MARQUETTE, MI – 11/14/2014 – We’re nearing the finish line. With just two more wins needed to advance to the penultimate game in the high school playoffs, there are still four U.P. teams looking to bring glory back to the true Northern Michigan, and this weekend, some will get to have the chance to do it on the campus of NMU. Others will be playing on their home field. It’s going to be an exciting weekend of football as teams make their final preparations for the quarterfinals. Here’s the U.P. schedule of events!
- Menominee Maroons vs. Freeland Falcons – Nov. 15th 2pm
- The #1 seed in all of Division-V football in Michigan, the 11-0 Maroons are looking to reclaim the glory they had in the late-middle 2000’s by advancing to the state semifinals this Saturday. The game will feature two high powered offenses, as Freeland is averaging an impressive 40 points per game, while Menominee is even more ridiculous putting up just a shade under 50 ppg (49.5)! The game falls on opening day, so some hunters will have to make a decision, but the game will be in Menominee at 2pm on Saturday.
- Ishpeming Hematites vs. T.C. St. Francis Gladiators – Nov. 14 @ 7pm
- It may not have been as pretty as it has been, but the Ishpeming Hematites continued their impressive win streak and are still on course for their third straight state championship. This time, they’ll host a usual basketball powerhouse in Traverse City St. Francis (9-2). The weather that has been thrown upon us this week forced an outside game indoors, as the decision was made to play the game at NMU’s Superior Dome. The turf actually favors TC St. Francis as they’ve played on it a couple times this season already, and the Hematites will need an adjustment to it, so that should be something to watch. The game will take place tonight at 7pm! You can catch all of the action on 98.3 WRUP with Mike Plourde & Bob Nadeau starting at 6:30.
- Munising Mustangs vs. Forest Park Trojans – Nov. 15 @ 7pm
- This one will be good. The 10-1 Munising Mustangs are going to take on perennial powerhouse Forest Park in the Superior Dome. The Mustangs are coming off of an absolutely dominating defensive performance against St. Ignace, coming out on top 24-6. Meanwhile, the Trojans have put up some impressive offensive numbers en route to another quarterfinals appearance. Another “opening day” game, but definitely one you’ll want to see. You can catch all of the action with Charlie Nebel on AM1400 WQXO starting at 6:30 with a 7pm kickoff!
The stage is set ladies and gentlemen. As always in the playoffs, some will continue their football playing days, while some will hang ’em up for the last time. It’s really something you don’t realize until the next August rolls around. For teams like Negaunee, Calumet, West Iron County, Bark River-Harris, and St. Ignace, this week will be hard to watch. It really hasn’t sunk in yet, but even me at age 23 can’t help but feel envious of all the teams going into this weekend’s contests. All of the work, preparation, and anxiety they’re all feeling is a once in a lifetime feeling that they’ll all miss one day. So if you’re team is still alive, or you’re just into the whole “U.P. Power” thing, get down to the Superior Dome the next two days. The deer will still be there the next morning, and the beers will still be cold. This is going to be worth it.
-Carl Leander Johnson