Mounds View, White Bear Lake rivalry has been one-sided

Not that long ago, the football rivalry between Mounds View and White Bear Lake was pretty intense. For a number of years, the Mustangs fought like crazy but couldn’t get past the Bears.

In the late ’90s and early 2000s, Mounds View was able to get past White Bear Lake and for a stretch the two teams seemed to trade victories. That has changed over the past 10 years or so.

Since 2005, Mounds View has won 12 of the 13 match-ups between the two squads. White Bear Lake’s lone victory in that stretch came in 2013 and two weeks later Mounds View returned the favor in the playoffs.

Another odd aspect of this week’s game against White Bear Lake is the gap between the two teams in terms of overall record. Mounds View’s record is three games better than that of the Bears and that’s the largest gap between them at the time of a head-to-head meeting since 2010. When White Bear and Mounds View met in the first round of the section playoffs that year, Mounds View was 7-1 and the Bears were 3-5, a four-game difference.

Despite the lopsidedness of the win-loss results over the years, it’s still a rivalry game and anything can happen. Last week’s Mounds View victory over Roseville is a perfect example.

Mounds View entered last week’s game having won its last 13 games against the Raiders but needed overtime to wrap up its 14th consecutive win in the series. The Mustangs prevailed 13-7 in a game that had both head coaches shaking their heads in frustration.

Mounds View head coach Jim Galvin started his post-game comments with an apology.

“I’ll start off by apologizing to the fans and everyone here tonight,” Galvin said. “We tried everything we could to lose that football game.”

The offensive excitement that football can generate was definitely lacking. Through 48 minutes, the two teams combined for 14 points and overtime was required to decide a winner. That’s a good thing because if they had just kept playing, who knows how long it would have taken to end the game.

The only scoring in regulation came on a two-yard touchdown run in the first quarter by Mounds View’s Xavier Myles and Roseville’s 15-yard touchdown pass from Luke Bouchart to Levi Brown as time expired in the second quarter.

The second half was filled miscues and missed opportunities for both teams. Roseville fumbled the ball away following a completed pass on its first possession of the second half. 

Mounds View tried to capitalize on the turnover and marched the ball to the Roseville two-yard line. Following two penalties and a sack, the Mustangs tried a 39-yard field goal but the snap was mishandled and they never got off the attempt.

The next 10 possessions ended with seven punts, a fumble, a turnover on downs and the end of the fourth quarter. Not exactly your high-caliber offenses going at it.

“Thank goodness for punting and playing defense,” Galvin said. “We told the guys it’s okay to punt and play defense some nights. You’re not always going to be at your best and when you’re not at your best, you rely on the defense. Maybe next week, the defense won’t be at its best and they’ll rely on the offense.”

Roseville’s final possession of regulation covered 76 yards but since it started on the Raiders’ one-yard line, it wasn’t enough to get any points. Roseville made it down to the Mustangs’ 23-yard line before throwing four straight incompletions.

As that Roseville drive was occurring, Galvin said his team’s offense was planning a strategy for overtime if it got that far.

“We were hoping for overtime when they were driving,” said Galvin. “We said if we get into overtime, we’re going to get into an overset and just run the ball right at them. We weren’t going to dink around with anything else and it worked.”

That plan had to wait for a couple of minutes because Roseville had the first possession in overtime. After a penalty pushed the Raiders back five yards, Bouchart lofted a pass toward the back of the end zone but Mounds View’s Micah Smith made a great play on the ball and came up with the interception.

Mounds View started its try in overtime with a one-yard run from Erik Holloman before Miles went up the middle for eight yards. On third and one, Myles got the ball again and raced around the left end for the winning touchdown.

“It was a great finish,” Galvin said. “That interception in overtime: incredible.”

The victory improved Mounds View’s record to 3-1 overall and left the Mustangs alone in third place at 2-1 in the East Metro Blue District. A win this week guarantees the Mustangs a share of second place because the two teams tied for first, East Ridge and Cretin-Derham Hall, are both 3-0. The loser would join Mounds View at 3-1.

 

Brian Meyers can be reached at bmeyers@lillienews.com or 651-748-7819. Follow him on Twitter @BMeyersNews.

East Metro Blue District standings (through week four)

 

Cretin-Derham Hall 

East Ridge

Mounds View 

Forest Lake 

Roseville

Stillwater 

Woodbury 

White Bear Lake

Dist.

3-0

3-0

2-1

1-2

1-2

1-2

1-2

0-3

Overall

4-0

3-1

3-1

1-3

1-3

2-2

1-3

0-4

Games behind

-

-

1

2

2

2

2

3

 

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