Prep report: Rangers headed to Minneapolis after quarterfinal win

Damian Tapio took a direct snap for a 97-yard touchdown run on the first drive of the game.

high school boys playing football
Damian Tapio (21) of Mountain Iron-Buhl runs with the ball against South Ridge on Wednesday, Oct. 19 in Culver.
Clint Austin / Duluth News Tribune
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Mountain Iron-Buhl made its intentions known early in a IX-Man state quarterfinal, as Damian Tapio took a direct snap 97 yards to the house on the first drive of the game as the Rangers claimed a 42-28 win over Kittson County Central at Moorhead.

It wasn't all smooth sailing for MI-B (11-0), as the Bearcats tied it up twice in the first half despite Tapio adding a second touchdown run from 4 yards out. He added a third rushing touchdown, from 25, at the end of the half to give the Rangers a lead going to halftime.

Coming out of the break, the Rangers put the game away. Tapio earned a fourth touchdown run, this time from 56 yards, giving MI-B a 28-14 lead before quarterback Asher Zubich got involved, finding Colton Gallus for a 37-yard touchdown pass, then calling his own number on fourth-and-10 and scoring from 12 yards out for a 42-14 lead.

With the help of two onside kicks, the Bearcats scored two touchdowns in the last six minutes but still had a long way to go when time ran out.

MI-B returns to the state semifinals at U.S. Bank Stadium for the first time since 2019. The Rangers will face Section 4 champ Wheaton Herman Norcross in a semifinal on Thursday morning at 10:30 a.m.



Proctor/Hermantown 6, Roseville/Mahtomedi 0

Jane Eckstrom scored first and last for the Mirage as they opened their season with a shutout victory at St. Luke's Sports and Event Center in Proctor.

Fourteen Proctor/Hermantown skaters had at least one point, while goaltender Suri Langley earned a 21-save shutout.

Breck 3, Moose Lake Area 1

Jorja Jusczak scored in the second period for the Rebels, but that wasn't enough to get past the Mustangs in St. Louis Park, Minnesota in both teams' season openers.

Warroad 8, Duluth Marshall 2

The defending Class A state champions gave up the first goal to Danica Mark of the host Hilltoppers at Mars Lakeview Arena, but the Warriors scored four in response in the first period and several more where that came from for the big win.

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