New Lothrop defeats Hudson, 38-24, in Division 4 final to capture 14th title
PHOTO CREDIT: Courtesy of MHSAA (Geoff Kimmerly)
BATTLE CREEK — New Lothrop has had several decades of success and intertwined have been many ups and downs.
Top-seeded New Lothrop added another thrill ride Saturday at Battle Creek’s Kellogg Arena, this time ending with the school’s 14th state title in the form of a 38-24 victory over Hudson.
“Every year is different,” said New Lothrop coach Jeff Campbell. “It feels different because it’s a different mix of kids. But we don’t take it for granted, either. It’s so hard just to get here. There’s so many good teams and so much tradition here. Getting to Battle Creek is never easy and winning once you get here is never easy.”
New Lothrop (29-1) trailed 9-0 after two matches, quickly tied it at 9-9, and ventured on a 19-0 run through six weight classes for a 19-9 advantage.
Hudson (23-6) closed the gap to 22-21 through 10 matches, only to have New Lothrop go on a 20-0 run over the next three battles to clinch the deal.
“The one thing I did was grabbed enough young kids to walk with us in the grand march. They are our future in our community,” said Campbell. “As you can see we are a small town community and most of the town was here. I want the younger kids to be a part of this and know what it takes to succeed. A lot of our current kids grew up watching our program and saw what it takes to be successful. There’s a lot of hard work, dedication and support that goes into it. We wouldn’t be here all the time if we didn’t have (those ingredients).”
Hudson was making its seventh straight state final appearance. The Tigers won five straight from 2009-13 and finished runner up in ‘14 and ‘15.
“We lost to a very good team,” sighed Hudson coach Scott Marry. “We’ve had a great run of getting (to the finals) seven straight years. The kids understand our tradition and what it takes to get here. This year we came up a bit short.”
Among New Lothrop’s winners were Cole Hersch in the 130-pound weight division and Gabe Bennett at 135.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Highlights of New Lothrop’s D-4 State Championship can be seen on the State Champs! High School Sports Show, Sunday at 9:00 am on Fox Sports Detroit.