This season we’ll have a weekly segment called “The Big One” where we feature a game with post-game articles and/or analysis including video from our friends at Coon Rapids Sports on YouTube.  Our next “Big One” of the 2010 season will be Coon Rapids @ Andover on Saturday, October 30th (1:00pm).

These two teams met just a few weeks ago in a game that was tied 7-7 in the 4th quarter before Coon Rapids scored two touchdowns to win it 21-7.  Andover (7-2) was a different team back then.  They were unbeaten at 5-0 but had just lost their starting running back the week before and really seemed to struggle finding an identity offensively that entire game.  Those struggles continued the following week at Blaine and they got whipped.  In their final regular season game of the season, against conference unbeaten Osseo, they appeared to find that identity.  Quarterback Tyler Finnes (Sr) would now shoulder the load of the running game in addition to the passing game.  Finnes rushed for 246 yards in a close 29-26 victory and added another 155 yards last week in a come from behind first round of the playoff victory last week against Anoka.

Coon Rapids (6-3) has been solid all season.  They don’t have the firepower to compete in high scoring contests but they’ve shown that they can win the ugly close ones.  Thanks to a much improved defense that is surrendering around 17 points a game and a heavy rushing attack, led by Antonio Ford (Jr), they have found themselves in every game with a chance to win in the 4th quarter – with the exception of the Blaine game.  That was the case back in week 6 of the regular season when unbeaten Andover visited Cardinals Stadium.  They kept the game close and found a way to win it in the 4th quarter.

Highlight videos of  the regular season Andover vs Coon Rapids game courtesy of Coon Rapids Sports on YouTube

It’s difficult to beat a team twice in one season and with home field advantage in this game Andover might be considered the favorite.  But Coon Rapids is playing with confidence.  A strong defense will do that for you and I suspect this game will be very similar to their previous meeting.  Has Andover found an offensive identity good enough to carry them to the Section 7AAAAA championship game?  Can Coon Rapids control the tempo of this game and pull off another late victory bringing them one win away from a trip to the State Tournament?  We’ll find out tomorrow.

Other A-B-C Playoff games this week:

* Forest Lake @ (2) Blaine

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