FLINT – Grand Blanc could possibly be a really harmful staff when the highschool soccer playoffs start in two weeks.
In contrast to previous a number of seasons, when the Bobcats limped into the postseason after getting off to scorching begins, Grand Blanc will probably be stuffed with confidence coming into the playoffs no matter what occurs within the common season finale vs. Saline.
The Bobcats have received 4 of their 5 video games this season and are driving a three-game profitable streak after beating Powers Catholic 56-14 Friday night time at Atwood Stadium.
That they had misplaced to the Chargers the previous two seasons and one in every of their different victims through the profitable streak was perennial Saginaw Valley South energy Lapeer, which had received 4 straight vs. Grand Blanc.
On high of all that, they performed effectively towards defending Division 1 state champion Davison after falling behind 18-0. The Cardinals outscored Grand Blanc 28-21 after leaping to the early lead in a 46-21 lead.
“We’ve acquired undefeated Saline in entrance of us,” mentioned coach Clint Alexander. “By no means beat them. In order that’s a giant step for us. We talked about tonight is a giant step. Hadn’t overwhelmed Powers but. Hadn’t overwhelmed Lapeer but. We’re making an attempt to beat Davison. We’ll have all we will deal with towards Saline.
“Early within the pregame, I may inform they had been performing completely different as a result of it’s private. They know all of them, that doggone social media. We missed some execution stuff on protection early as a result of I feel we had been making an attempt so laborious to make performs. If you attempt laborious to make performs, you don’t.
“We acquired them settled down and mentioned ‘Guys, simply play. Do your job and play.’ As soon as they did that, I believed they had been nice.”
This season has been completely different for the Bobcats and it has nothing to do with COVID-19 wiping out the primary three video games of the common season.
Up to now 5 seasons, the Bobcats have began with a mixed report of 21-0 solely to complete 5-19.
That’s not precisely the best way a staff desires to enter the postseason.
However this 12 months, Grand Blanc appears to be peaking on the excellent time after beating a Powers staff that has been hit laborious by accidents however can also be coming off a visit to the Division 4 state semifinals final 12 months.
“I’m actually pleased with us,” mentioned senior quarterback Ty Brotebeck. “Our future is wanting brilliant. We got here right here able to go. Our guys, our entrance 5, they performed excellent. They created the holes we wanted and off to the races.
“At present, it was undoubtedly a bit little bit of revenge. We’re a rival college. They stay just about proper subsequent to us and a few their coaches educate at our highschool. It was a bit little bit of revenge tonight.”
With apologies to Davison, Grand Blanc may need extra offensive weapons than any staff within the Flint space as a dozen gamers picked up yardage for the Bobcats.
Seven gamers scored for Grand Blanc, who’re averaging 47 factors per recreation.
Elijah Jackson-Anderson had a pair of landing runs, together with one which lined 83 yards; Jaylen Johnson ran for one TD and caught a cross for one more; Dennis Underwood, Jonah Meleski and Gerren Jarbeau all ran for TDs; and Dylan Hertzberg kicked a 27-yard subject objective along with 4 PATs.
“We like to play on turf,” Alexander mentioned. “We’ve acquired some quick youngsters so it’s all the time an awesome venue. We like to play right here. We attempt to be fairly balanced. I feel within the league we had been sixth one thing working and throwing. We attempt to keep balanced and it makes it laborious to defend us.
“It’s thrilling. We’ve been working laborious. We don’t recruit youngsters. We develop youngsters. it’s a giant distinction as a result of now we’ve acquired a bunch of them.”
Maybe the most important play aside from Jackson-Anderson’s long term was Johnson’s TD reception.
Brotebeck lateralled the ball to Nathan Lynch within the flats and Lynch threw an ideal strike to a wide-open Johnson streaking down the left sideline.
The Bobcats put that play on this week particularly for Lynch.
“He’s a former Holy Household child so … that is his greatest recreation,” Alexander mentioned. “He was our captain tonight. We put this in and thought we’d reap the benefits of his left hand. He’s a lefty. Nice throw, nice catch.”
Imagine it or not, Grand Blanc trailed 14-13 after one quarter because of a pair of landing runs by Powers’ senior Donavan Franklin that lined 61 and 79 yards. However Grand Blanc put up 20 factors within the second quarter and 16 within the third to make it 49-14 and put the working clock into play.
Franklin rushed for 254 yards within the first half alone earlier than ending with 256 on 17 carries after leaving the sport with leg cramps. The 256 yards had been 100 greater than his earlier profession excessive.
“He’s a troublesome runner, powerful competitor,” mentioned Powers coach Jerry Todd, whose staff fell to 1-4. “He doesn’t come off the sector. Down there towards the top his leg was bothering him and he nonetheless didn’t wish to come out.
“They’re a very good soccer staff. We’re beat up fairly good. We’ve had the harm bug this 12 months. However we will’t make excuses. We’ve acquired to get higher. We’ve had some guys getting reps at completely different positions. We began with 45 and I feel there have been 30 after we took the sector and we in all probability misplaced just a few extra.”
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