Playoff Semifinal Results: Who Punched Their Ticket?

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It's all set boys and girls! We know who stood up to the pressure and came out with the victory. Come on out and support your local team, or just come and watch some awesome football. $10 for a day of fun is nothing, especially if you have some young children who enjoy football. Give them a chance to feel how great a state championship can be! I'll be there and so should you! Let's get to the games!

Division 1

Macomb Dakota 17 Detroit Catholic Central 7

In a mistake filled game, it comes down to who makes the best play late in the game. Each team had five turnovers and typically you don’t win when you turn the ball over that much. Leading Dakota was Rodney Hush who caught six balls for 113 yards and two touchdowns. Mike Martin was a load for Macomb to block and he did some good things for DCC. In the end though, it was the second touchdown for Hush that put Catholic Central away for good.

Livonia Stevenson 40 Troy 35

Troy quarterback Branko Hamilton threw an interception with 3:17 left in the game on a screen pass which was perfectly sniffed out by linebacker Joey Doulette. This gave Stevenson a chance on a day that went less than perfect for the Spartans. After being up 21-7, Troy scored 21 unanswered points to take the lead. The Spartans answered, but missed the extra point to leave the score 28-27. Nick Gallina scored his second touchdown to put Troy up 35-27, but Livonia ripped off an 80 yard run for a touchdown to get close, but a missed two point conversion kept the score 35-33. The interception with 3:17 left in the fourth set up the scoring drive that culminated in Mitchell White’s 10 yard touchdown strike to Wade Stahl with 1:34 left in the game. That ended up being the final score.

Division 2

Midland 31 Lowell 28

What a game! These are the types that you hope all the playoff games will be. The Chemics were down 28-7 in the first half but were able to move the ball thanks to quarterback Andrew Maxwell. He cut the lead to 28-14 on a 76 yard scoring drive to end the first half. The second half was all Midland. They converted a fake punt, recovered an onside kick, and kicked a field goal in addition to the two second half touchdowns. Lowell had a chance to score late in the game. With 2:24 left, Kyle Nichol took the ball and his team 89 yards to the Chemic one yard line with less than 20 seconds remaining. He spiked the ball, but didn’t see that it was fourth and 1, so the spike turned the ball over. Midland ran a quarterback sneak to run out the clock and punch their ticket to Detroit.

Detroit Martin Luther King 14 Rochester Adams 7

Adams had their chances. Twice they drove deep into MLK territory, only to be pushed backwards.  They even were down there with the game clock running out, but were unable to punch it in. Rochester scored on their first possession, but that was it. King came back and scored with 11 seconds left before halftime to make it close at 7-6. Adams had the ball at the King 20 after a blocked punt, but was pushed back to the 42. The punted and pinned King close to their end zone and forced a punt. The punt was fumbled and King recovered which lead to the touchdown. Darrin Williams from King had 147 yards and the game winning touchdown on 23 carries. Donavan Dickerson threw for 179 and a touchdown.

Division 3

East Grand Rapids 28 St. Joseph 7

EGR’s defense was huge in this game. They had six takeaways and limited St. Joe’s rushing attack to 50 yards. In the second quarter, John Noreen scooped up his first fumble of the season and ran it in from the 10 yard line to give EGR a 14-0 lead. Junior Joe Glendening scored three times on 30 carries for 105 yards. The score was 21-0 at the half. In the third quarter, the Bears got on the board with a 26 yard pass from Ethan Schweir to Brad Guinane. The Pioneers intercepted the ball on St. Joe’s final possession on a pass thrown into the end zone.

Orchard Lake St. Mary’s 49 East Lansing 21

The Eaglets dominated on both sides of the ball. Their offensive and defensive lines took over the game and that’s what is needed for a team to win an important game like this. The offensive line was able to get their running backs across the line of scrimmage for positive yards. It was 21-0 in the first quarter before East Lansing standout running back Issac Harper touched the ball. OLSM racked up 369 yards on the ground, including 152 and three touchdowns by Dominique White. Even though Orchard Lake St. Mary’s dominated the game, Harper was able to set a season rushing record with 320 carries for 2,464 yards and 35 touchdowns.

Division 4

Marine City 35 Kingsford 21

This is another game where the defense came through. Even though the first three drives resulted in touchdowns, it wasn’t until late in the second half that Marine City started to pull away. The Mariners scored a touchdown right before the half to even the score at 14. Brendon Kay accounted for five touchdowns (three through the air) for the third consecutive week. It was close at the end, but an interception with 1:24 left in the fourth quarter sealed the deal for the Marine City Mariners and sent them on to play at Ford Field. Josh Droese led the Flivvers in rushing with 118, 58 of which came on a fourth an inches in the third quarter to even the score at 21.

Detroit Country Day 37 Zeeland West 30

After leading the whole day, Zeeland West gave up 29 fourth quarter points to make the score 30-29 with 34 seconds remaining in the game. Country Day decided to run a trick play. The “hook and ladder” was run to perfection. Quarterback Stefan Ede threw a 12 yard pass to Patrick Leary who pitched to Bennie Fowler who ran it 53 yards for a touchdown. Jonas Gray scored the two point conversion to make the score 37-30. The Dux weren’t finished though. They ran a pass play and tried to pitch it, but it was stuffed at the Yellowjacket’s 35 yard line. Running back Jonas Gray ran for 320 yards and four touchdowns on 29 carries for Detroit Country Day.

Division 5

Menominee 40 Grand Rapids West Catholic 20

Another win to keep the 27 game winning streak alive for Menominee. Ethan Shaver ran for 234 yards and a touchdown. He also passed for 115 and four touchdowns on seven completions. His counterpart for GRWC Kirk Deering passed for two touchdowns and ran another, but also threw five interceptions. It was close in the first half, with West Catholic moving the ball down to the 15 yard line of Menominee before fumbling it away and losing a chance to even the score at 20 and possibly take the lead going into halftime. It was a heck of a season for Grand Rapids West Catholic, but Menominee is a very tough team and West Catholic is starting to get their program on the right track. Deering and Shaver talked after the game and Deering wants them to win the state title not only for Menominee but for Grand Rapids West Catholic.

Jackson Lumen Christi 41 Madison Heights Madison 6

In the rout of last year’s Division 5 runner up, the Titans put up 28 first half points. The dynamic duo for MHM Deandre Johnson and Decarlos Montgomery never got on track and ended the game with a combined 68 yards rushing. Four of the five first half possessions for Madison Heights ended without even gaining a first down. The Titans were led by sophomore quarterback Conor Sullivan who scored on runs of one and two yards. He also had a passing touchdown. MHM didn’t get into the end zone until Johnson scored on a two yard run when the Titans reserves were playing late in the fourth quarter.

Division 6

Saginaw Nouvel 17 Montague 14

Last season, it was Nouvel’s offense who took them to the championship. This year, it’s their defense. The Panthers came up with three stops in the fourth quarter to beat Montague and move into the state finals. Nouvel first stopped Montague when they have first and goal from the five. After having to punt, Nouvel again had to stop Montague who had the ball at the Nouvel 27 yard line. A tipped pass became an interception for Alexander Lake to end another series. Montague got the ball back with a little over 1:20 left in the game and pushed down to the 15 and had an apparent touchdown, but the player was ruled to have stepped out of bounds. Another interception, this time by Jonathon Ludka helped finish the game for the Panthers.

Blissfield 21 Leslie 14 (2OT)

As hard as Leslie tried to knock out Blissfield, they were unable to break the spirit of the Royals. They had chances that went bad, like an interception in the red zone after recovering a fumble, or fumbling the ball away on fourth and two at the six yard line. John Estes threw a hook shot on a two point conversion to tie the game for Blissfield. The first overtime session yielded no points for either team. In the second overtime period, Blissfield ran a sweep for ten yards and a touchdown. Leslie drove to the two yard line and then had an offside penalty on third down. The next play was a pass that fell incomplete to end the game.

Division 7

Traverse City St. Francis 42 Harbor Beach 0

Another game, another shutout for the Gladiators. This time, the victim was Harbor Beach. The defense for TCSF has fantastic in the playoffs. They’ve outscored their opponents 188-8. TCSF had 317 yards of offense to Harbor Beach’s 45. The Pirates only had four first downs on the day. St. Francis scored two touchdowns in about a minute to end the first half. After a fumble on their first possession of the second half, they were able to stuff Harbor Beach and cause a fumble, which was returned 70 yards for a touchdown. They will have their hands full with small school powerhouse Mendon.

Mendon 34 Sand Creek 0

Both of the games in Division 7 were shutouts. Mendon was able to have their way with Sand Creek. Leading the way was the Hornet’s linebacker and Division 7/8 Player of the Year Joe Smith. The 6 foot 225 pound player helped his team get the chance at their 10th state title. Even though Mendon was the smaller team, they hit very well and kept after them, according to their coach John Schwartz. Kyle Maurer recovered a fumble and raced 81 yards to pay dirt. It was a long day for Sand Creek.

Division 8

Crystal Falls Forest Park 22 Beal City 7

It was a close first half with the score at the break being 8-7. It was the second half that propelled the Trojans into the state finals for the fourth time in eight seasons. They held the Beal City Aggies to 16 yards of offense in the second half and under 100 for the game. Two fumbles and two interceptions in the second half put Beal City in a tough position to win the game. Kyle LaVacque returned from injury to carry the ball 41 times for 169 yards and two touchdowns. CFFP wasn’t immune to turnovers though. They fumbled four times in the first half and lost two of them. We’ll have to wait and see if they can win their first state title in 31 years.

Fulton-Middleton 40 Climax-Scotts 36

What a close game! Climax-Scott’s quarterback Jordan Langs had a 64 yard run to take the lead 36-33 with about five minutes left. They were caught up in the moment and allowed a 69 yard drive to occur. Fulton-Middleton drove 69 yards and scored with less than a minute to play to take the four point lead. C-S was outmatched when it comes to size, but the smaller team packed quite a punch. Clevelyn Jefferson from F-M was held to 108 yards after running wild on everyone in the playoffs. Jordan Langs played a heck of a game at quarterback and also came up with 12 tackles. Ben Weber rushed for 120 yards and two touchdowns for F-M.