November 23, 2018 10:44 PM
(ABC 6 News) - For the 2nd year in a row, the Spring Grove Lions can call themselves state champions.
After a close first half at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, the Lions' offense proved to be too much for Mountain Lake Area High School, beating them with a final score of 40-18.
"These guys deserve it," Lions head coach Zach Hauser said. "They busted their butts all year long."
The Lions carried a 14-6 lead into halftime before outscoring the Wolverines in the final two quarters, 22-12.
Alex Folz had a huge day for Spring Grove with 257 rushing yards, 4 rushing touchdowns, and 90 yards through the air.
Folz, a finalist for Minnesota's Mr. Football Award, threw three interceptions in the first half. Despite the early struggles, the Lions showed their grit by pulling out another state title win.
“Alex, he’s one of the toughest, hard-headed guys I know,” Lions wide receiver and linebacker Noah Elton said. “Being able to come back from that can be hard for some players, it gets in their heads, but we’re always taught to get back to the next play and all that stuff, and Alex can do that really well, so I think that shows his mental ability to stay in the game.”
“It was all my teammates,” Folz added. “They picked me up, they picked it up on defense. When you have a team that can pick you up and stop them, you just wipe it away and nothing happens, and you just keep playing, it happens.”
Offensively, one of those players who picked up Folz was junior running back Tyler Kersten, who had touchdown runs of 58 and two yards, while rushing for 108 yards.
"Tyler is fast. We know if we can get him the ball, he's going to make a big play," Hauser said. "When the defense pays so much attention to Folz, Tyler gets room and he's capable of taking it to the house."
"There was a lot of open room to run with," Kersten added. "The defense focused on Alex a lot, so that gave me an opportunity."
Highlights of this game and Caledonia vs. Barnesville tonight on ABC 6 News at 10.
Updated: November 23, 2018 10:44 PM
Created: November 23, 2018 02:04 PM
Copyright 2018 - KAAL-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company