Matt Steichen has been the sports editor at the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. He has previously been a sports writer at the Sioux City Journal and Le Mars Daily Sentinel and the sports editor at the Austin Daily Herald.
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Despite Wednesday's 28-7 home loss to Eagan, Rosemount earned the No. 1 seed and a bye in the Section 3AAAAA playoffs. The Irish (5-3) will face the winner of Tuesday's game between No. 4 Eastview and No. 5 Burnsville Saturday at Irish Stadium.
When Rosemount faced South Suburban Conference champion Prior Lake during the regular season, the Lakers used a straight-set sweep of three doubles matches to claim a 4-3 victory. Avoiding that sweep made the difference for the third-seeded Irish in Thursday's rematch in the Section 3AA finals. The duo of sisters Megan and Emily Harrington rallied for a 2-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-1 win at No.
The Rosemount volleyball team strung three straight victories together for the first time since the first three matches of the season and came away with a second-place finish at the Benilde-St. Margaret's Tournament Saturday. The Irish opened the tournament by rolling past the host school, 25-8 and 25-9. They started slowly in their second round game against Holy Angels, but recovered for a 24-26, 25-10, 15-11 win.
Rosemount brought in five runners ahead of runner-up Eastview's No. 3 runner as it defended its South Suburban Conference title last Friday at Eagan High School. The Irish, ranked second behind Stillwater in Class 2A, scored 49 points to beat the ninth-ranked Lightning by 23.
The True Team format is designed to reward the teams with the most depth. That team was Rosemount at Saturday's Section 3AA True Team meet at Rosemount Middle School. The sixth-ranked (Class 2A) Irish won three of the meet's 12 events, but had 32 other top-10 finishes as they racked up 1,034 points and claimed their first True Team championship. Woodbury placed second with 985 ½ points, followed by East Ridge (859), Cretin-Derham Hall (685 ½), Henry Sibley (493 ½) and Park (321 ½). The Irish started the meet in fine fashion, winning each of the first two events.
Rosemount had its chances against third-ranked Eagan last Thursday in the Section 3AA tournament. The Irish had a 13-7 advantage in shots on goal, and controlled the ball for much of the game, but couldn't find the back of the net as their season ended with a 2-0 loss in the tournament's second round. "Our girls played extremely well and had plenty of opportunities to win our semi-final match against Eagan," said Rosemount coach Kevin Adams, whose team lost to Eagan 4-1 in their regular season finale two weeks ago.
Last Thursday, Virginia Norder qualified for the Class 2A State team tournament when Rosemount defeated top-seeded Prior Lake. The Section 3AA individual tournament began Friday and Norder continued her winning ways, taking four straight matches to qualify for Class 2A State as an individual for the third straight year. Norder earned first-round bye as the top seed, then defeated Malini Wijesinghe of Apple Valley (6-1, 6-0), Dani Keller of Prior Lake (6-0, 6-1) and Lily Foley of Visitation (6-3, 6-2) to advance to Tuesday's section championship at LifeTime Fitness in Lakeville.
The final two games of the regular season played out in similar fashion for the Rosemount boys soccer team. The Irish managed to hang within a goal against a ranked opponent before a couple of late scores resulted in a pair of 3-0 losses. The first setback was against top-ranked (Class 2A) Eastview last Tuesday at Irish Stadium and the second against No. 8 Eagan on the road last Thursday. It was the ninth time the team has been shut out in 15 games this season. The homecoming game against No.
Rosemount coach Kevin Adams was pleased with the way his team responded after falling behind 4-0 early in the second half of last Thursday's regular season finale at No. 3 (Class 2A) Eagan. The Irish managed to score a goal of their own (Hannah Halterman on a pass from Becca Newman), control the ball for much of the last 20 minutes and build some positive momentum despite an eventual 4-1 loss to the South Suburban Conference runners-up. "I was proud of the girls because they never quit in the game," he said. "Character is important and how teams react to adversity is equally important.
Injuries to attacker Natalie Busher and libero Nicole Valentini made it a tough week for the Rosemount volleyball team. Busher suffered a high ankle sprain in practice last Monday and Valentini sustained a concussion in a recent car accident, leaving the Irish without much depth as they lost five out of seven matches and saw their record slip to 9-11. Last week started with a pair of competitive South Suburban Conference losses, a 3-1 setback to Eastview Tuesday at Irish Gym and a 3-0 sweep at the hands of fourth-ranked (Class 3A) Eagan on Thursday. The Irish regrouped for the 32-team St.