2016-11-10 / Sports

St. Ignace Tops Newberry 26-6 To Earn Second Consecutive District Crown

By Erich T. Doerr


At right: Newberry running back Adam Hildebrandt (#7) has the ball as he makes a run for it, but he may not make it much further as St. Ignace’s Micah Davis (#58) is hot on his heels during the first quarter of the district championship game in St. Ignace Friday, November 4. Also in action on this play are the Saints’ Carter Tallaire (#84) and David VanHeuvelen (#67) and the Indians’ David Carlson (#55) and Joe Stewart (#51). At right: Newberry running back Adam Hildebrandt (#7) has the ball as he makes a run for it, but he may not make it much further as St. Ignace’s Micah Davis (#58) is hot on his heels during the first quarter of the district championship game in St. Ignace Friday, November 4. Also in action on this play are the Saints’ Carter Tallaire (#84) and David VanHeuvelen (#67) and the Indians’ David Carlson (#55) and Joe Stewart (#51). Friday, November 4, was again title time in St. Ignace as the Saints football team repeated as district champions with a 26-6 victory over Newberry. Both teams held each other scoreless in the first quarter before St. Ignace (10-1) built a large lead over Newberry (8-3) that it would never relinquish in the second. The Saints made a lot of progress on the ground as the team combined for 417 yards of rushing and three touchdowns on 60 carries.

“We did what we had to do,” St. Ignace coach Marty Spencer said. “We controlled the ball tonight. Our offensive line was spectacular and opened up a lot of holes for us.”


St. Ignace quarterback Steve Seccia (#11) hands off to Mitchell Peterson (#22) after Peterson, Kenney Rickley (#32), and David LaVake (#4) all rush toward him following the start of a play in the first quarter. The Saints offensive line including (from left) Preston Mayle (#87), David VanHeuvelen (#67), Reid Marshall (#61), Jared Helms (#54), and Carter Tallaire (#84) blocks Newberry’s defense from getting through for a moment. St. Ignace coach Marty Spencer said his offensive line played a spectacular game and opened up many holes as the team recorded 417 total yards of rushing on the way to a 26-6 victory. St. Ignace quarterback Steve Seccia (#11) hands off to Mitchell Peterson (#22) after Peterson, Kenney Rickley (#32), and David LaVake (#4) all rush toward him following the start of a play in the first quarter. The Saints offensive line including (from left) Preston Mayle (#87), David VanHeuvelen (#67), Reid Marshall (#61), Jared Helms (#54), and Carter Tallaire (#84) blocks Newberry’s defense from getting through for a moment. St. Ignace coach Marty Spencer said his offensive line played a spectacular game and opened up many holes as the team recorded 417 total yards of rushing on the way to a 26-6 victory. St. Ignace advances on to the regional finals with the victory and will now play Norway Saturday, November 12, at 1 p.m. at home. Tickets will be $5 for everyone with no passes accepted. The Norway Knights earned their place in the finals by besting the previously undefeated Lake Linden-Hubbell, the only other team to beat Newberry this year, 40-16, in their district final Saturday, November 5. This will be the first meeting between the two teams since Norway defeated St. Ignace in the district finals in 2002.


The St. Ignace Saints won their second-consecutive district championship Friday, November 4, with a 26-6 win at home against Newberry. The Saints posed together on the field with their trophy, including (not in order) players Mason Gustafson (#1), Robert Rountree (#2), David LaVake (#4), Alex France (#10), Steve Seccia (#11), Tucker Shepard (#12), Ryan LaVake (#20), Mitchell Peterson (#22), Cooper Lannoo (#25), Mason Matson (#28), Shawn Livingston (#30), Kenney Rickley (#32), Garrett Kellan (#36), Greg Paquin (#40), Drew Marshall (#52), Jared Helms (#54), Kody Rickley (#55), Trevor Soblaskey (#57), Micah Davis (#58), Christian Ross (#60), Reid Marshall (#61), Jared Cece (#63), David VanHeuvelen (#67), Artie Boucha (#70), Trevor Matson (#73), Jarrett Soblaskey (#75), Luke Valetta (#76), Carter Tallaire (#84), Preston Mayle (#87), Head Coach Marty Spencer, Assistant Coach Les Therrian, Chris Marshall, and Mike Shepard, and managers Garett Rickley, Brendan Insley, and Sawyer Graham. Assistant Coach Chuck McCall and players Sam Fullerton (#50), and Cameron Leveille (#88) are not pictured. The St. Ignace Saints won their second-consecutive district championship Friday, November 4, with a 26-6 win at home against Newberry. The Saints posed together on the field with their trophy, including (not in order) players Mason Gustafson (#1), Robert Rountree (#2), David LaVake (#4), Alex France (#10), Steve Seccia (#11), Tucker Shepard (#12), Ryan LaVake (#20), Mitchell Peterson (#22), Cooper Lannoo (#25), Mason Matson (#28), Shawn Livingston (#30), Kenney Rickley (#32), Garrett Kellan (#36), Greg Paquin (#40), Drew Marshall (#52), Jared Helms (#54), Kody Rickley (#55), Trevor Soblaskey (#57), Micah Davis (#58), Christian Ross (#60), Reid Marshall (#61), Jared Cece (#63), David VanHeuvelen (#67), Artie Boucha (#70), Trevor Matson (#73), Jarrett Soblaskey (#75), Luke Valetta (#76), Carter Tallaire (#84), Preston Mayle (#87), Head Coach Marty Spencer, Assistant Coach Les Therrian, Chris Marshall, and Mike Shepard, and managers Garett Rickley, Brendan Insley, and Sawyer Graham. Assistant Coach Chuck McCall and players Sam Fullerton (#50), and Cameron Leveille (#88) are not pictured. Friday’s game in St. Ignace marked the ninth consecutive district championship appearance for the Saints. The team has had six district championships during that time. This was the first district final for Newberry since the team’s run to the state semifinals in 2004. The Saints have now eliminated the Indians from the playoffs for three years in a row.

“This was a good, hard-fought football game between two good programs,” Newberry coach Fred Bryant said. “We had a few costly interceptions and that fumble to start the third quarter cost us… Those momentum swings were crucial… We’re disappointed with the loss, but all three of our losses this season came against good programs.”

The first quarter was back and forth as both teams saw their offenses stifled by the opposition’s defense. Both teams had two possessions, but as the quarter ended the score remained tied at 0.

St. Ignace’s offense broke through and then busted loose in the second quarter, beginning with a 23-yard touchdown pass from Steve Seccia to Mitchell Peterson. The team’s conversion attempt failed but its lead grew a few moments later. A 48-yard rush by Kenney Rickley and several shorter runs set the stage for David LaVake to dash into the end zone from nine yards out. Seccia then connected with LaVake to add the conversion. Newberry’s next possession ended in a short 13-yard punt after some mistakes on the play. St. Ignace took advantage as one long run by Peterson set him up for a three-yard touchdown to give St. Ignace a 20- 0 lead when halftime arrived.

“We started out slow, but everything worked out,” St. Ignace player Kenney Rickley said. “We weren’t used to their new defense, but we made some adjustments and it started to go our way.”

The Saints kicked off to start the second half, but when a Newberry player fumbled on the first play they recovered the ball. Their first play ended in a penalty but their second saw Rickley run for a 40- yard touchdown that proved to be St. Ignace’s last score of the game. Strong defense and turnovers for both teams, including a Saints interception in the end zone by Peterson, kept both teams off the board for the rest of the third quarter.

The fourth quarter began with the Indians trailing 26-0, but the team showed no signs of surrender. Newberry scored its only touchdown of the game on a seven-yard pass from quarterback John Paramski to Jaylen James. The conversion attempt failed when a pass to Jeff Rahilly, playing the game with a cast on his ankle, fell incomplete. The game was Paramski’s last for Newberry. He was a four-year starter for the team and set several school records during his tenure.

“We did pretty good…we were still in it right through halftime,” Newberry player Jaylen James said. “Our new sweep offense got our players open more and on defense we wrapped them up…St. Ignace’s trap offense worked well against us, though.”

St. Ignace previously defeated Newberry in the final game of the regular season October 21.

Saints Offensive Statistics: Steve Seccia, four of 11 passing for 34 yards and a touchdown, one carry for 11 yards; David LaVake, 18 carries for 126 yards and a touchdown, two receptions for six yards; Kenney Rickley, 11 carries for 123 yards and a touchdown; Mitchell Peterson, 18 carries for 99 yards and a touchdown, one reception for 22 yards and a touchdown; Garrett Kellan, 12 carries for 58 yards; Carter Tallaire, one reception for six yards.

Saints Defensive Statistics: Alex France, 11 tackles, one interception; Mitchell Peterson, 11 tackles, one interception; Jared Helms, 11 tackles, one sack; Carter Tallaire, 10 tackles, one sack; Mason Gustafson, nine tackles, one fumble recovery; David LaVake, eight tackles, one interception; Kody Rickley, nine tackles; David Van- Heuvelen, six tackles; Garrett Kellan, five tackles; Drew Marshall, five tackles; Micah Davis, four tackles, one sack; Kenney Rickley, four tackles; Christian Ross, one fumble recovery.

Return to top


Click here for digital edition
2016-11-10 digital edition