2017-11-09 / Sports

Cardinals crash back to earth, ending season

By Joe Oster
810-452-2641 • joster@mihomepaper.com

Austin Roland looks to break to the outside after taking an end-around handoff on Saturday 
Photo by Joe Oster Austin Roland looks to break to the outside after taking an end-around handoff on Saturday Photo by Joe Oster DAVISON – The Davison varsity football team’s season was put to sleep last Saturday night with a 28-0 blowout at the hands of the Clarkston Wolves. The ballgame reflected the rainy weather and the mud-soaked field, as both teams were unable to consistently make explosive offensive plays and thus resorted to pounding the ball up the middle.

Clarkston kept Davison at an arm’s length all evening, toying with the Cardinal defense by gaining 285 total yards without even attempting a pass.

The Wolves started with 28-yard touchdown run on the game’s opening drive, taking a 7-0 lead. Neither team threatened offensively for the rest of the quarter, but Clarkston scored again on a three-yard run, advancing its lead to 14-0 with 9:32 left in the first half.

Facing a third-and-long on their own four yard-line late in the second quarter, quarterback Cannon Hall gave the Cardinals a fleeting glimmer of hope with a 46-yard scramble that brought the ball into Clarkston territory, but the drive ultimately stalled out, leaving the score at 14-0 going into the half.

Davison looked to be in decent position, opening the second half with the ball, but Hall wasn’t able to corral a low snap out of the shotgun formation, resulting in Clarkston recovering the fumble and regaining possession deep in Cardinal territory.

A few plays later, Clarkston fumbled its own snap inside the five-yard line, but the Wolves’ running back picked up the loose football and darted into the end zone for a three-yard touchdown and a 21-0 lead.

Davison showed its final sign of life midway through the third quarter, when defensive back Cal Stefanko recovered a fumble inside Clarkston’s 20-yard line. However, the drive stalled out again and resulted in a turnover-on-downs.

The Wolves punched in another touchdown from one yard out later in the penultimate quarter, giving the ballgame its 28-0 final score.

Hall and Austin Roland were the only bright spots on offense for the Cardinals. Hall ran for 49 yards on 15 carries, while also passing 12-for-20 for 78 yards, but threw two interceptions.

Roland caught five of Hall’s passes for 42 yards and also carried the ball twice for 13 yards.

The Wolves’ defense held Davison star running back Tariq Reid on only 34 yards on 14 carries. Still, Reid broke the Genesee County career rushing record on a run in the first quarter, finishing with 5,834 rushing yards as Genesee County’s all-time leading rusher. He also caught three passes for 15 yards.

Lamar Hay also carried the ball twice for 18 yards. Tyreese Watson had a 13-yard reception, Max Slezak caught a five-yard pass and Anthony Fordham had one reception for four yards.

Gabe Ellis was the catalyst for the Cardinal defense, recording 14 tackles and 10 assists. Trevor Brown added 4.5 tackles and three assists. Stefanko also had 3.5 tackles, three assists and a fumble recovery.

With the loss, Davison finishes the season 9-2 overall and 5-1 in Saginaw Valley League play.

Clarkston, 9-2, travels to Holland West Ottawa, 10-1, for the regional semifinal Saturday at 1 p.m.

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