By Joseph Hayes
It was a special season, any way you decide to look at it.
A season that started with four consecutive wins and included a playoff victory over rival Port Huron Northern in the postseason, came to a conclusion Friday night with a 44-28 loss at Birmingham Seaholm in a Division 2 regional final.
Seaholm (9-3) won its first regional title since 1997 and advanced to face Detroit Martin Luther King Jr. on Nov. 23.
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Port Huron advanced into its first regional final since 2011 and ends the season 8-4.
Seaholm scored just minutes into the game on a 39 yard touchdown pass from Caleb Knoer to Chaz Strecker that gave Seaholm early momentum.
Port Huron would never lead in the game and struggled early to find a rhythm on offense. Meanwhile, Seaholm appeared at near precision on some of its early drives.
“They were more ready to play than us and were being way more physical than we were,” Port Huron junior linebacker Caleb Collier said. “We weren’t physical enough and they were beating us off the ball every play.
“It is just going to make us stronger. We are going to come back even stronger. We have younger kids looking up to us and we are going to have an even better year next year.”
The Maples lead would quickly grow to 10-0 on a Justin Klotz 29-yard field goal; and continued to grow all of the way to 31-0 in the third quarter, before Luke Van Der Feyst finally put the Big Reds on the board with a three yard touchdown run.
Van Der Feyst would add another 3-yard score for Port Huron and the Big Reds would add a couple of late scores in the fourth quarter.
“It was a great season,” Big Reds offensive lineman Javaughnte Hubbard said. “I’m glad all of the seniors stepped up. We had a pretty good season. We knew from the beginning it would be a good season.
“I was told from the beginning to be a leader. They have to go out next year and do what they are supposed to do.”
Joseph Hayes is the new Managing Editor at Blue Water Healthy Living. Hayes was previously at the Port Huron Times Herald and hosted a show on Power 88.3. He has additional experience at The Detroit News, Detroit Free Press and Jackson Citizen Patriot and WDFN 1130. Contact Hayes at firstname.lastname@example.org