Muskegon CC runs past Whiteford in the second half, wins another Division 8 title, 35-6
Detroit — State Championships are becoming routine at Muskegon Catholic Central since Steve Czerwon took over in 2013.
Since returning to his alma mater, a school where he played quarterback, his Crusaders have won four consecutive Division 8 titles.
C.C.’s fourth came on Friday as the Crusaders defeated Ottawa Lake Whiteford, 35-6, at Ford Field.
“That was a darn good team we played against. They gave us a lot of trouble, especially in the first quarter. But we felt good at halftime. We knew we could move the ball the second half, and there were plays to be made,” Czerwon said.
“It was a great win for C.C.”
C.C. (14-0) got off to a sluggish start then with 9:05 left in the second quarter, Logan Helton and the Crusader rushing attack capped off an eight play, 85-yard drive with a 5-yard touchdown run for a 7-0 lead.
Whiteford was able to move the ball against a defense that gave up 350 total yards, but fourth down were a problem. The Bobcats went 0-for-5 on fourth down including two trips into the red zone. All five failed attempts came in C.C. territory.
“It’s who we are,” Whiteford coach Jason Mensing said. “We are a fourth down team, and we will continue to be one. My strategy won’t change, even if I could do it over again.”
The Bobcats’ touchdown came on a quarterback keeper as Tommy Eitniear slipped a defender at the line of scrimmage and took off for an 81-yard touchdown. The try for two points failed.
Helton scored his second rushing touchdown, from 26 yards out, after an efficient four-play drive. Whiteford’s tried an onside kick but was unsuccessful giving C.C. good field position.
C.C.’s seniors paved the way in the win but it was a freshman that finished the charge in the second half.
Cameron Martinez had 15 carries for 154 yards and a touchdown, and was 4-for-9 passing for 61 yards.
“Any time you have a running quarterback, you force the defense to defend 11 guys instead of 10,” Czerwon said of using Martinez over senior Trenten Bordeaux. “Cam has the ability to make plays because he doesn’t play like a freshman. He just gives us an extra dynamic on offense.”
Martinez scored on a 5-yard touchdown run, and completed a pop-pass to LaTommy Scott for a 25-yard touchdown to increase the lead to 28-6. Walker Christoffersen sealed the game with an 8-yard touchdown run with 1:04 to play.
Despite graduating 14 seniors, Czerwon credits his team’s impressive run to how it develops its younger players, which will ensure success for years to come.
“We don’t have a junior varsity program so we like to give reps to our younger guys throughout the year, and in practice,” Czerwon said. “Our guys get to go up against great in school talent, and a lot gets accomplished when you have varsity coaches coaching young players.
“We found that, that works for us, and our school size and we have guys waiting for their chance to play and repeat our success.”