Saturday, November 7, 2015

MLS Football vs. Fowler (Playoff edition)

On Friday, November 6, Michigan Lutheran Seminary played host to the Eagles of Fowler for round two of the playoffs.  The winner would go home with the trophy as District Champs.  As it turned out, the trophy stayed home for the District Champs!

I had little idea how good Fowler might be.  They had compiled a 7-3 record, and their three losses came against playoff teams.  I figured that they would be pretty good, and they were very well disciplined.  In fact, both teams played disciplined games as there were precious few penalties on either side.  I'm glad the refs were not getting paid by commission, because they would have come out pretty poor.  On the other hand, their little yellow flags will not need to go to the laundry this week.

After both sides exchanged possessions a few times, Fowler punted and it was received by Casey Williams.  Casey shifted and shimmied through all kinds of people.  I think Dan Gensmer had the best chance to tackle him.  Dan wisely let him go and Casey scored the first points of the game.  We missed the PAT, so MLS went up 6-0.

Later in the 1st quarter, MLS had the ball somewhere around the Eagles 35 yard line (M-Live said 39).  Andrew went in motion from left to right.  Cade took the snap and pitched it to Andrew.  Andrew rolled out and threw a beauty to Hunter Miller for another TD.  I don't know how many receptions Hunter had all season, but the playoffs sure agree with him.  Hunter as three TD's in the past two weeks!  So cool to see others make plays!

Fowler was driving as we were getting close to half time.  The Cardinal defense was playing very well.  Fowler's offense seemed to be a three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust kind of offense.  In the first quarter, that was only one or two yards and a cloud of dust.  By the end of the 2nd quarter, it was more like five yards, as MLS seemed to be wearing down.  Fowler's offense also seems to be the kind of offense which holds the ball for a long time on their drives.  When you have the lead, that works brilliantly.  When you are down 14-0, that could mean trouble.  MLS held them out of the end zone and went into the locker room up 14-0.

The second half saw more of the same.  Fowler hoped to string together long, time-consuming drives, but the MLS defense got some rest at half time and was stingy again.  Fowler also had to resort to more passing than they were used to.  They had some success there, driving the field in the 4th quarter to score with 4:30-something left to play.

Backing up to the 3rd quarter, MLS had the ball in Eagle territory, needing to pick up seven yards on 4th down.  Andrew received the pass and turned up field, hoping just to get the needed yardage.  But then he broke a tackle.  And then another.  And then another and cut against the grain.  Once he got to the outside, it was off to the races.  A 2-point conversion later and MLS had a 22-0 lead.  After Fowler's TD in the 4th quarter, MLS never let them get the ball back.  MLS completed the game with a 22-7 win and a District Championship.

Articles from M-Live can be found here and another one here.  You can also check out Friday Night Lights here.  MLS is featured at the 2:40 mark.  Friday Night Light also features the Concert Choir members on the football teams singing part of the national anthem at the end of the clip.  We also saw Andrew getting interviewed after the game by FOX Sports, but I can't find that anywhere right now.

The photos below are NOT from the game, as that is prohibited by MHSAA rules.  So, if you want to see photos, you have to come to my house.
District Champs 2015!!!
This interview is out there somewhere.  When I find it, I will post the link to it.
Mom deserves a hug.
The senior MLS Cardinals walk the field after their final home game.  Thankfully, it was a pretty happy walk.
District Championships can wear a person out!