Drive for Detroit: Week 3 in Review

September 11, 2017

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

There are a handful of significant turning points every Michigan high school football season – and Week 3 always proves to be the first.

There are 106 11-player and 12 8-player teams statewide celebrating 3-0 starts, including a good share enjoying big-time turnarounds from a year ago. There also are 117 11-player teams – including a handful of notable powers – that have opened 0-3 and find themselves starting their personal playoffs six weeks earlier than usual as they now must win out to guarantee a spot in the postseason. 

Our look back at Week 3 tells how some of those teams got there, plus hits on a few rivalry streaks now broken and more shaking up among the 8-player elite.  

Bay & Thumb

Flushing 26, Detroit Country Day 19 (OT)

Flushing’s season – and decade – got a massive boost with this upset of last season’s Division 4 runner-up. The Raiders are coming off consecutive 4-5 finishes and have only one winning season over the last six (going 9-3 in 2014). But they’re 2-1 this fall after jumping out to a 13-0 lead Friday, seeing it dissolve, but then rising again in overtime. Country Day (2-1) didn’t lose in the regular season last year and had lost only one regular-season game going back to the start of 2015.

Also noted:

Bay City Central 35, Flint Powers Catholic 28 – For the second straight week Central (2-1) pulled off a nail-biter in the Saginaw Valley League Red, handing Powers (2-1) its first loss.

Cass City 54, Brown City 30 – The Red Hawks (3-0) are halfway to a fourth straight playoff berth, and this time they’ve put up more than 50 points twice with 138 their most three games in since 2006.

Richmond 35, Croswell-Lexington 28 – This one definitely could’ve tripped up the Blue Devils (3-0) as they go for a third straight Blue Water Area Conference title; Croswell-Lexington (2-1) can stay in the mix with wins over the next two weeks again also-contenders Almont and Algonac.

Davison 40, Flint Carman-Ainsworth 13 – Davison (3-0) is rolling on offense again with a second 50-point game this season over a 2016 playoff team; Carman-Ainsworth has its work cut out after falling to 1-2. 

Greater Detroit

Clarkston 34, Bloomfield Hills 20

The Wolves are 3-0 against teams that went a combined 24-8 last season, with reigning Oakland Activities Association Blue champion Bloomfield Hills the most recent to fall. The teams traded scores most of the game and the Black Hawks (2-1) led early in the fourth quarter before Clarkston scored 21 unanswered points. Bloomfield Hills moved this season into the OAA Red, where Clarkston is the reigning co-champion. Click for more from the Oakland Press.

Also noted:

Detroit Denby 12, Detroit Central 6 – Denby (2-0) got off to a slow start with no Week 1 game, but has caught up quickly handing another 2016 playoff team Central (2-1) its first loss.

Livonia Stevenson 20, Livonia Churchill 9 – These neighbors have now split their last 10, with Stevenson (2-0) claiming the last two while handing Churchill (2-1) its first loss for the second straight season.

Riverview 34, Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central 7 – The Pirates (2-1) downed SMCC for the first time since 2011, in the process equaling their win total from last year and putting the Falcons (1-2) down two games in Huron League play.

New Boston Huron 31, Carleton Airport 30 – Sticking in the Huron, New Boston Huron is 3-0 for the first time since 1970, according to, after Austin Atherton’s late 36-yard field goal got the Chiefs past Airport (2-1).


Haslett 28, St. Johns 24

These teams are regulars in the chase after DeWitt in the Capital Area Activities Conference Red. Although this was a league opener, it would seem to indicate Haslett (2-1) is back as the top competition for the Panthers in the latter’s final season before moving into the CAAC Blue. The teams traded scores throughout the second and third quarters, but the Vikings held St. Johns (1-2) scoreless over the final 18 minutes. Both of the Redwings’ losses this fall are by four points or fewer. Click for more from the Lansing State Journal.

Also noted:

Belding 21, Hopkins 20 – The Black Knights (2-1) bounced back from a one-point Week 2 loss to Lake Odessa Lakewood to win a close one over Hopkins (1-2).

Holt 29, Jackson 27 – The Rams (1-2) didn’t let losses to Grandville and Hudsonville derail their season, edging Jackson (0-3) thanks to 265 yards and four touchdowns on 51 carries by Troy Jordan.

Portland 21, Williamston 14 – The Raiders (2-1) made it six wins in their last seven against the CAAC White rival Hornets (2-1), bouncing back this time from a Week 2 loss to Lansing Sexton.

Fowler 14, Bath 7 – A rare loss last week to Saranac could’ve knocked Fowler (2-1) off course, but the Eagles instead avenged last season’s loss to the Bees (2-1). 

Northern Lower Peninsula

Traverse City West 29, Traverse City Central 27

After five straight meetings between these neighbors decided by seven points or fewer, the latest didn’t disappoint. West looked to break away multiple times during the second half, but Central (2-1) continued to answer before the Titans finally put away the “Patriot Game” victory by securing an onside kick attempt in the final minute. The Trojans had won the last four matchups between the two – including by two points during the regular season and one in the playoffs in 2016. West is 3-0 for the first time since 2004. Click for more from the Traverse City Record-Eagle.

Also noted:

Petoskey 34, Cadillac 19 – Last season’s one-win finish is becoming a distant memory for Petoskey (2-1), which not only doubled its win total from 2016 in Week 3 but tied its highest scoring performance from all of last season in getting past Cadillac (1-2).

Lake City 28, McBain 8 – Lake City (3-0) has rumbled back into the mix after winning only two games last season and losing three straight to Highland Conference foe McBain (2-1).

Evart 15, Leroy Pine River 7 – The Wildcats (2-1) have ridden last season’s upswing into this fall, downing 2016 Division 6 semifinalist Pine River (0-3) for the first time since 2013.

Manistee 42, Ludington 28 – The Chippewas (1-2) got on the board by avenging last season’s loss to Ludington (2-1) and after losing their first two games this season by a combined 14 points. 

Southeast & Border

Ypsilanti Lincoln 26, Chelsea 14

A pair of 20-point losses to Chelsea contributed to Lincoln’s back-to-back 4-5 finishes the last two seasons. Getting one back couldn’t have come at a better time. The Railsplitters (1-2) fell to Pinckney by nine on opening night and one to Tecumseh a week ago, but now can enjoy some confidence picked up by handing the Bulldogs (2-1) their first regular-season loss since Week 7 in 2015. Chelsea had beaten Pinckney in Week 2 and still should figure into the Southeastern Conference White title chase after winning outright or sharing the championship the last two seasons. Click for more from the Ann Arbor News.

Also noted:

Salem 10, Brighton 7 – The Rocks (2-1) are one point this season from a perfect start as they seek their first winning season in 2012, while Brighton (1-2) now has two losses both by three points as they go for a third straight playoff berth.

Reading 52, Homer 38 – The Rangers (2-1) have gone from 3-6 last year to beating two of three reigning co-champions from the Big 8 Conference over the last two weeks, this time handing Homer (2-1) its first loss after an impressive start.

Hudson 48, Brooklyn Columbia Central 21 – The Tigers (3-0) handed Columbia Central (2-1) its first loss to move to 13-2 since the start of 2016.

Napoleon 17, Michigan Center 14 – The Pirates (2-1) are becoming strong favorites to add another Cascades Conference championship after downing the other reigning co-champ, Grass Lake, in Week 2, and edging another likely contender in the Cardinals (2-1) this time. 

Southwest Corridor

Battle Creek Harper Creek 22, Jackson Lumen Christi 21 (OT)

A two-point conversion in overtime gave Harper Creek its second straight win over Lumen Christi – the reigning Division 6 champion – and put the Beavers in nice position in the Interstate 8 Athletic Conference after sharing the league title with the Titans in 2016. Harper Creek came back from 14 points down and trailed by a score heading into the fourth quarter. The Beavers went for two after answering Lumen’s TD and extra point to begin overtime. Click for more from the Battle Creek Enquirer.

Also noted:

Watervliet 52, Maple City Glen Lake 26 – The Panthers (3-0) have yet to score fewer than 50 points, and the reigning Division 6 runner-up Lakers (1-2) hadn’t given up that many since 2014.

Stevensville Lakeshore 24, Portage Central 7 – Give the Lancers (3-0) the early upper hand on the Mustangs (2-1) as one of these two has won or shared the Southwestern Michigan Athletic Conference West title the last five seasons.

Battle Creek Central 32, Battle Creek Lakeview 13 – The Bearcats (1-2) downed their rival for the second time in three seasons, especially impressive because Central is seeking its first playoff season since 2008 and Lakeview (1-2) has made the postseason five straight.

Kalamazoo Loy Norrix 21, Kalamazoo Central 14 – The Knights (1-2) got their first win since opening night 2015 and first over rival Central (0-3) since 2014. 

Upper Peninsula

Gladstone 43, Negaunee 0

Gladstone is 3-0 for the first time since 2014, and the Braves also started 3-0 in 2009. But this opening surge has included outscoring their first three opponents by a combined 129-6 – and shutting out a pair of 2016 playoff teams in Gwinn and now the Miners. Gladstone had lost to Negaunee by 23 in 2016 and 24 in 2015. The Miners, meanwhile, face their toughest path forward since 2000 as they try to make the playoffs for a sixth straight season. Click for more from the Escanaba Daily Press.

Also noted:

Ishpeming Westwood 38, L’Anse 10 – The Patriots not only are 3-0 after winning two games last season, but they’ve outscored those first three opponents by a combined 98-22; the Purple Hornets (2-1) were the first to reach double digits.

Escanaba 21, Detroit Loyola 20 – The Eskymos (2-1) crossed the bridge and just edged the reigning Division 7 runner-up Bulldogs (0-3).

Fond du Lac, Wis. 49, Menominee 20 – The Maroons (2-1) had only one other regular-season loss (to DeWitt last season) since mid-2012, but Fond du Lac is 3-1 and made the quarterfinals of its Wisconsin division last season. 

Iron River West Iron County 35, Iron Mountain 3 – The Wykons (2-1) had lost by 26 and 27 to the rival Mountaineers (0-3) the last two seasons. 

West Michigan

East Grand Rapids 16, Lowell 14

East Grand Rapids got ahead by a pair of touchdowns but needed a late field goal by Mark Boeve to finish off what has to be considered its most impressive win this decade. The Pioneers handed the Red Arrows (2-1) their first regular-season defeat since opening night 2015 and first in this series since EGR’s undefeated run in 2010. East Grand Rapids is 3-0 for the second time in three seasons. Click for more from the Grand Rapids Press.

Also noted:

Muskegon Mona Shores 30, Rockford 24 (OT) – The Sailors (3-0) evened their recent series with the Rams (1-2) at 2-2 while continuing one of the most impressive starts in the state this fall.

Grand Rapids West Catholic 17, Zeeland West 6 – The Falcons (2-1) avenged last season’s loss to West (1-2) by holding the Dux to their fewest points since a 2014 Division 3 Semifinal defeat.

East Kentwood 24, Hudsonville 17 – The Falcons (3-0) opened the Ottawa-Kent Conference Red schedule with a third win over a 2016 playoff team while dropping Hudsonville to 1-2.

Holland 36, Hudsonville Unity Christian 30 (OT) – The Dutch are 3-0 for the first time since 2011 and after two straight 2-7 finishes; Unity (2-1) had won all five previous meetings since Holland joined the O-K Green.


Stephenson 42, Crystal Falls Forest Park 16

Another week, another massive 8-player result from the Upper Peninsula. Forest Park couldn’t celebrate for long breaking Powers North Central’s 27-game winning streak in Week 2, as Stephenson now can stake a claim as the team to chase in a loaded Western Eight Conference. The Eagles (3-0) are joined by Rapid River and Ontonagon among undefeated squads in the league that also includes the Trojans and Jets among others. This win avenged two losses to Forest Park last year, including the second in a playoff opener. Click for more from the Iron Mountain Daily News.

Also noted:

Camden-Frontier 46, Battle Creek St. Philip 14 – The Redskins (3-0) look good to continue rising in their second season of 8-player after beating power St. Philip (2-1) for the second straight time.

Brimley 26, Onaway 25 – The Bays are suddenly 3-0 after not having enough players to field a team in 2016 and going 0-9 in 2015; Onaway fell to 1-2.

Pickford 40, Engadine 22 – Engadine (2-1) has made the playoffs six straight seasons, but Pickford (3-0) now has two straight wins on the Eagles after losing to them last regular season but also beating them by two in a Regional Final.

Ontonagon 32, Powers North Central 30 – The Gladiators (3-0) handed reigning MHSAA champion North Central (1-2) its second straight loss. 

PHOTO: A Clarkston ball carrier dives for the end zone during Friday's win over Bloomfield Hills. (Click for more from

Ubly Offense, Kicker Pile Up Record Book Listings During Championship Run

By Geoff Kimmerly senior editor

April 12, 2024

Ubly finished a combined 27-1 over the last two seasons, following up a Division 8 runner-up run in 2022 with its first MHSAA Finals championship this past November. And the Bearcats stacked plenty of record book performances along the way.

Individually, senior Brett Mueller made the single-season extra point list again this past season with 76 in 81 tries, and he set the MHSAA career record with 220 extra points over 232 attempts, 40 games and three seasons. He has signed with Saginaw Valley State.

As a team, Ubly was added to the record book 13 times for achievements over the last two years, most notably in the rushing game. The Bearcats topped 5,200 total yards both seasons, and also made the rush yardage list twice including with a sixth-best 5,148 in 2022. Their 90 touchdowns in 2022 rank seventh all-time, and their 85 this past fall tied for 13th, and they tied the record with 10 rushing touchdowns in a 2022 win over Reese and set another record with 84 rushing touchdowns total that season.

See below for more recent record book additions in 11-player football, and click the heading to see the record book in full:

11-Player Football

Dundee’s Ben Miller has a pair of basketball record book entries, and he’s also been added in football for scoring seven touchdowns in his team’s 72-36 win over Erie Mason on Oct. 20, 2017. A senior that season, he ran for five scores and caught two touchdowns passes.

Nearly four decades later, Howard City Tri County’s Mike Wagoner has reached the record book for his work on defense in 1985. A junior that season, Wagoner returned three interceptions for touchdowns – 65, 55 and 35 yards – which would have been second on the list at the time and remains tied for third-most for one season.

Jaxon Lippert tops the list of 21 who have returned kickoffs 99 yards. Lippert, now a senior at Walled Lake Western, joined the list against Davison during his junior season.

A handful of records from Warren De La Salle Collegiate’s recent run of Ford Field teams and also one from decades ago were added. Jake Badalamenti was added three times for kickoff returns between 96-99 yards, one as a junior in 2016 and two as a senior the following fall, and Marty Wyzlic was added for his 95-yarder in 1976. Mason Muragin is the new leader for tackles for loss in a career with 71 over three seasons, and he also was added to the single-season list with 31 as a junior in 2021, as was Will Beasley for 38 as a junior in 2020. Wayne Wright was added for his 16 sacks over nine games as a senior in 1984, and Josh Cox was added for his 100-yard interception return as a senior in 2012. Muragin plays at Illinois, Beesley plays at Princeton, Cox played at Central Michigan, and Badalamenti played baseball at Wayne State.

Pinckney junior Nolan Carruthers caught 16 passes during a 13-7 loss to Jackson on Sept. 15, good to tie for ninth-most in one game and breaking the Livingston County record of 14 by Hartland’s Greg Matthyssen in 2007 – a listing that also was added.

Ethan Wissner did some major lifting, or rather carrying, during Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port Laker’s 28-14 District Final win over Montrose in 2022. The then-senior ran 42 times to make the record book, for 289 yards and three touchdowns. He’s continuing at Siena Heights.

Senior quarterback Andrew Schuster and junior receiver DeShaun Lanier formed a game-changing pass-catch combo this past season for Clinton Township Chippewa Valley, with Schuster finishing his career with nine record book listings and Lanier totaling six with a season to play. Schuster most notably was added for 212 completions on 301 attempts for 2,766 yards and 28 touchdowns this season, and 321 completions and 4,199 career yards over two years and 22 games. Lanier was added in part for 73 receptions for 1,132 yards and 15 TDs this fall. Junior kicker Juliano Haddad also earned impressive mentions with 10 field goals and 50 extra points – and he’ll carry a streak of 35 straight extra points into next fall. Schuster has committed to Grand Valley State.

Fulton’s Evan Barton has been added to the single-game touchdowns list after catching four scoring passes Sept. 8, 2017, against Potterville. He was a senior that season.

Saginaw Heritage’s Braylon Isom completed his career this past fall as arguably the most accomplished receiver in MHSAA history. His name is listed in the record book eight times, with career records of 3,837 receiving yards and 52 touchdowns over 34 games and four seasons, and with a single-season record 26 touchdowns this past fall over 12 games. His 91 career receptions rank fifth, and he’s also listed for 82 catches and 1,617 yards (seventh-most) as a senior and 1,428 yards and 18 touchdowns as a junior. He will continue at Miami (Ohio).

Evart’s 24-8 run over the last three seasons has been its most successful of the MHSAA playoff era, and senior quarterback Preston Wallace has played an enormous part. He finished his 33-game career in the fall – he came up for one game as a freshman – on record book lists twice for single-season passing yards and touchdowns and on career lists for 662 attempts, 421 completions, 6,955 yards and 88 passing touchdowns over those 32 games and three seasons. The yardage ranks 15th all-time, and the touchdowns are tied for sixth-most for one career.  

The 2005 Midland Bullock Creek team was added for scoring 547 points over 12 games. The Lancers finished 11-1, their only loss in a Division 5 Regional Final.

PHOTO Ubly's Seth Maurer (30) carries the ball during the Division 8 championship win over Ottawa Lake Whiteford in November.