The final game of the season always has some excitement, and tonight didn't disappoint. Check out the big games of the week, and be sure to tune in tomorrow for the MHSAA Playoff Selection show where all of the playoff brackets will be announced.
Whoa-factor Games of the Night
CLARKSTON 42 LAKE ORION 13 - It's always great to have the last game of the regular season mean so much. This one decided the OAA Championship, not to mention the fact that it's become a huge rivalry match. Lake Orion only dropped one other game this season, but Clarkston ran the table and goes into the playoffs undefeated. That secures home field advantage for them, but they'll certainly see Lake Orion again in the playoffs. It's possible we even see a re-match next week.
Dearborn Fordson 24 ANN ARBOR PIONEER 21 - Fordson felt like everyone doubted them all season. If you were a doubter, it's time to put it down. Fordson is for real, and this win over a very good Pioneer squad not only gives them an undefeated season, it also gives them home-field advantage in the playoffs. Somebody is going to have their work cut out for them when they draw the Tractors in Round 1. Expect a playoff run from Fordson as this team is solid.
DETROIT CASS TECH 44 DETROIT NORTHWESTERN 6 - What a big win for Cass Tech. This one puts them in the playoffs. With only 8 games on their schedule, Cass finishes at 5-3. Northwestern wasn't a bad team either, so the 44-6 score means that Cass Tech came to play. Now they will probably get another shot at either King or Southeastern who both beat them earlier in the season.
DETROIT COUNTRY DAY 21 PONTIAC 7 - The consolidation of Pontiac's two high schools has been great for the football program. They were 7-1 going into this game. Country Day was just 5-3 before tonight, so they needed this one for an automatic bid. They may have gotten in on playoff points because their schedule was so difficult, but you never want to count on that. DCD probably never thought they'd have to go into Pontiac the last game of the season and play a 7-1 Division 1 team to make the playoffs, but they pulled it off. Their loss to Midland last week put them in a bad position, but this win gives them some momentum headed into the playoffs. They won't see any schools nearly as large as Pontiac or Midland, so they should be ready for whatever Selection Sunday brings.
Detroit Southeastern 19 BIRMINGHAM BROTHER RICE 13 - This is an incredible win, not only for Southeastern, but for the entire PSL. Beating a Catholic League powerhouse is a statement, and gives Southeastern huge momentum heading into the playoffs. It's also an enormous loss for Rice, who finishes the season at 5-4 and has to hope they make the playoffs on points. The Catholic League gives them a very strong schedule, but it's all going to come down to how many other D2 schools get in. Wow. Never would have thought Rice could sit out of the playoffs. They could be joined by Orchard Lake St. Mary's too if DCC pops them.
Inkster 36 STEUBENVILLE (OH) 29 - If the wins above weren't big enough, this one may top them all. After starting out the season 0-2, things looked bleak for the Vikings. With an eight-game schedule, they only needed five wins to make the playoffs. They rattled off four straight, but had two of the top programs in Ohio left on the schedule. Last week, they dropped one to St. Ignatius in Cleveland which meant they had to travel to Steubenville, OH to play one of the top teams in the state. Steubenville was a perfect 8-0 heading into the game, and they had home-field advantage. With their backs against the wall, Inkster pulled out what is probably the biggest win of the season for any team in Michigan. Not too many people gave them a chance in this one, but Coach Carter, QB Devin Gardner and company found a way. The victory puts Inkster at 5-3 and gives them their all-important ticket to the dance.
Other important (but not necessarily surprising) scores from around the state
BAY CITY CENTRAL 27 BAY CITY WESTERN 19
Berkley 34 AUBURN HILLS AVONDALE 31 (2 OT)
CHELSEA 34 SALINE 21
Dearborn Edsel Ford 60 GARDEN CITY 0
DETROIT CROCKETT 33 DETROIT COOLEY 0
DEWITT 52 ST JOHNS 7
EAST GRAND RAPIDS 48 GRAND RAPIDS CRESTON 0
FENTON 36 FLINT KEARSLEY 7
GRAND BLANC 42 YPSILANTI LINCOLN 12
Grand Haven 27 EAST KENTWOOD 0
Grand Ledge 21 HOWELL 7
Highland Park 25 DEARBORN 7
HOLT 23 DAVISON 8
Jackson Lumen Christi 44 KALAMAZOO CENTRAL 20
LINDEN 43 ORTONVILLE-BRANDON 15
LIVONIA STEVENSON 42 LIVONIA CHURCHILL 10
LOWELL 54 GRAND RAPIDS NORTHVIEW 14
MACOMB DAKOTA 35 MACOMB L'ANSE CREUSE NORTH 0
Madison Heights Madison 41 CLAWSON 0
Melvindale 42 ALLEN PARK 0
MENDON 66 COVERT 0
Midland 14 MIDLAND DOW 0
Montague 13 FREMONT 0
Mt Pleasant 45 FRUITPORT 7
Muskegon 27 HOLLAND WEST OTTAWA 0
Muskegon Oakridge 38 MUSKEGON ORCHARD VIEW 14
Rockford 42 GRANDVILLE 17
SOUTHFIELD 28 SOUTHFIELD-LATHRUP 3
STERLING HEIGHTS STEVENSON 49 WARREN MOTT 21
Traverse City Central 25 TRAVERSE CITY WEST 6
Traverse City St Francis 50 ELK RAPIDS 7
WESTLAND JOHN GLENN 30 WALLED LAKE WESTERN 29
Wyandotte Roosevelt 24 SOUTHGATE ANDERSON 14