Western Falls to Chemics 34-16 In Non-League Play
September 13, 2009
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By: John Keuvelaar
Western and Midland entered the contest sitting atop the Saginaw Valley Conference with identical 2-0 records. While the merging of Flint Northern and Central made this a non-conference game, you couldn't convince either of the teams that the winner would get the upper hand in the conference title chase. In the end, it was Western's inability to stop the Chemic's rushing attack or generate one of their own that resulted in a 34-16 loss to Midland .
After neither team got anything going in their first possessions, Midland struck quickly on their second possession. Starting on their own 34 yard line, Charles Leffingwell took the ball up the middle and scampered 66 yards for a touchdown. Following a successful PAT, the Chemics were on top 7-0.
Western went to the air to get their game going. Quarterback Austin Pichiotino hit Caleb Boileau for a 44 yard reception giving the Warriors the ball on Midland's 36 yard line. Then Pichiotino found Tyler Ellis on a key fourth down pass good for 27 yards and a first down on the Midland's seven. But Western was unable to hit paydirt settling for a Caleb Boileau 24 yard field goal and a 7-3 score.
Midland , who enjoyed good field position all night started from their own 43. Thanks to a 21 yard run by Leffingwell, they were knocking on the door again at the Western 31. But Kyle Lee came up with the big play for Western intercepting the pass at the 10 yard line and returned it to the 19. After being unable to move the ball, Midland took the punt and returned it into Western territory. Moments later, Mathew Alcott broke loose for a 33 yard touchdown run and a 14-3 lead.
Following a 4 yard kick return, Western started from their own 14. Pichiotino took the ball around end and cutting across the field, gave Western some breathing room by running to their own 36. But the Warriors could not move the ball any further and were forced to punt. Midland then seized control of the game when Ty Whittlesey blocked the punt giving the Chemics great field position on the Western 33. Wasting little time, quarterback Alex Rapanos passed the Chemics to the 17 and then took it in from the 16 for a touchdown and a 21-3 halftime lead.
Western and Midland charge head on. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Midland's Alex Rapanos eludes the diving Caden Nowak. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Caleb Boileau catches a long pass deep in Midland territory. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Western fans cheer on their team. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Kyle Lee intercepts a pass meant for Alex Albrecht. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
The third quarter was all Midland . Taking the opening kickoff, the Chemics mixed run and pass to eat almost nine minutes off the game clock before Rapanos finished off the drive with a one yard sneak making it 28-3.
Another punt team miscue lead to Midland's next score. After holding the Warriors to no gain and forcing a punt, the snap sailed over the punter's head giving the Chemics a first down on the Western 3. Leffingwell then punched it in from the one and Midland was firmly in control 34-3 late in the third quarter.
But the young Western team has a lot of pride. Austin Pichiotino got things going with a nice 15 yard run to their 37. Then he went to the air. First, Pichiotino hit Boileau for 12 yards bringing the Warriors to midfield. Then Pichiotino found Jason Pressler for a 32 yard pass to the Midland 17. After finding Boileau at the 9, Pichiotino hit Pressler for a 7 yard touchdown and narrowing the margin to 34-9.
On Western's next possession, Pichiotino passed them out to the 44. From their, he hit Boileau at the Midland 46 and the senior receiver ran it down to the 28. Pressler then received the ball at the 15 where moments later, Pichiotino hit Kyle Lee for a touchdown and a final score of 34-19 Midland .
Midland dominated the ground attack racking up 272 yards with Charles Leffingwell gaining 175 yards on 18 carries. In contrast the Chemics held Western to 53 yards on 35 carries.
Western did well in the air as sophomore QB Austin Pichiotino was 15-25 for 230 yards. The receiving corps was lead by Caleb Boileau who had 7 catches for 128 yards. Jason Pressler added 58 yards on 4 receptions and Tyler Ellis had 3 receptions for 53 yards.
Midland's Ty Whittlesey leaps to block Western's Matt Gurnee's punt. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Western's Caden Nowak, Jesse Metz and David Kolanek swarm in on the Chemic ball carrier.. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Western students cheer on their team during the second half of the game. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Austin Pichiotino stiff arms Taylor Stockton to gain more yards. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Austin Pichiotino completes this pass to Caleb Boileau. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Kyle Lee hauls in the pass under heavy pressure. (MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)
Sports Article 4190
John Keuvelaar is a college student at Midwest Photography Workshops and Delta College.
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