Swami is feeling the chill of an early fall
The change between summer and fall brings about colors that are next to none in terms of beauty. It also means cooler temperatures. For Swami, that means stoking the wood burner to bring on the heat to the house.
Swami isn’t the only one in need of heat. Some area teams are fighting a case of the chills; they need one big blast to get them headed in the right direction. Let’s see if the heat will carry Swami this week.
GAYLORD (0-2) at ALPENA (0-2)–7 p.m.–Friday–For the second straight week, Alpena had plenty of motivation, but momentum shifted quickly when the game began.
Cadillac ran the Wildcats to death in week one, while Traverse City West nickeled-and-dimed Alpena through the air and on the ground. The end result was a lopsided loss to the Titans. The Wildcats are in need of offense quickly. The Wildcats looked like they were in position to do it, but just were not able to come successful third down plays, to keep the drives going.
Charlie Williams and Jason Smolinski get the bulk of the carries, but they need to get a step on defense to make the running game effective. Quarterback Ryan Voltz has not been in sync with his receivers. But the All-Knowing-One believes that will come and when it does, it will complete the offense, making the Wildcats a team to be reckoned with.
Gaylord also has nothing to show for two weeks of play, dropping games to Petoskey and Cadillac. The Blue Devils appear to be on the right track with their offense. Gavin Freeman, Quinn Schultz and Corey Deer will give the Wildcats another dose of the run. They need to get the defense on the same page.
Swami sees this game going down to the wire. Neither team has a distinct advantage. It will come down to who blinks first, or makes a mistake.
Swami Sez: Alpena 14, Gaylord 7.
ATLANTA (1-1) at MIO (0-2)–7 p.m.–Friday –Atlanta and Mio appear to have swapped places from last season. Atlanta’s got a win and Mio is at the bottom of the standings.
The Thunderbolts have not played a creampuff schedule to this point, including a game with Whittemore-Prescott last week. After losing some key players, the Thunderbolts are holding their own and will round into shape in the coming weeks. The defense has been attacked from every angle and the coaching staff is looking for ways to compete equally with Atlanta.
The running game got the Huskies nowhere against Merrill in the first half last week, so they went to the air. Quarterback Trace Juergens found a variety of receivers open from Ethan Byrne, Trenton Whitt, and Steven Bilsky, but there was just too much ground to make up to pull out victory. Ethan Byrne and T.J. Currie attempted to establish a run game, but Merrill would not oblige.
Swami Sez: Atlanta 30, Mio 20.
TAWAS (0-2) at OSCODA (2-0)–7 p.m.–Friday–A battle of two teams that are going in different directions. Tawas is coming off a 35-0 shutout loss to Johannesburg-Lewiston, but has shown improvement. Swami has insights into the Braves offense, which is predominately pass-oriented. Quarterback Justin Ulman had a pair of 12-yard completions, which had to Braves on the move, which turned out to be the farthest they got into Cardinal territory. Ulman would finish 9 of 15, with four completions going to Sam Weiss. The defense of the Braves was caught on its heels throughout the game, as the Cardinals made good on all five possessions in the first half.
Oscoda moved the ball with ease for another 50- point game against Rogers City. Owen Franklin has not missed a beat in moving from wide receiver to quarterback. Franklin kept the defense on the move, rushing for 110 yards and three touchdowns, then went to the air for another 132 yards and a single score.
Swami has to say if the defense can stop Franklin, the opposition would have a good chance for a win. The Owls can turn to other weapons that they have not had to resort to so far. The Owls have the luxury of being a well-oiled machine, both on the offensive side and defensively. The All-Knowing-One feels the Braves’ defense will be on field too long, resulting in another big win for the Owls.
Swami Sez: Oscoda 56, Tawas 0.
ALCONA (0-2) at ROGERS CITY (1-1)–7 p.m.–Friday–Can game two between Alcona and Rogers City produce the same thrills as the first? The Tigers saw their lead slip away with a late fourth quarter touchdown; game-winning pass from Isaac Hein to Matt Newhouse occurred as time ran out. It was a game that the Hurons would like to reproduce, while the Tigers are hoping to return the favor.
Alcona’s offense scored 18 points against Marlette last week, but it was a struggle to get those. Zach Stephenson accounted for two scores, and Gavin Walker had the other touchdown on the ground. Overall, the Tiger defense did a yeoman’s job. Walker led the way with 12 tackles, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries, Stephenson added 10 tackles. Swami says it was the little things that Marlette did to lead it to victory.
Rogers City’s game against Oscoda was a completely different story. The Hurons’ offense was completely shut down. Hein had a rough night with only 37 passing yards. The ground was completely closed down with only 27 yards.
Swami has to ask, which team will rebound? The Tigers with a pair 18-point performances and looking for a win or the Hurons being lit up by Oscoda?
Swami Sez: Rogers City 20, Alcona 14.