2022 Schedule Analysis: Summerfield Bulldogs

By Frank Vajcner

We now head to my hometown of Petersburg for a look at Summerfield. The Bulldogs put together a 6-4 season in 2021. Does the schedule allow for similar or better success?

2022 Schedule:

Aug 26 Waterford Our Lady

Sept 1 Fowler

Sept 10 @ St. Charles

Sept 16 Erie Mason

Sept 23 @ Whiteford

Oct 1 @ Adrian Madison

Oct 7 Sand Creek

Oct 14 Pioneer North Central (Ohio)

Oct 22 @ Flint New Standard

Gut-Check Game: With the Tri-County Conference having shrunk to five schools playing 11-man football, and all five coming off of seasons with winning records, take your pick for who the toughest could be. Erie Mason has won the last three meetings by a combined score of 148-69. Whiteford is coming off of a State Semifinal appearance, and beat the Bulldogs twice by a combined score of 88-0. Sand Creek has won the last four meetings, with the last three being by more than three scores. Even Adrian Madison, despite getting beat by the Dawgs 36-8, have been on the rise in the last couple of years (more on that later). Alex Lipka and company really don’t have a ton of room for error in conference play.

Trap Game: Going back to Madison, the Trojans have become a respectable program the last two seasons. But the real reason I’m putting this one here is that the game is sandwiched between a rivalry game at Whiteford, and a visit from conference power Sand Creek. And did I mention that this game kicks off at high noon on a Saturday? Lipka will have to put extra emphasis on keeping his squad focused.

Snoozer: Waterford Our Lady made minor improvement from an 0-7 season to going 1-8. The Lakers were thrashed 40-14 by the Dawgs last season. St. Charles isn’t much better, as the Bulldogs were 1-8. And while I realize that Flint New Standard is only in their third season as a varsity program, the Spartans have put up 62 points in 15 games.

Non-Conference Challenge: Fowler will come to town in Week 2. The Eagles went 7-4 last season, and have qualified for the playoffs in 26 of the last 30 seasons. Summerfield also welcomes Pioneer North Central, who is in their first season of 11-man football, in Week 8.

Notable: Summerfield will be playing three Saturday matinee games, as they will travel to St. Charles, which is just southwest of Saginaw, and Flint New Standard, in addition to their nooner against Adrian Madison…The reason the Bulldogs and Trojans will be playing at noon on a Saturday is to celebrate the Tri-County-Conference’s 50th anniversary.

Thoughts from Frank: I have to give the Bulldogs credit for a little creativity in their schedule. Two Saturday road trips to the Flint-Saginaw areas, plus bringing in a perennial playoff team. Playoff points will be at a premium with mostly small schools on the slate, so wins and opponent wins will be key for a playoff appearance.

Thoughts from Chris: Summerfield’s schedule was one of the reasons I suggested that the state may need to step in and take over football scheduling in the article Frank and I co-authored, Conference Realignment and Scheduling. With that said, I applaud Summerfield AD, Kelly Kalb and Head Coach Alex Lipka for finding a complete schedule for their kids. The TCC schedule will be tough as they will need to find a way to scratch out a win against some solids teams. The non-league portion of the schedule is a positive and should result in wins with the Fowler game being the lone questionable outcome.

Thoughts from Gary: Looking at their non-league slate, two games jump out at me. Fowler comes to town as one of the best D8 programs ever with 50 playoff victories. A challenge to say the least. How will the 2-hour trek up US23 to take on St. Charles, affect the Bulldogs? The battle of the Bulldogs is a must-win. St. Charles has fallen off as of late, which has me leaning Summerfield will have the upper hand. It would also seem Summerfield will need to win a game or two in the TCC, which will not be easy. 5-4 may get them in the playoffs but it’s not a certainty by any means.

2 thoughts on “2022 Schedule Analysis: Summerfield Bulldogs”

  1. I give Coach Lipka a ton of a credit. He is the most underrated coach in our area because he wins with less kids than anyone else. I see their schedule breaking down like this:
    Aug 26 Waterford Our Lady- WIN
    Sept 1 Fowler- WIN
    Sept 10 @ St. Charles- WIN
    Sept 16 Erie Mason- LOSS
    Sept 23 @ Whiteford- LOSS
    Oct 1 @ Adrian Madison- LOSS
    Oct 7 Sand Creek- LOSS
    Oct 14 Pioneer North Central (Ohio)- WIN
    Oct 22 @ Flint New Standard- WIN

    Summerfield finishes 5-4 and makes noise in the D8 playoffs. I doubt they make it to Ford Field but if you are from Monroe County, you should understand how good of a job Coach Lipka and his staff are doing as I don’t think they have more than 35 kids in their program 9-12 but yet they find a way to make the playoffs year after year. Keep up the good work, Go Bulldogs!

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