3 more wins for playoffs
September 28, 2011 - The field was wet when the gridiron gang ran onto it in their practice gear Monday afternoon, but spirits were high after taking down OAA Red Pontiac, 42-18, at Homecoming.
Joey Goss heads off against a Pontiac defender. Photo by Larry Wright (click for larger version)
"We just have to continue to make strides in practice," said senior quarterback Mitch Baenziger after last Friday's win. "Every day we have to go out and give 110 percent. If we are making strides we should be on our way."
The boys have four more games and need three more wins to clinch a playoff berth.
"We are in a battle," Miller said, thinking ahead to the last of the regular season games. "We are going to have a tough OAA crossover game and then go against Lake Orion. We still have our work cut out for us."
But first up is Rochester, whose most recent loss to Troy Athens left them at a 1-4 overall record and 0-4 in the OAA Red.
"Rochester is struggling a little bit," admitted Wolves' Varsity Head Football Coach Kurt Richardson. "They are a little banged up."
He added after the Pontiac game the offensive line brings back focus and executing on their running game. Once the focus is back the team will be in good shape.
"It wasn't a very good running the ball," Richardson said. "The guys up front have to block."
Defensive coordinator Tony Miller agreed execution will need focus.
"The scoreboard reflected a great game against Pontiac," he said. "But the execution still needs improvement. We can get better and that is our goal week after week to get better. We don't believe you stay the same you get better or worse."
The defensive line's focus on Rochester spreading out on the field and their consistency of throwing passes.
"We just have to play our type of football," said Miller. "We just have to play a complete 11-man and have all of them play the same defense. We need 11 kids to fly around and hit someone. We are having that trouble. Overall we will be alright and ready to play."
Richardson added the boys are healthy which is a plus going into the sixth week in the season, especially after the Pontiac game.
Baenziger led the Wolves' offense with five touchdown passes with 215 yards on 9-of-14 passing attempts.
His first touchdown pass connected with senior runningback Joey Goss on a 34-yard throw, putting the boys on the board with 2:27 left in the first quarter.
Three more touchdown passes put the Wolves into the lead with two touchdown passes to senior runningback Evan Montgomery, the first on 37-yard pass and the second on a 28-yard pass. Mike Schwartz made his touchdown off a 4-yard pass from Baenziger.
Seniors Matt Dellinger and BenKaminsky added two more touchdowns each in the third quarter.
Senior Alex Barta made all of his six PAT attempts.
"We played good," said Baenziger. "Great job to my linemen, they did a great job protecting me tonight. Defensively we had a good first half. Then hit the third quarter and we started to lose it at the end."
The momentum led to 12 points for Pontiac to close the game, 42-18.
"We have a good team," said Miller. "We are trying to make a long run. We are trying to go the right way to bring a state championship here but you have to get better to do it."
The Wolves head to Rochester High School on Friday night to play for their fourth win. The game is at 180 South Livernois Road. Kick off is at 7 p.m.
Wendi graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a degree in communications. She wrote for the Michigan Times college paper and Grand Blanc View before joining The Clarkston News in October 2007.