HILLS, Minn. (KELO) — Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has implemented new COVID-19 restrictions, including a four-week pause on high school sports. In Hills, Minnesota, the Patriots are preparing for one last football game prior to the pause.
Hills-Beaver Creek closed the regular season a perfect 6-0.
“We knew the kind of team we have, and we have a great group of seniors, a great group of juniors, just a team that has the potential to make a run deep in the playoffs,” Hills-Beaver Creek football coach Rex Metzger said.
That opportunity was derailed by Minnesota’s new COVID-19 restrictions, adding another twist to an already chaotic post-season.
“There was a team that did drop out, so we had a bye on Tuesday. We were supposed to play Saturday, and then the section championship on the following Friday,” Metzger said.
The abbreviated post-season was cut even shorter with Wednesday’s announcement. But, the four-week pause doesn’t go into effect until 11:59 Friday night.
“Last night when we got the news that we can still play one more game, I know there’s some definite excitement with our kids,” Metzger said.
It’s a rematch of last week’s game against Mt. Lake Area. It’s also a chance at closure.
“We get a chance to play and we’re going to make the most of this opportunity. This is potentially our last game of the season, and we’re going to play it like it’s the state championship,” Metzger said.
However the pause plays out, Metzger says the players have handled the pandemic like champions.
“They’ve been positive, they’ve stayed positive through all this, but at the end of the day they’re still wondering what’s going to happen, are we going to get a chance to play a state championship, but right now we’re just going to focus in on this game Friday,” Metzger said.
Hills-Beaver Creek will host Mt. Lake Area Friday night at 6:00. The Patriots’ volleyball team moved Monday’s match at Fulda to tonight, in advance of the state’s four-week pause.