn’t knock it down.
“The ball kind of fell into their guy’s hands,” added Grant. “We had a hand on it as he fell but he rolled over and came up with it. It’s one of those things. If you watch enough football, you’re going to see a play like that.”
After forcing an Eden Prairie punt on the game’s first possession, Rosemount capped its first drive with a 42-yard field goal.
Eden Prairie answered with some trickery. David Warren-Mitchell threw in the flat to Cade Kramer, who then completed a 33-yard touchdown pass to a wide open Mark Masters.
Reynolds kicked the extra point and Eden Prairie led 7-3.
In the second quarter, Armborst lifted the Irish to a 10-7 lead, scoring on a 6-yard keeper.
Right before halftime, Reynolds tied the game at 10-10 with a 25-yard field goal.
With the game tied at 10-10 late in the fourth quarter, Warren-Mitchell converted on third-and-11 with a 29-yard run.
A couple plays later, Eden Prairie would attempt a game-winning kick.
And Rosemont made the last play of regulation time. Five plays later, they’d make the last play in overtime.
“It was a great game,” said Grant, “if you didn’t care who won. Both teams made plays and both teams executed.
“It had to be fun to watch,” he added.
The loss not only ended Eden Prairie’s season, but kept the Eagles out of the quarterfinal round of the state tournament’s largest class for the first time since 2004.
Between 2005 and 2019, Eden Prairie won seven big-school state championships.
“We’ve broken a lot of hearts and made plays for a lot of years,” said Grant, “but you just can’t do it every time.”
During the regular season, Eden Prairie made one more play to beat Shakopee and then one more play to beat Saint Michael-Albertville.
On Friday, Rosemount made one more play to beat Eden Prairie.
The victory sends Rosemount into the Class 6A quarterfinals, where they’ll meet No. 1-seeded Champlin Park, 16-7 winners over Prior Lake.
Champlin Park vs. Rosemount is set for Thursday (today).