www.mybaycity.com November 10, 2008
Sports Article 3273

Midland Upends Westerns District Title Hopes 24-14

Western held scoreless in the second half

November 10, 2008
By: John Keuvelaar

With a stadium literally busting at the seams with fans that they had to put up snow fences just to accommodate everyone who wanted to the this rematch, the fans saw a dandy. High quality play from outstanding athletes made this a memorable game. And while there can only be one winner, Western certainly wasn't a loser in their final game the 2008 season.

Scott Lafever (51) and Alex Barker (66) provide good protection for QB Andrew Maxwell as Hunter Mutko (50) prepares to rush.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Western started the game off with a bang. On their second play from scrimmage, quarterback Matt Grew made his return presence known when he faked a hand off to Justin Gwizdala then showed some quick moves has he juked his way for a 82 yard touchdown putting the Warriors on top 7-0 before the game was even a minute old.

Michael Albrecht (6) ran for 99 yards on the night as Casey Foley (34) prepares to take him on.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Sam Penkala (62) drags Andrew Maxwell down from the shirt tails.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

On the following kick off, Drew Moulton returned the ball to midfield getting the Chemics offense on track. From there is was straight forward football as the Chemics marched the ball down field before Mike Albrecht punched it in from the 3 tying the score.

Lucas Kozuch readies to lower the boom.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Moments later the Chemics were back in business as Drew Moulton intercepted a pass. But the Warrior defense stiffened, aided by a couple of penalties, and held Midland to a 42 yard Connor Gagnon field goal.

Corey Arnold (41) catches Michael Albrecht (6) from behind.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Dan Alba (9) tries to avoid the stiff arm from Albrecht.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

After both teams exchanged possessions, Matt Drew broke loose again for Western and zig zagged 43 yards down the right sideline for another Western touchdown making it 14-10 with a minute to go in the first quarter.

It was a head banging night.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

On the kickoff, Western caught Midland by surprise with an onside kick that the Warriors recovered on the Chemics 36 yard line. When they couldn't move the ball, Midland took over on downs.

It was a battle in the trenches all night as shown by Western's Hunter Mutko (50) as he tries to power by Midland's Alex Barker (66).
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

That's placing it in the ole bread basket.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

The rest of the half was a a sign of things to come in the second half. Midland, working out of the shotgun went to short quick passes to move the ball and avoid a strong Western rush. While this was effective in moving the ball, penalties and a strong wind kept them from scoring anymore as they missed to field goal attempts that were clearly affected by the strong crossing wind. Meanwhile, the Chemics defense shut down any meaningful rushing game bottling up Justin Gwizdala and attempting to contain Grew.

Top notch play on the field was also given by both bands as these Chemic musicians dance it up.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

The second half saw a dominating defensive performance by Midland. On Western's first possession, Midland recovered a fumble at the 10. On the following play, Albrecht raced for the corner of the end zone making it 17-14 early in the third quarter.

Matt Grew (10) unleashes a pass as a result of great protection from lineman Sam Majeske (57) and Billy Salois (56).
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

While the Midland defense was keeping Western out of the end zone, Michael Albrecht was powering the Chemics offense. While rushing for 99 yards on the night, he also did damage on the receiving end. After making a spectacular catch while on his back at the 5 yard line, three plays later he fought and willed his way into the end zone for the final touchdown making it 24-14.

Wesley LaCourt puts on the pressure to Matt Grew (10).
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Matt Grew powered the Western offense with 202 yards rushing on 20 carries. But when you realize that 2 of the carries totaled 125 yards, the other 77 were tough yards to get. He also was only 4-20 in passing for a total of 38 yards. Andrew Maxwell helped lead the Chemics with 16 for 28 passing totaling 170 yards. Midland next plays for the Regional title at home against Davison.

"We got the beat."
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

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