By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
After two weeks of this high school football season, it’s impossible to know how much of what we’re seeing now will be applicable by playoff time or even later this month.
Many of the 45 achievers below are regularly mentioned in this report. Others likely are considered surprises at this point – but might not be for much longer.
"Drive for Detroit" is sponsored by MI Student Aid.
Bay & Thumb
HEADLINER Freeland 29, Essexville Garber 20 A 2-0 start isn’t unfamiliar to the Falcons – they’ve begun with two straight wins every season this decade. But coming off last week’s one-point victory over Marshall, this win over the Dukes also is noteworthy for the way Freeland (2-0) held on through the end – especially against a Garber team that opened with a nice win against Boyne City and just missed the playoffs a year ago. This also was an opener in the new-look Tri-Valley Conference Central, which includes most of the best from the East and Central over the past few seasons. Click for more from the Midland Daily News.
Watch list Midland 45, Flint Carman-Ainsworth 0 Although the Cavaliers (0-2) have stumbled so far, Midland’s opening run still needs some mention with this win added to the opening victory over Traverse City West. The Chemics started 0-2 against the same two teams a year ago and still finished 9-4 and made the Division 2 Semifinals.
Remember this one Lapeer 43, Midland Dow 6 The Chargers (0-2) have made the playoffs six years in a row, so Lapeer (1-1) bouncing back from its opening-night loss to Lake Orion in a big way deserves notice.
More shoutouts Saginaw Arthur Hill 40, Flint Southwestern 16 The Lumberjacks (1-1) ended a 25-game losing streak with their highest-scoring performance since 2013. Flint Kearsley 28, Ann Arbor Huron 6 A second win over a larger opponent has the Hornets (2-0) a win away from equaling last season’s total as they play for their first winning record since 2003.
HEADLINER Birmingham Groves 24, West Bloomfield 17 The Lakers (1-1) have been considered among early Division 1 championship favorites this fall and had beaten Groves in back-to-back nonleague matchups over the last two seasons. But this shouldn’t be considered entirely stunning by the Falcons (2-0), who finished 10-3 last season and made the Division 2 Semifinals. The ending, on the other hand, was a little wild with a pair of late special teams fumbles turning into scores, including the game-winner. Click for more from the Oakland Press.
Watch list Lake Orion 37, Southfield Arts & Technology 7 The Dragons (2-0) have put themselves in the spotlight quickly with two impressive wins after also downing Lapeer in the opener. The run is especially notable after the team’s 0-2 starts the last two seasons.
Remember this one Romeo 37, Port Huron Northern 6 Romeo is 2-0 for the first time since its Division 1 championship season of 2015, winning big against a Northern team that went 10-2 last season and won big as well in its opener this fall.
More shoutouts Warren Michigan Collegiate 30, Flint Beecher 6 The Cougars (2-0) roll into this week’s matchup with Detroit Country Day with an impressive win over a Bucs team that went 8-4 last season and started this fall with a sizable win. South Lyon 29, Trenton 21 The Lions are picking up where they left off after winning the Lakes Valley Conference in 2018, with Trenton (1-1) providing a strong challenge as it looks to make the playoffs for the sixth straight season.
HEADLINER Portland 29, DeWitt 27 This very well could end up the game of the regular season in the Lansing area, with two of the region’s most successful programs facing off and the reigning Division 5 runner-up Raiders holding the Panthers off during a scoreless fourth quarter. DeWitt (1-1) had won 18 straight regular-season games and is 77-8 during the regular season this decade. Portland (2-0) has now won 18 straight regular-season games and 37 of its last 38. Click for more from the Lansing State Journal and see highlights below from State Champs Sports Network.
— STATE CHAMPS! (@statechampsnet) September 7, 2019
Watch list Holt 22, Hudsonville 21 Welcome back Rams. A pair of 3-6 finishes the last two seasons were helped along in part by 0-2 starts. But Holt is 2-0 for the first time since 2007 and after deciding to go for a 2-point conversion and the win late against the Eagles (1-1).
Remember this one Ithaca 16, Millington 0 The Yellowjackets (2-0) avenged last season’s playoff opener loss to the Cardinals (0-2), and now they are in the same league.
More shoutouts St. Johns 46, Ann Arbor Pioneer 33 After being shut out by East Lansing last week, the Redwings (1-1) bounced back by avenging a 2018 one-point loss to Pioneer (1-1). Lansing Catholic 56, Grand Rapids West Catholic 28 After two games this fall the Cougars have scored 112 points – nearly one-third of their total over 11 games a year ago – and this week beat the always playoff-bound Falcons (0-2) for the second straight season.
Northern Lower Peninsula
HEADLINER Maple City Glen Lake 28, Traverse City St. Francis 7 September isn’t two weeks old, but it’s hard to not anticipate some good things ahead for the Lakers (2-0) after they opened with a win over Millington and followed up by breaking an eight-game losing streak against the Gladiators (1-1) this weekend. St. Francis won last year’s meeting 50-12 and hadn’t been held to single digits in a regular-season game since 2013. Click for more from the Traverse City Record-Eagle and see highlights below from MI Sports Now.
— MISportsNow (@MISportsNow) September 7, 2019
Watch list Traverse City Central 37, Marquette 28 After falling to DeWitt by just five points at home Week 1, the Trojans (1-1) hit the road and ran their winning streak to six straight over Marquette (0-2).
Remember this one Charlevoix 18, Boyne City 14 The Rayders (2-0) won just once in 2018 and last opened with two straight wins in 2016, when they also last made the playoffs.
More shoutouts Cheboygan 8, Grayling 6 The Chiefs (1-1) are working toward their first playoff berth since 2013 and are a step closer after ending a recent three-game losing streak to Grayling (1-1). McBain 31, Roscommon 0 The Ramblers (1-1) also bounced back from a Week 1 loss by downing a Bucks team that is so far winless but finished 10-2 a year ago.
Southeast & Border
HEADLINER Erie Mason 80, Britton Deerfield 42 These two tied for the 14th-most points in an 11-player game where the losing team put up at least 40, and Erie Mason improved to 2-0 for the first time since 2003 while guaranteeing to tie its best finish for an entire season since 2005. Through two weeks quarterback Noah Beaudrie has thrown for 473 yards and six touchdowns and run for 509 and eight scores. The Patriots (1-1), meanwhile, upped their season scoring average to 35 ppg despite the defeat.
Watch list Clinton 45, Blissfield 13 Last season’s Tri-County Conference runner-up Clinton (2-0) will enter league play 2-0 for the first time since 2016 after avenging last season’s loss to the Royals (1-1), who opened this fall with a 19-point win over reigning TCC champion Ottawa Lake Whiteford.
Remember this one Sand Creek 31, Adrian Lenawee Christian 28 The Aggies (2-0) also play in the strong TCC, so this last-minute win over postseason regular Lenawee Christian (1-1) could end up a difference-maker when playoff selection time rolls around.
More shoutouts Jackson Lumen Christi 22, Parma Western 7 The Titans (2-0) pushed their winning streak to 25, and if it continues to grow this Interstate 8 Athletic Conference opener could be looked back at as key with Western (1-1) staying close into the fourth quarter. Temperance Bedford 20, Flushing 19 Bedford bounced back from a Week 1 loss to earn what could be a key win for its playoff hopes against a Flushing team that has made the last two postseasons but finds itself 0-2 with those defeats by a combined 12 points.
HEADLINER Portage Northern 14, Stevensville Lakeshore 6 In keeping with recent history, this matchup was decided by eight or fewer points for the eighth time in nine seasons and gives reigning league co-champ Northern (2-0) a valuable early edge in the Southwestern Michigan Athletic Conference West race. But 2017 champ Lakeshore is far from being out of it, and a few more contenders also could have a say. Click for more from JoeInsider.com and see below for highlights from FOX 17.
— FOX 17 Blitz (@FOX17Blitz) September 7, 2019
Watch list Kalamazoo Central 40, Portage Central 27 Defeating Portage Central last season was the first sign of Kalamazoo Central’s rise that turned into a league title and its first playoff berth since 2004. So the Maroon Giants (1-1) should be excited about the possibilities after bouncing back from last week’s one-point defeat to Mattawan with another notable victory over the annually-strong Mustangs (1-1).
Remember this one Cassopolis 28, Mendon 0 The Rangers (2-0) ran their scoring margin for the season to an early 78-0 advantage and earned a significant edge in their quest to repeat as Southwest 10 Conference champions, as 2017 winner Mendon (1-1) is always in the hunt as well.
More shoutouts Watervliet 22, Saugatuck 14 This was a major win as the Panthers (1-1) work to rebound from last season’s 2-7 finish; Saugatuck (1-1) was 9-2 a year ago and has won at least that many games four straight seasons. Battle Creek Lakeview 28, Mattawan 12 The Spartans (2-0) have had a few tough seasons but with this win tied their victory total of a year ago and against a Mattawan team that has made the playoffs two straight years.
HEADLINER Iron Mountain 42, Ishpeming Westwood 22 Two weeks into the season, Iron Mountain (2-0) could have its two main obstacles out of the way as it looks to challenge reigning champion Calumet in the Western Peninsula Athletic Conference Copper. This week’s win followed up last week’s over Negaunee, and the Copper Kings await in Week 6. Westwood (1-1) was second and Iron Mountain third in the league last season. Click for more from the Iron Mountain Daily News.
Watch list Ishpeming 36, Lake Linden-Hubbell 34 The Hematites (2-0) are reigning champions in the West-PAC Iron and setting themselves up to be in the mix again, although the Lakes (1-1) could still find themselves in contention as well with a little help.
Remember this one Manistique 28, Gwinn 8 The Emeralds broke a 21-game losing streak on the field (not counting forfeits for games not played last season) with their first win since Week 9 of 2015.
More shoutouts Gladstone 20, Gaylord 7 The Braves (2-0) are halfway to last year’s win total with this one over a Gaylord team that made the playoffs last season and now sits 1-1 this fall. Sault Ste. Marie 20, Alpena 14 The Blue Devils (2-0) also downed a Big North Conference opponent, avenging last season’s loss to the Wildcats (0-2).
HEADLINER Muskegon 41, Detroit Martin Luther King 18 It’s impossible to not lead with Muskegon for the second straight week after the Big Reds defeated their second reigning MHSAA champion already this fall. And this one surely meant a little more as it came in a rematch of last season’s Division 3 championship game, won by King 41-25. Click for more from the Muskegon Chronicle.
VIDEO: Check out the highlights of the Muskegon (@mbigredsports) at Detroit King football game from last night.
— STATE CHAMPS! (@statechampsnet) September 7, 2019
Watch list Caledonia 19, Cedar Springs 12 The Fighting Scots’ Week 1 loss to Holt is looking even better after Holt beat Hudsonville, and this victory over Cedar Springs (1-1) says a lot about Caledonia’s potential heading into Ottawa-Kent Conference Red play starting this week.
Remember this one Byron Center 33, Middleville Thornapple Kellogg 14 After two straight sub-.500 seasons, the Bulldogs (2-0) also could be on their way to big things after sending the Trojans to 1-1.
More shoutouts Rockford 24, Lowell 7 The Rams evened these teams’ latest four-game series at 2-2 and moved to 2-0 to start a season for the first time since 2014. Zeeland West 48, Grand Rapids Christian 27 The Dux (2-0) added to their opening-night win over East Grand Rapids with another impressive one, as the Eagles (0-2) likely will be in the mix again in the O-K Gold.
HEADLINER Pellston 42, Posen 38 The Hornets finished 4-5 in their first season of 8-player football in 2018, winning four of their final six games. This fall they’re off to a 2-0 start, and a first winning season since 1995 might become part of the conversation soon. Pellston scored the go-ahead touchdown against Posen (0-2) with 5:03 to play after trailing by 18 midway through the third quarter. Click for more from the Petoskey News-Review.
Watch list Vestaburg 22, North Adams-Jerome 6 The Wolverines (2-0) moved to 8-player football this fall, and so far so good after finishing 0-9 last season and 1-8 in 2017.
Remember this one Bridgman 46, St. Joseph Lake Michigan Catholic 8 It also will be interesting to see how this first season of 8-player goes for Bridgman, which has outscored its first two opponents by a combined 102-24.
More shoutouts Martin 20, Wyoming Tri-unity Christian 0 Martin (2-0) also is a first-year 8-player program and its scores the last two weeks have been much closer, but against two of the traditional best in Bellevue and this week Tri-unity (0-2). Powers North Central 62, Rapid River 6 These Jets (2-0) are scoring like the title-winning Jets of a few seasons ago, with a combined 128 points over their first two games.
Second Half’s weekly “Drive for Detroit” previews are powered by MI Student Aid, a part of the Office of Postsecondary Financial Planning located within the Michigan Department of Treasury. MI Student Aid encourages students to pursue postsecondary education by providing access to student financial resources and information. MI Student Aid administers the state’s 529 college savings programs (MET/MESP), as well as scholarship and grant programs that help make college Accessible, Affordable and Attainable for you. Connect with MI Student Aid at www.michigan.gov/mistudentaid and find more information on Facebook and Twitter @mistudentaid.
PHOTO: A Marquette defender closes in Friday as Traverse City Central quarterback Peyton Smith decides if he will hand off or keep the ball. (Photo by Cara Kamps.)
We have our first league champions of the 2023 football season, and setups for several deciding matchups to come over the next week or two.
Explanations of many of those make up most of our “Week 6 Review” – but with playoff selection now just three weeks away, you’ll notice our attention has become focused as well on those races for the 32 qualifying spots in our MHSAA 11-player divisions and top 16s that make the 8-player brackets.
The state rankings mentioned frequently below are Michigan High School Football Coaches Association polls. The playoff-point averages are tracked by the MHSAA and used to determine the postseason fields – and discussion of movement on those lists will be prevalent through the rest of the regular season.
Bay & Thumb
HEADLINER Almont 30, Croswell-Lexington 20 Almont set itself up to clinch a share of the Blue Water Area Conference title this week or next by moving into first place alone in this matchup of co-leaders heading into the weekend. The Division 6 No. 2 Raiders (6-0) also tied their win totals of both of the last two seasons as they made another move toward potentially their best finish since 2019. Croswell-Lexington (5-1), No. 8 in Division 4, will be rooting for Richmond this week and Yale next to deal Almont a loss that would set up a possible shared league title. Click for more from the Port Huron Times Herald.
— WXYZ Detroit (@wxyzdetroit) September 30, 2023
Watch list Fenton 40, Linden 32 After sharing the Flint Metro League Stripes title with Linden and Swartz Creek last season, Fenton (5-1) clinched a share of this season’s championship and left Linden (4-2) holding out hope for a share if Flushing can upset the Tigers this week.
On the move Chesaning 28, Ovid-Elsie 19 Chesaning (5-1) can clinch a share of the Mid-Michigan Activities Conference title this week or next after stopping Ovid-Elsie (3-3) in its attempt to reset the standings. Marine City 36, Madison Heights Lamphere 13 Marine City (5-1) clinched a share of the Macomb Area Conference Silver championship with one more league game to play, sending Lamphere to 4-2. Grand Blanc 44, Lapeer 26 The Saginaw Valley Red is a two-team race with Grand Blanc (4-2) and Davison the only teams left undefeated in league play, and Lapeer (4-2) joining Saginaw Heritage with a second league loss and tied for third.
HEADLINER Macomb Dakota 31, Romeo 19 The Macomb Area Conference Red is one of the most monitored leagues in the state every season because of the powerful Division 1 contenders that traditionally emerge – and four have a chance to emerge as league champion this month. Romeo entered the weekend alone in first, but now four teams are 3-1 in league play with one game to go and co-champions guaranteed with those four teams facing off across two matchups this week. Click for more from the Macomb Daily.
Watch list Gibraltar Carlson 28, Trenton 23 Carlson (5-1) lined itself up to face Allen Park in Week 8 for some piece of the Downriver League title, as those two teams are left as undefeated in league play – although Trenton (4-2) could break things up a bit as the Trojans face Allen Park this week.
On the move Belleville 35, Westland John Glenn 8 Belleville (6-0) and Week 8 opponent Dearborn Fordson remain alone atop the Kensington Lakes Activities Association East after the Tigers dealt John Glenn (5-1) this first loss. Clarkston 44, West Bloomfield 36 After an 0-2 start, Clarkston (4-2) has won four straight and set itself up to face Lake Orion this week for a winner-take-all matchup in the Oakland Activities Association Red. The win also pushed the Wolves from 10 spots behind West Bloomfield (4-2) to three ahead on the Division 1 playoff points list. Detroit Voyageur 34, Detroit Edison 32 The Cougars (4-2) bounced back from a Week 5 loss to deal a second straight to Edison (4-2), which entered the week ranked No. 9 in the Division 6 coaches poll. The win also brought Voyageur back into the Division 6 playoff picture at No. 25 on the playoff points list after it had fallen back to No. 34.
HEADLINER Corunna 35, Goodrich 7 This has to rank at or near the top of the wins Corunna (6-0) has piled up over its recent resurgence, as it not only guaranteed the Cavaliers a share of the Flint Metro League Stars title but also handed the first loss to the No. 2-ranked team in Division 4. Corunna, ranked No. 5 in Division 5, led 28-0 at halftime on the way to its first win over the Martians (5-1) since 2016. Click for more from the Flint Journal.
A Flint Metro League-Stars collision! Both teams came in undefeated on the season, but Goodrich had a number on the Cavs since 2016.
Corunna would dominate on home turf, and take first place in the league. Final score, 35-7. pic.twitter.com/SSLb3VkGZz
— Miriam Bingham (@MiriamBingham) September 30, 2023
Watch list Pewamo-Westphalia 27, Fowler 14 After losing its opener to still-undefeated North Muskegon, P-W has won its last five and sits atop the Central Michigan Athletic Conference standings with two league games to play. Fowler (5-1) had defeated the Pirates last season to create a three-way CMAC shared title between those two and Laingsburg.
On the move DeWitt 41, Grand Ledge 38 The last two meetings between these two have come down to seven points or fewer, with last year’s Grand Ledge win helping the Comets (5-1) share the Capital Area Activities Conference Blue title and this year’s DeWitt win knocking Grand Ledge out of first place while keeping the Panthers (3-2) in the mix. Beal City 30, Evart 16 The matchup for first place in the Highland Conference went to Beal City (6-0), which can clinch with another win over the next two weeks while second-place Evart (4-2) will need help to get a share. New Lothrop 34, Montrose 8 New Lothrop’s MMAC title hopes dimmed with a Week 2 loss to Chesaning, but the Hornets (5-1) are up to No. 9 in Division 8 playoff-points average with two wins over Division 6 schools and this one over the Division 7 Rams (4-2).
Northern Lower Peninsula
HEADLINER Charlevoix 30, Elk Rapids 7 The Division 7 No. 9 Rayders (5-1) continued to roll through Northern Michigan Football Conference Leaders play, clinching a share of the league title with their fifth-straight win overall this season. Charlevoix can finish the championship outright in Week 8 at Tawas, and its final three regular-season opponents are combined 3-15 – making a fourth-straight season reaching eight wins look like a growing possibility. Click for more from the Petoskey News-Review.
Watch list Petoskey 36, Cadillac 21 There’s definitely work to do over the next three weeks for Petoskey (4-2) to make the playoffs, but the Northmen have guaranteed their best finish since 2018 – the last time they’d defeated Cadillac (3-3). They sit No. 23 on the Division 3 playoff points list.
On the move Benzie Central 31, Boyne City 24 The Huskies (3-3) will need Tawas’ help to catch a share of that Leaders title, but in avenging last season’s 51-35 loss to Boyne City (2-4) they’ve moved closer to possibly earning their best finish since 2018. Lake City 28, McBain 22 (2OT) The Trojans (4-2) defeated McBain (4-2) by six points for the second-straight season, this time helping them hold steady at the No. 23 spot on the Division 6 playoff points list. Ogemaw Heights 47, Flint Powers Catholic 9 Ogemaw Heights (5-1) ran its winning streak to five as it heads into this week’s NMFC Legends decider against Kingsley.
Southeast & Border
HEADLINER Michigan Center 32, Grass Lake 27 Michigan Center’s next two weeks will be massive, but the Cardinals earned that billing. By avenging last season’s 36-29 loss to Grass Lake (4-2), Michigan Center (5-1) upped what’s at stake in this week’s matchup with Napoleon as those share the lead in the Cascades Conference East – and with third-place Manchester waiting in Week 3 with its only loss to Napoleon. Click for more from JTV.
Watch list Parma Western 21, Battle Creek Harper Creek 6 The Panthers (6-0) also have set up a matchup of league co-leaders, downing third-place Harper Creek (4-2) on the way to this week’s meeting with Hastings for first in the Interstate 8 Athletic Conference.
On the move Jackson Northwest 23, Ann Arbor Father Gabriel Richard 14 Northwest (3-3) has made massive strides the last two seasons, and this win has to rank up there as AAGR (5-1) had dominated its first five opponents. Adrian 22, Jackson 9 This Adrian win, along with Chelsea’s over Tecumseh, gave Chelsea a share of the Southeastern Conference White title – although if Jackson (4-2) defeats Chelsea this week, those two and possibly Adrian all could share the championship. Saline 43, Ann Arbor Huron 7 Saline (6-0) held onto its one-game lead in the SEC Red and sent Huron (3-3) into a third-place tie. The Hornets finish the league schedule with the seventh and eighth-place teams as they look to claim what would be a ninth Red title over the last decade but after finishing second a year ago.
HEADLINER Constantine 50, Allegan 14 Five of six teams in the Southwestern Athletic Conference Lakeshore are .500 or better, and Constantine is leading the way at 5-1 and as one of three contenders that have started league play 2-0. The Division 6 No. 7 Falcons scored their season high in bringing some separation to the league standings by sending Allegan to 4-2. Click for more from the Kalamazoo Gazette.
— FOX 17 Blitz (@FOX17Blitz) September 30, 2023
Watch list Niles Brandywine 30, Dowagiac 7 Brandywine may be only 2-4, but the Bobcats moved up from No. 46 to 33 on the Division 7 playoff-points list by stunning Division 5 Dowagiac (4-2). Brandywine has another Division 5 opponent next in Benton Harbor.
On the move Berrien Springs 35, Buchanan 14 This win, combined with Brandywine’s over Dowagiac, put Berrien Springs (3-2) alone in first place in the Lakeland Conference – and after a 20-14 loss to Buchanan (3-3) last season cost the Shamrocks the league title. Richland Gull Lake 27, Benton Harbor 16 Gull Lake (4-2) already has bettered its record from a year ago, and with two wins over the next three weeks would post its best finish since 2009. Paw Paw 35, Edwardsburg 0 The Red Wolves (6-0) ended a 15-game losing streak against the rival Eddies (3-3) sending them out of first place in the Wolverine Conference while maintaining a tie for the top spot with Niles.
HEADLINER Menominee 44, Gladstone 26 One down, two to go as Western Peninsula Athletic Conference leader Menominee began a difficult three-game run against the three teams that entered the weekend tied for second in the league. Following Landan Bardowski among others, the Maroons (6-0) scored the most points Gladstone had given up in a game since 2017 – although Gladstone (4-2) also did some fine work offensively against a Menominee defense that had allowed just six points total over the first five weeks. Click for more from RRN Sports.
Trevor Theuerkauf passes to Aaron Brunelle for the Menominee touchdown tonight against Gladstone. pic.twitter.com/u1XZ8PGE4I
— Jack Hall (@JackHall600) September 30, 2023
Watch list Marquette 38, Escanaba 20 After playing an old rival as part of a new league, Marquette (3-2) is tied for second in the Big North Conference but more notably has equaled last season’s win total and sits among the top 32 on the Division 3 playoff-points list for the second-straight week.
On the move Calumet 17, Houghton 16 The Copper Kings (2-4) broke a three-game losing streak and now have 10 spots to climb to qualify for the Division 6 playoffs, but with some valuable opportunities to do so. Iron Mountain 55, Manistique 14 The Mountaineers (6-0) clinched a share of the West-PAC Iron championship with another big performance; they have won all of their games by at least 40 points. Sault Ste. Marie 50, Maple City Glen Lake 7 Sault Ste. Marie (4-2) bounced back from a Week 5 loss to Marquette to hold steady among the top 32 on the Division 4 playoff-points list, while Glen Lake (3-3) remains among the qualifying group in Division 8.
HEADLINER Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central 20, East Grand Rapids 0 There was notable reshuffling in the Ottawa-Kent Conference White over the weekend, as the league has six teams 4-2 or better and four tied for first thanks in part to FHC’s shutout of the Pioneers. The Rangers (5-1), No. 2 in Division 3, now share the top spot with EGR (5-1), Lowell and Byron Center. Click for more from the Grand Rapids Press.
Check out the moments from Forest Hills Central's win over East Grand Rapids on September 29th, 2023! JT Hartman's performance led to a rushing touchdown and an fumble return for a touchdown in the 20-0 victory. Powered by @lawrencetechu. Visit https://t.co/Uq6Fmk66eG pic.twitter.com/1Yp6eDpknW
— STATE CHAMPS! Michigan (@statechampsmich) October 1, 2023
Watch list Spring Lake 35, Allendale 28 The O-K Blue has five teams at 4-2 or better, with Grand Rapids West Catholic alone at the top after Spring Lake (5-1) rebounded from a Week 5 loss to GRWC to hand Allendale (5-1) this defeat. But Spring Lake also just became Allendale’s biggest fan – Allendale gets West Catholic this week.
On the move Lowell 38, Byron Center 28 Matching Forest Hills Central, Lowell also fought back into the O-K Blue race as these two join FHC and EGR as 3-1 in the league and 5-1 overall. Muskegon 49, Zeeland East 14 The Big Reds (4-2) have won four straight to start the O-K Green schedule and set up this week’s meeting with co-leader Zeeland West. Impressive as well, Muskegon’s last three opponents, including East, are 4-2. Caledonia 30, Hudsonville 0 Division 2 top-ranked Caledonia (5-1) has followed up its loss to Rockford two weeks ago with two power-packed wins, in this one handing Hudsonville (4-2) its first shutout since 2012.
HEADLINER Adrian Lenawee Christian 73, Mendon 20 Lenawee Christian (6-0) put up 63 of those points in the first half, fully justifying its top ranking in Division 2 – and the Cougars could be considered the top team in all of 8-player as Division 1 top-ranked St. Ignace joined No. 2 Mendon (5-1) in losing for the first time over the weekend. Sam Lutz ran for four touchdowns and threw for four more for the Cougars, while Jack McCaw ran for 210 yards and three scores for Mendon. Click for more from the Adrian Daily Telegram.
Watch list Newberry 46, St. Ignace 40 Newberry (5-1) has won a playoff game each of the last three seasons and is hardly an unknown – but St. Ignace (5-1) had won all but one of its games this fall by double digits, making this an even more impressive result.
On the move Brown City 60, Mayville 0 This was another matchup of undefeated teams, and Brown City now sits alone atop the North Central Thumb League Stars with Mayville (5-1) and Kingston a game back. Crystal Falls Forest Park 36, Lake Linden-Hubbell 28 With Lake Linden-Hubbell (3-3) dealing Powers North Central a loss two weeks ago, the Great Lakes Eight Conference West has a different look at the top for the first time in a while with Norway leading the way but Forest Park (5-1) also in the mix if the Knights trip up. Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart 25, Fulton 18 The Irish (6-0) have a one-game lead on Portland St. Patrick in the Mid-State Activities Conference with this win over Fulton (4-2) joining a Week 3 one-pointer over the Shamrocks as key reasons why.
Second Half’s weekly “1st & Goal” previews and reviews are powered by MI Student Aid, a part of the Office of Postsecondary Financial Planning located within the Michigan Department of Treasury. MI Student Aid encourages students to pursue postsecondary education by providing access to student financial resources and information. MI Student Aid administers the state’s 529 college savings programs (MET/MESP), as well as scholarship and grant programs that help make college Accessible, Affordable and Attainable for you. Connect with MI Student Aid at www.michigan.gov/mistudentaid and find more information on Facebook and X (Twitter) @mistudentaid.
PHOTOS (Top) Grand Blanc's Jimmy Lacy (13) applies pressure as Lapeer takes to the air Friday. (Middle) Negaunee's Ian Engstrom (5) tries to catch a pass just a little bit out of his reach. (Top photo by Terry Lyons, middle photo by Cara Kamps.)