Greetings from Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. I'm visiting the sister-in law's family for Thanksgiving but will be back at Ford Field by 4:30 pm on Friday to witness the Division VI Final. Sorry it took me so long to get this thing posted. It's tough cramming a weeks worth of work into three days in the nine to five gig.
The Wildcats of Montague are the defending Division VI state champs and are in the midst of a 20 game winning streak. Montague is an impressive 13-0 while the Falcons have won 12 straight after losing the season opener on the last play of the game against Detroit Crockett. Montague is giving up just under 13 points per game while scoring at a 44 point clip. The Wildcats closest game was against 7-3 Fremont 13-0. They also had a close game with league foe Ravenna 41-27. Ravenna finished the season an impressive 10-3.
Montague boast an impressive offense that has put a load of points on the board in virtually every game. Senior Cody Kater leads the Wildcats offensively. The 6'3" 195 pounder has thrown for over 2,500 yards and has thrown 33 touchdowns against only 7 intercpetions. Kater is also a threat running the ball and has scored 13 touchdowns. The Wildcats have an impressive receiving corp led by 6'3" senior Matt DeJong. DeJong has 49 receptions and 17 touchdowns. Anthony Root has also had an outstanding year catching the ball with 40 receptions and 7 touchdowns. Senior running back Drew Panida has rushed for over 800 yards and has scored 15 touchdowns.
Defensively, the Wildcats have been stingy this season, giving up only 160 points in 13 games thus far. Linebacker Drew Panida leads the Wildcats in tackles with 83 total while Safety Jake Schmidt has recorded 57 tackles. Other standouts on defense for the Wildcats are linebacker Jesus Aguilar and defensive back RC Twining.
Normally SMCC has an advantage in the special teams play but kicker Matt DeJong has recorded 47 touchbacks on kickoffs this season and may prevent the Falcon kick returners from making a difference in the championship game.
This is a very interesting game. It is a difference of styles and SMCC's defense will be under the gun against the Wildcat spread attack. This game could get out of hand if the Falcons have difficulty controlling the clock. I said early in the preseason that the Crockett game would prepare the Falcons for a long playoff run and here is where that game will pay dividends. The small defensive backs of SMCC may have problems with the Wildcats's receivers but are quick enough to possibly neutralize them.
I think this game could possibly go either way but I have to put my money on the defending champs. SMCC just doesn't see a quarterback like this in the Huron League. I look for Montague to win a hard fought game that is much closer than many expect. Wildcats win 31-29.