Swami feeling the pressure

Swami is under the gun with time running out on a move. The All-Knowing-One thought he had all the time in world, but when he looked at the calendar, time is running out. Swami knows once the move is over, it will feel good and he can relax. Until then, he’s on edge, hoping to get everything done in time.

It is interesting that some local teams are feeling that same pressure, but everyone will get a chance to play a playoff game. Basically they have an automatic bid to this year’s playoffs. Swami is hoping that this will be a one-time deal and we can get back to competitive play next year. Let’s see if Swami can maintain his competitive edge this week:

ALPENA (0-3) at TRAVERSE CITY CENTRAL (3-0)–7 p.m.–Friday–The Wildcats were in position for the win against Gaylord last week, putting together a drive that knotted the score at 27 late in the fourth quarter. In the end, the Wildcats let victory slip through their fingers, as a 30-yard field goal by Corey Deer made the difference.

The Wildcats were actually snakebitten twice. As time ran out in the half, Deer was on the receiving end of a Hail Mary. Every time the Wildcats made a move offensively, the Blue Devils countered with one of their own.

Alpena quarterback Ryan Voltz finished with a subpar passing night, but did put three scores on the board with his arm, while accounting for 108 yards. The duo of Kadyn Budnick and Charlie Williams–Alpena’s 1-2 tandem– finished the game with 93 yards and 86 yards on the ground respectively. Swami feels the offense has improved enough to win, but the biggest challenge of the year will be Traverse City Central.

The Trojans are walking over opponents with very little resistance. Their biggest threat came in the last game when Cadillac, a team that blanked the Wildcats, came within two points in the first half of the Trojans. Adjustments by Central put the Vikings on their heels and the game ended in a 41-17 Central win.

Quarterback Josh Burnham put the Trojans in control of the Big North Conference with runs of 68, 1 and 10 yards, while picking up 131 yards on just 11 carries. The margin of error is very minimal when you want to keep Central off the field. Carson Bourod was proof of that, picking off two errant throws, giving him six on the season so far.

Swami says it will be a tall order for Alpena to win. Not one mistake can be made as the Trojans have taken advantage of them, while rolling up 143 points in just three games.

Swami Sez: Traverse City Central 42, Alpena 8.

POSEN (2-0) at HILLMAN (1-2)–7 p.m.–Friday–An excellent start for Hillman has turned into disaster the past two weeks. Quarterback Sean Henigan has been silenced on the ground and through the air, the backfield of Owen Moulton, London Achatz and Jeff Klein has hit a stone wall, which has been the main reason why the Tigers have only scored three touchdowns over the last eight quarters. Swami could see why the Tigers were not able to get the offense going against Portland St. Patrick, a team that is expected to go deep into the playoffs. But against Hale, they just kept shooting themselves in the foot with unnecessary turnovers.

Posen has been able to score at will, but the Vikings’ defense has not caught up with the defense. Swami says it’s lucky Posen has had the offense to carry it and keep them ahead of the opposition in both games. Timely offense was enough to pull the Vikings through against Au Gres two weeks ago. Lucas Stone was the savior, rushing for two touchdowns and a pick six as Posen rallied. Stone finished the night with 272 rushing yards on only 12 carries. On the defense, he likewise led the defense with 16 tackles.

Swami sees this game being a high-scoring affair as both teams mirror each other in terms of offense. With that in mind, the All-Knowing-One feels it will come down to which defense shows up.

Swami Sez: Posen 48, Hillman 42.

MIO (0-3) at HALE (1-2)–7 p.m.–Friday–Mio is doing well in Swami’s eyes despite some roster turnover. Swami can feel for the Thunderbolts, but opponents remember what happened to them last year and have shown no sympathy. The All-Knowing-One says Mio has been led by a committee of three seniors, so the younger players have been looking to themselves for inspiration.

Hale exploded for 60 points in an easy win over Au Gres, which has been the norm. The Eagles’ defense has not been as stringent as last year, but have been improving. Quarterback Robert Rosebrugh has been the igniter on offense, both rushing and passing. In the easy win, Rosebrugh rushed for 124 yards and two touchdowns, while connecting on three passes for 104 yards and two more scores.

Swami feels Mio’s defense has too much on its plate to concentrate and to make the stops. The All-Knowing-One says the Eagles have more weapons than just Rosebrugh, so that will put more pressure on the Thunderbolts.

Swami Sez: Hale 50, Mio 12.

ONAWAY (3-0) at ATLANTA (2-1)–1 p.m.–Saturday–This is what high school is all about: a battle of two experienced teams.

The Cardinals have 11 seniors with a vast amount of experience. Quarterback Kevin Pearson has teamed up with Branden Fenstermaker for four years and Joey Galvez at the other running position gives the Cardinals a set backfield. Cody Lovelace and Colby Pauly have been anchors on the offensive line, while the trio of Jager Mix, Daniel Price and Ian Veal have provided a stiff defense. The only points the Cardinals’ defense has given up was a late score to Central Lake last week.

Atlanta doesn’t have the senior core that Onaway has, but their players aren’t newcomers either. Ethan Byrne and Aaron Cuzzort comprise the senior leadership, but juniors and sophomores are well represented with six more players. Junior quarterback Trace Juergens has been the playmaker that makes the Huskies’ offense tick. Swami has to say the ability for the big play will come through the air, Byrne, T.J. Currie have broke off chunks of yardage as well.

Swami says this should be the perfect game for a beautiful fall day. There will be offense galore and plenty of points on the board.

Swami Sez: Onaway 58, Atlanta 44.


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