Eddies’ title run ends in semis

Published 6:14 pm Sunday, November 21, 2010

Edwardsburg’s Jack Harrison breaks up a pass Saturday afternoon in the Division 4 semifinals at Vicksburg. The Eddies were defeated by Grand Rapids CC 46-31. (Daily Star Photo/AMELIO RODRIGUEZ)

Edwardsburg’s Jack Harrison breaks up a pass Saturday afternoon in the Division 4 semifinals at Vicksburg. The Eddies were defeated by Grand Rapids CC 46-31. (Daily Star Photo/AMELIO RODRIGUEZ)

VICKSBURG — The run for a Division 4 state championship ended one game away from Ford Field in Detroit for the Edwardsburg Eddies Saturday afternoon.

Edwardsburg ran into a team in Grand Rapids Catholic Central that could defense the Wing-T and also play extremely well on the other side of the football.

The result was a 46-31 Catholic Central victory over the Eddies in a game that wasn’t as close as the final score indicates.

Played before a full house at Vicksburg High School Saturday afternoon, the Cougars (11-2) rolled to a 46-7 lead on Edwardsburg (11-2) before the Eddies scored 24 points in the game’s final three-plus minutes.

“We came up against a team that knew how to defend the T,” Edwardsburg football coach Kevin Bartz said. “I thought (Catholic Central) had some great defensive schemes. We had trouble finding places where we could pick them apart. We didn’t have the steady offense that we normally have.”

The Eddies also had a hard time stopping the Cougars’ offense, that finished with 332 yards in total yards. Grand Rapids CC was also able to take advantage of three Edwardsburg turnovers.

“It was a huge factor,” Bartz said. “We haven’t had many turnovers or penalties throughout the tournament.”

Cougar quarterback Miles Morrissey got Grand Rapids CC on the scoreboard first with a 10-yard run after forcing Edwardsburg to punt on its first possession of the game.

The Eddies were able to knot the score at 7-7 before the end of the first quarter as Austin Stinnett capped a drive with a one-yard run.

Grand Rapids broke the game open in the second quarter with a pair of touchdowns, but the Eddies were still within striking distance at the half, 22-7.

But unlike its previous game against Lansing Sexton, Edwardsburg was unable to take the second half kickoff and march down the field to score. It would be a key in deciding the outcome of the contest.

The Eddies got to the Cougars’ 30-yard line before their drive stalled and Grand Rapids CC went 71 yards in eight plays to open up a 29-7 lead when Kevin Vicari scored on a two-yard run.

Things unraveled for the Eddies in final quarter as the lead reached 46-7 on touchdown runs of 22 yards by Bronson Hill, 19 yards by Zach Forbes and a 20-yard Andre Cargill field goal.

Not ones to quit, the Eddies scored three times in the final three minutes of the game to make the score look a bit more respectable.

Kyle Dale hauled in a 36-yard touchdown pass from Ethan Zimmerman, while Adam Kendall scored on the conversion run. Stinnett added a six-yard touchdown run with Zimmerman getting the 2-point conversion and Dale catching a five-yard pass from Zimmerman with Kendall scoring on the conversion run.

“We’re not going to quit no matter what,” Bartz said. “We wanted to keep coming at them. It wasn’t our best game, but they’re definitely the best football team we’ve played all year.”

Edwardsburg rushed for 304 yards and threw for another 104 as Zimmerman was 6-of-8 with the two touchdowns. Kendall led the ground attack with 94 yards on 12 carries and Stinnett finished with 88 yards on 11 totes.

Morrissey was 7-of-10 for 130 yards and a touchdown, while Deven Scott-Stith also threw for a touchdown. Hill finished with 56 yards on 10 carries and Vicari 49 yards on 11 carries.

Catholic Central returns to the state finals for the first time since 2005. It will face Williamston (12-1), which was a 33-13 winner over Detroit Crockett on Saturday.

Edwardsburg 7 0 0 24 – 31

Grand Rapids CC 7 15 7 17 – 46

GR – Miles Morrissey 10 run (Andre Cargill kick)

E – Austin Stinnett 1 run (Jeff Roberson kick)

GR – Bronson Hill 67 pass from Deven Scott-Stith (Kevin Vicari run)

GR – John Haley 33 pass from Morrissey (Cargill kick)

GR – Vicari 2 run (Cargill kick)

GR – Cargill 20 field goal

GR – Hill 22 run (Cargill kick)

GR – Zach Forbes 19 run (Cargill kick)

E – Kyle Dale 36 pass from Ethan Zimmerman (Adam Kendall run)

E – Stinnett 6 run (Zimmerman run)

E – Dale 5 pass from Zimmerman (Kendall run)