Conference Championship Decided By Upsets

By Mark Blentlinger

To end the season, a win would leave Schoolcraft with a perfect 9-0 record and the SAC Lakeshore Championship. It wasn’t to be: Schoolcraft fell to 8-1 with a crushing defeat at the hands of Kalamazoo United’s Titans.

A win by the Titans and the Constantine Falcons created a three-way tie among the three teams. Both the Falcons and Titans were able to put another win in their column in their last game of the regular season.

The contest started out like a usual game, a winning one, by the Schoolcraft Eagles. The first three possessions turned into points, such as the 20-yard pass from Alex Thole to Parker Lawerence. The extra point failed, but the Eagles were quickly up 6-0. The next score was another pass from Thole to Kobe Clark for 15 yards to the end zone. Within the first five minutes the Eagles were able to hit pay-dirt for the third time with an 80-yard pass from Thole to Lawerence.

It was the second quarter before the Titans were able to put points on the scoreboard, reading 20-7, where the score stayed until after halftime.

In the third quarter, the Eagles struck first with another pass from Thole to Jimmy Downs. This put the Eagles up 27-7. However, the Titans knew if they wanted to make the post season they were going to have to beat the Eagles. The coaches and players put their noses to the grindstone and started to march downfield. The Titan’s second score came from Kyle Hoogenboom, after receiving a 43-yard pass from Aiden Allen, 27-14. Next up was Adam Wheaton, who took a handoff 32 yards into the Eagle end zone, 27-21. The Eagles were still up going into the fourth quarter. The Titan’s Allen found fellow teammate Peter Dragan open and hit him with a 25-yard pass that tied the game at 27 until the extra point, which put the Titans up 28-27.

The Titans wanted to make sure that the Eagles were going to need more than a field goal to win the game, so Adam Wheaton took it to the house from 47 yards out to bring the scoreboard to Eagles 27, Visitors 35. With one last valiant attempt and a few seconds left on the clock, the Eagles were able to bring everyone at Roy Davis field on to their feet as Thole threw to Clark who lateraled to Jimmy Downs. He ran the Eagle sideline, headed for the goal, but was forced out of bounds at the Titans eight-yard line as the game clock expired. Titans pulled out the upset and put themselves into the post season, as the Eagles went to 8-1, headed into the playoffs.

The Eagles were to face off against Hartford at Roy Davis field, on Nov. 1, at 7 p.m., for the first round of the MHSSA playoffs and the road to Ford Field.

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