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Prep football season limps to finish as COVID-19 knocks teams out early

A disappointing end to what was an abbreviated season because of COVID-19.

Section football tournaments are being played this week throughout Minnesota but the state's largest field of Class 6A teams is already down multiple competitors due to COVID-19. 

The latest is Hopkins High School, which was forced to drop out of the tournament two days before they were scheduled to face Totino-Grace in the opening round Tuesday night. 

"I am sorry to report that the Hopkins football season has come to an end at the hands of the COVID pandemic," Hopkins Athletic Director Dan Johnson tweeted Sunday. "The Royals will finish the year at 3-3 and we salute an outstanding group of senior leaders. Go Royals!"

Mounds View announced that COVID-19 ended its season prematurely late last week. They were scheduled to face Blaine on Tuesday night. 

The same thing has happened to Burnsville, which was scheduled to play Wayzata Tuesday night. 

Overall, there are now six teams that have a first-round bye due to COVID-19: East Ridge, Eden Prairie, Totino-Grace, Farmington, Wayzata and Blaine. 

The games that are still scheduled to happen Tuesday include: 

  • St. Michael-Albertville vs. Eastview
  • Woodbury vs. Minnetonka
  • Rosemount vs. Anoka
  • Lakeville South vs. Cretin-Derham Hall
  • Edina vs. Osseo
  • Champlin Park vs. White Bear Lake
  • Shakopee vs. Eagan
  • Prior Lake vs. Roseville
  • Centennial vs. Lakeville North

You can see the full Class 6A bracket here

The biggest class isn't the only one facing difficulties fielding a full tournament. The same has happened in classes all over the state, including in Class 5A where Andover has advanced to the section title game because only two other teams are still playing, and only four teams haven't had COVID-19 cancel the season in Section 1, Class 4A. 

There is no state tournament this year and all games will be wrapped up by Nov. 28. 

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