The Farmington Tiger football team fell in its regular season finale Wednesday, Oct. 18, on the road at Lakeville South 17-14. All the scoring for both teams took place in the first half and at one point the Tigers had a 14-7 lead. With the loss, Farmington finishes the regular season 2-6 overall and 1-6 in the Metro South sub-district. They travel to Roseville on Friday, Oct. 27, as the seventh seed in Section 3-6A. Roseville is the no. 2 seed in Section 4-6A.
Lakeville South started the scoring as they broke an 80-yard touchdown run and took a 7-0 lead with seven minutes and 25 seconds left in the first quarter. Farmington responded with a scoring drive capped by a 1-yard touchdown run by senior Avery Filapek and tied the game at 7-7 with 5:31 left in the first.
The Tigers took a 14-7 lead with 7:20 left in the second quarter after junior quarterback Alijah Moe completed a 46-yard touchdown pass to junior wide receiver Adam Weed. However, Lakeville South was able to tie the game with 3:11 left in the first half on a 33-yard touchdown run. The Cougars were then able to add three more points on a 32-yard field goal with under a minute left in the half. They led 17-14 at halftime and that would remain the final.
"It was a good battle, I was really proud of our kids," head coach Adam Fischer said. "They competed really hard, which was the challenge that I laid out for them and they responded. It was back-and-forth in the first half, but we just couldn't quite flip the field in the second half. Our last drive of the game we had it across the 50-yard line, a fourth-and-5 and we had things kind of rolling, but credit them they (Lakeville South) came up with a big stop when it mattered most."
Moe was productive in the passing game, throwing for 197 yards and a touchdown, but completed just 11-of-25 passes and also three interceptions.
"Alijah Moe stepped up at quarterback and we were able to throw the ball a little bit," Fischer said. "Caden Freetly had a big night so we were able to get him going, and that opened some stuff up for Adam Weed to make some catches."
Freetly had a breakout game with five receptions for 109 yards. Weed had his touchdown reception and totaled four catches for 69 yards.
Farmington's run game was never really able to get going. They ran for just 69 yards on 31 carries, including Filapek's touchdown. Filapek led all rushers with 15 carries for 42 yards and the touchdown, and Fischer said he was used primarily as a "Wildcat" runner (when in lieu of a traditional quarterback a running back is used and takes the ball from center to allow for an extra blocker). Senior Maurice Houston added nine carries for 27 yards.
Fischer also praised his defense, which has been a mainstay for the Tigers.
"Our defense, as usual, they were locked in and played really solid," he said. "We still turn it over way too much, but our defense has been the real deal all year. We couldn't quite score enough points to reward them with the victory, but I'm still really proud of our kids."
A key part of that defense is senior linebacker Brock Mogensen, who earned the StarTribune's Football Hub Defensive Player of the Week award after his performance against Eastview (17 tackles, a sack and forced fumble). Mogensen had eight tackles and half a sack against Lakeville South.
"He's a tremendous leader and basically runs our defense," Fischer explained. "He's unbelievable, he's probably one of the best linebackers I've ever been around. On top of his skillset and athletic ability, he's extremely intelligent, a real student of the game and studies a ton of film. That just takes his abilities to an even higher level because of what he brings mentally. He's super physical, he finishes and is our tone setter, gets guys going. He means the world to our football team and I think he's one of the best linebackers in the area."
Fischer said that Roseville, Farmington's section opponent, will present a challenge for the Tigers.
"They're a really well coached squad and very athletic," he said. "They have a really good running back, if he can get in space he's pretty tough. Defensively, they use a lot of their athletes to play on defense as well. We've seen good competition all year, I don't think we're going to be overwhelmed by it, but for us, we need to limit big plays and protect the football. We feel like if we can do those things, we have a chance against them and that's all you can ask for."
Should the Tigers win their first section game Friday, they would then play the winner of sixth-seeded Wayzata and no. 3 Maple Grove on Friday, Nov. 3, at the highest seed.