By Frank Vajcner
It’s a David vs. Goliath type of matchup between Summerfield and Clarkston Everest at the Brighton Legacy Center on Saturday for the Regional Championship. Both programs are looking for their first Regional title in their respective program history. This is the first meeting between both programs.
Summerfield Bulldogs (4-5, ninth playoff appearance)
HOW THEY GOT HERE
Defeated Allen Park Cabrini 41-0 in Round 1
Defeated Detroit Southeastern 29-20 in District Semifinals
Defeated Whiteford 34-14 in District Finals
Alex Lipka and company have just kept on keeping on after entering the playoffs with a 1-5 record. The Bulldogs are one of just two teams remaining with a losing record, with Oak Park (4-5) being the other.
Offensively, the Dawgs like to air it out behind QB Devin Albain, who has thrown for 1807 yards and 20 TDs. Gavin Fietz (23 receptions, 532 yards, 7 TDs) and Ethan Eyler (25 receptions, 422 yards, 5 TDs) have been the leaders in the receiving corps, but Roman Iott (13 receptions, 349 yards, 3 TDs) Drew Dafoe (13 receptions, 196 yards, 2 TDs), and Brandon Thompson (10 receptions, 178 yards, 2 TDs) have all come on strong. Jake LaRocca (418 rushing yards, 3 TDs) and Albain (350 rushing yards, 7 TDs) are the main options for running the ball.
Defense has been a strong suit in the postseason for the Dawgs, as they are allowing 11.3 points per game in three playoff games. Eyler has been the leader on the defensive side with 143 tackles, 2 sacks, an interception, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery. LaRocca (70 tackles, sack), Dafoe (68 tackles, sack, 2 interceptions, forced fumble, 3 fumble recoveries), and Albain (51 tackles, sack, 3 interceptions) are other names to watch.
Clarkston Everest Collegiate Mountaineers (9-0, eighth playoff appearance)
HOW THEY GOT HERE:
Defeated Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest 41-0 in Round 1
Defeated Sterling Heights Parkway Christian 47-0 in District Semifinals
Defeated Royal Oak Shrine Catholic 23-13 in District Finals
Michael Pruchnicki has the Mountaineers 9-0 for the first time in the short history of the program. They have only been playing football since 2013.
The Mountaineers QB may have the best name of anyone we have covered; Giovanni Mastromatteo. He has completed 63.2% of his passes for 950 yards and 11 touchdowns. Joey Thibodeau (14 catches, 302 yards, 4 touchdowns) and Jimmy Neme (13 catches, 184 yards, 4 touchdowns) will lead the way catching the ball. When running the ball, look for Jack Lasceski (699 rushing yards, 10 touchdowns) to carry the mail.
Defensively, John Suran (45 tackles) and Dominic Cross (41 tackles, 7 sacks) lead the way up front. Johnny Nedwick (3 interceptions) is a name to watch in the secondary, and is also a dangerous returner.
FNV Outlook: With this game being indoors on turf, look for big plays from both offenses to rule the day.