On a cold and wet Friday night at St. Louis Park High School, two Section 5A soccer titles took place with the Benilde-St. Margaret’s girls and the Breck boys clinching state tournament berths.
Leading off the day’s festivities was the girls final as Alexa Tataryn scored a goal and assisted on another to lead the Benilde-St. Margaret’s Red Knights to a 3-0 win over the Blake Bears.
It was a rematch of a regular season game from September 1 when the Red Knights shut out the Bears 2-0. BSM recorded their seventh consecutive shutout and outscored their opponents 30-0 in that stretch.
Now to the game where the Red Knights quickly tallied :55 into the game on a right side goal from Sophie Roux. They would go up by two as Tataryn made a centering pass Madison Stoks and she sent the ball into the net to give BSM a 2-0 halftime lead.
Tataryn would also find the net, scoring from the right side with 23:20 remaining in the game. Strong defense and outstanding goaltending from sophomore Claire Grazzini contributed to the Red Knights return to the state tournament.
BSM Improved their record to 17-1-1 and Blake concluded their season 13-5-2.
On the boys side, the third seeded Breck Mustangs, coming off their win over the second seeded Benilde-St. Margaret’s Red Knights in the semifinals played giant killer again as they defeated the top seeded Totino-Grace Eagles 2-0.
Neither team would score in the first half. The Mustangs had a chance to get the early lead but Garrett Opperman’s free kick was saved by Eagle goalkeeper Matt O’Dea, Breck would eventually take the lead on an odd goal :55 into the second half. Avi Eller, the son of former Minnesota Viking Carl Eller took a shot that bounced off the goal post and entered the net. They would clinch their sixth trip to state on Opperman’s goal with 9:13 remaining in regulation time.
Breck improved their record to 12-4-5 and Totino-Grace ended their season with a 13-4-2 record.