One weekend, eight champions

Published 9:12 am Monday, November 29, 2004

By Staff
The high school football season ended this weekend with the crowning of eight state champions, one in each of the Michigan High School Athletic Association's divisions.
All the games were played at the Pontiac Silverdome.
The championship games for Divisions 2, 4, 6 and 8 were played on Friday, and the finals for Divisions 1, 3, 5 and 7 were held on Saturday.
Division 1
Sterling Heights Stevenson……..6
Sterling Heights hung with Rockford in a scoreless first quarter, but couldn't keep up the rest of the way. Rockford scored 28 straight points before Sterling Heights got on the board, 14 in each of the second and third quarters. Rockford racked up 407 yards of offense and converted 9-of-13 third downs.
Division 2
Orchard Lake St. Mary's……7
In a game that started out slow, 7-6 at halftime, Muskegon exploded for 22 third quarter points to take control of the game and the championship. St. Mary's was up by a point a halftime, but gave up 25 second half points in the loss. Muskegon held St. Mary's to 56 yards total offense. Muskegon's Jason Ruud carried the ball 17 times in the game for 124 yards.
Divisoin 3
St. Johns……..17
Lowell grabbed a 17-7 lead early in the second quarter before St. Johns came back to tie the score at halftime. Lowell's defense shutout St. Johns in the second half, and its offense scored three more touchdowns.
Lowell had a pair of 100-yard rushers in the game. Keith Nichol had141 yards on 22 carries, while Ryan Esbaugh gained 121 yards on 22 carries.
Divison 4
Muskegon Orchard View…..31
DeWitt scored first, but Muskegon reeled off 28 unanswered points. DeWitt scored one more time with 4:44 remaining in the game, but it was too little, too late.
Despite the big win, the two teams were close in total yards, with DeWitt gaining 265 and Muskegon 274.
Division 5
Jackson Lumen Christi…..13
Midland Bullock Creek……..0
In the lowest scoring of the championship games, and the lone shutout, offense was few and far between. Jackson scored with 2:50 remaining before halftime and again with 7:14 remaining in the fourth quarter. Midland gained just 107 yards total in the game. At 11-3, Jackson finished the season with the most losses of any champion.
Division 6
Suttons Bay……13
For the first quarter and a half, Constantine and Suttons Bay traded blows. Constantine scored first, but Suttons Bay answered less than a minute later in the first quarter. The Falcons scored again in the second, and again Suttons Bay did the same to pull to within 14-13. Constantine scored three straight touchdowns, one an 89-yard run, to claim the title.
The Falcons ran the ball 75 times for 549 yards. They finished the game with 564 total yards. Suttons Bay gained 164 yards, but 72 came on a second-quarter touchdown pass.
Constantine's pair of brothers, Jim and Mike Schragg, were virtually unstoppable on the ground. Jim gained 307 yards rushing, a state finals record, on 26 carries, while Mike rushed for 134 yards on 26 carries.
Division 7
Detroit St. Martin dePorres…….7
Unionville scored the game-winning touchdown with 5:29 remaining in the third quarter, then relied on its defense to keep dePorres off the board. dePorres scored first on a 36-yard fumble return, but Unionville scored touchdowns in the second and third quarters. At 9-5, dePorres had the most losses of any team in the state finals. In the defensive struggle, each team failed to gain more than 200 yards of total offense. Unionville-Sebewaing held the advantage 191-169.
Division 8
Climax Scotts……………….42
Crystal Falls Forest Park……8
Climax-Scotts ran for five touchdowns to win by the biggest margin of victory of the eight state final games. The team had scoring runs of 56, 41 and 24 yards, but gained just 271 yards of total offense.
Forest Park's sole score and two-point conversion came with 7:01 remaining in the second quarter. Forest Park hurt themselves with turnovers, losing four of its five fumbles, and throwing one interception.