Wildcats top Blue Devils to improve to 2-0

SAULT STE. MARIE — Nothing came easy for the Alpena football team on Friday, but in the end, the Wildcats stayed strong and remained unbeaten in 2018 as they traveled across the bridge and came away with a hard fought 12-6 victory over Sault Ste. Marie.

“We kept battling all night. We faced a lot of adversity throughout the night, but we came through in the end,” Alpena coach Aaron Sims said.

The Wildcats held a 6-0 lead at the half and took their first possession of the second half down the field and reached the end zone to take a 12-0 lead.

Sault answered late in the third quarter and cut the lead in half and trailed 12-6 entering the fourth quarter.

“Sault Ste. Marie was doing their best to take away Logan and they were physical inside,” Sims said. “We had a couple costly penalties and we hurt ourselves at times throughout the game.”

Defense was the story for Alpena as it forced three turnovers in the contest.

Haydn Goebel intercepted a ball in the back of the end zone and returned it 60 yards and Kody Bertand picked off a pass and forced a fumble that Zak Suszek recovered.

The Wildcats came up with the game-winning stop on a 4th and 20 from their own 40 yard line to secure the win.

Logan Guthrie led the Wildcats with 133 yards on 18 carries and scored a touchdown. Jordan Schultz had 14 rushes for 81 yards and a touchdown and Eric Troy added 49 yards rushing on seven carries.

Kelley Stark led the defense with seven tackles, Guthrie had three solo tackles and assisted on five others, Schultz had four solo tackles and assisted on two and Eli Winter chipped in with four tackles.

Alpena improves to 2-0 for the first time since 2004.

The Wildcats will hit the road again Friday when they travel to Gaylord to open Big North Conference play with the 2-0 Blue Devils.

“It;s good to be 2-0. We’re going to enjoy it for a little bit and get ready to get back to work on Monday,” Sims said. “Gaylord is 2-0, we’re 2-0 we just have to have the right mindset going in and we have to be ready to work this week because there are things we need to get better at.”

CROSS COUNTRY

Alpena shines at Dwayne Rau Invitational

WEST BRANCH — The Alpena cross country teams competed at the Dwayne Rau Memorial Invitational on Thursday.

The Wildcats were among 12 teams competing in the event.

The Alpena boys took first overall and were paced by Josh Smith finished first. Smith’s time of 16:16.12 was good enough for ninth overall in the top 100 runners all time on the 30 year course.

A handful of Wildcats were among the top performers of the day including Drew Seabase who placed third with a time of 17:55.01, Jacob Kochanski (ninth, 18:06.08), Sam Tuscher (10th, 18:09.68), Clay Donajkowski (13th, 18:27.16) , Jimmy Decker (22nd, 19:06.96) and Zach Zaborney (28th, 19:23.06) as they all finished in the top 30 of 137 total racers.

The Alpena girls placed second. Maddy Boyd took first for the Wildcats and finished second overall with a time of (19:26.71).

Madi Szymanski took third and recorded the second fastest time for a freshman in Alpena history at 19:42.55.

Other top performers were Kaylee Rondeau (17th, 22:13.05), Tiffany Foster (18th, 22:41.43), Alexis Reynolds (23rd, 23:26.45), Malley McGuire (31st, 23:57.50) and Maggie Thayer (46th, 24:46.88) who all finished among the top 50 out of 127 total runners.

Alpena will be back in action next Saturday when they travel to Midland for the Lancer Invitational.