Grand Meadow head coach picks up 150th win in state title victory

Grand Meadow head coach Gary Sloan is mobbed by his team following the Superlarks' 28-6 win over Underwood in the Minnesota Prep Bowl Nine Man championship Friday at Mall of America Field in Minneapolis. The win was also Sloan's 150th win as a head coach. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

Grand Meadow head coach Gary Sloan is mobbed by his team following the Superlarks’ 28-6 win over Underwood in the Minnesota Prep Bowl Nine Man championship Friday at Mall of America Field in Minneapolis. The win was also Sloan’s 150th win as a head coach. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

It was an emotional day for Grand Meadow head football coach Gary Sloan.

Sloan led his team to the first state title in the history of Grand Meadow High School and he also notched his 150th career win in doing so.

Sloan, who has coached the team for 21 years, also had the honor of having his twin sons, GM sophomores Trevor and Tyler on the team, although Tyler was not in uniform due to an injury.

“It’s pretty special having them involved in the program,” Sloan said “Coaching takes a toll on your family and it means a lot to all of us.”

Sloan has had plenty of good teams over the years and the Larks have played in the state finals the last two seasons. This season GM wasn’t even ranked at the end of the season and it was seeded No. 3 in its own sections.

That didn’t stop the Larks from earning their first state title in school history this season as they beat Mountain Lake 35-18 and topped Kittson County Central 21-7 before beating Underwood 28-6 in the Prep Bowl Friday.

The Larks wanted to thank Sloan for what he’d done, but they didn’t want to do too much in case they lost on Friday.

“We were hesitant because we didn’t want karma to catch up to us, but during the week we signed a helmet for his 150th win,” GM junior running back Landon Jacobson said. “It felt to great to win for him and I don’t even know how to put it into words.”

GM senior quarterback Trenton Bleifus said the team wanted to make sure they won a state title not just for themselves, but for Sloan as well.

“That’s the main reason I wanted to win was for coach’s 150th win,” Bleifus said. “I thought that would be great. He’s always been one of my favorite coaches and he taught me how to throw. He’s the reason I’ve been successful.”

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