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Caledonia High School’s Tate Meiners (25) tackles Paynesville’s Grant Ludwig during a Class AA state semifinal game at U.S. Bank Stadium last season. Meiners is the Warriors' (10-0) leading receiver this season.

CALEDONIA — Tate Meiners knows what success looks like. So, it wasn’t a difficult decision for the Caledonia High School senior to choose to play baseball at Augustana University — the defending NCAA Division II national champions.

Before he heads to Sioux Falls, S.D., this summer, he aims to help the Warriors football team keep winning MSHSL Class AA playoff games.

The Warriors (10-0) — who are riding a 51-game winning streak — will face New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva (9-2) in a state quarterfinal game at 7 p.m. Friday in Burnsville, Minn. The winner will play in the state semifinals at 2 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.

Caledonia, which has won the last three Class AA state titles, would like nothing better than to make it four straight.

While Meiners' short-term future is all about football, he said the reason for choosing Augustana was for its success on the baseball diamond. He hopes to play some on the infield, and he has a desire to pitch for the Vikings as well.

“It was an easy decision,” Meiners said. “Being from Caledonia, we’re a successful program and I would like to join another successful program. I know what success takes. Our coaching staff is really good at building success over the last few years. I know for programs to be successful, they have to have a good coaching staff and they have to have committed players. That’s why I wanted to join (Augustana).”

Meiners hasn’t fully decided on what he wants to study in college, but is considering a career in the medical field. Meiners said he is receiving an academic scholarship.

Meiners, a 5-foot-11, 190-pounder, acknowledges that the Warriors’ overall athletic success has left a big impact. He also says weightlifting on a daily basis has made him a stronger and better athlete.

On the football field, meanwhile, Meiners is the top receiver for junior quarterback Noah King. He leads the team in receptions (36), receiving yards (599) and touchdowns (6). Meiners also has an interception while playing as a defensive back.

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Fruechte

“He’s smart. He’s a real smart athlete,” Caledonia coach Carl Fruechte said. “He understands what he needs to do and his assignments. He’s very physical. He's a great tackler. He loves the physical part of football. He's’ very dependable.

"He knows what Coach (Brent) Schroeder is trying to do. He knows the system, he understands his gaps. He’s cool under pressure.”

The Warriors will need to be cool under pressure Friday in order to make it to the state semifinals again.

“We have to make sure we know our assignments, and we have to know them all the time,” Fruechte said. “In short, we can’t have any brain farts. We have to be really focused. We have to be very mature and pay very close attention to detail. They have to understand every detail if they want to get back to U.S. Bank (Stadium).”

The Panthers are under first-year coach Mark Kruger.

“They’re a pretty solid team,” Meiners said. “Their O-Line and D-Line are very strong but just like every other team, we have to do our job. They have some really lengthy guys. They have some talented fast guys and we have to find a way to beat it.”