SHELBY — Only two teams have beaten Shelby this season.
And the Tigers outlasted them both in the playoffs.
Shelby's defense came up with timely — and big — turnovers in a 26-0 Division 6 district championship win over Glen Lake (9-2) Friday that moves the Tigers (9-2) into the third round of the playoffs for the first time in school history.
"I commend Jack Schugars (former Muskegon Oakridge coach) and Pat Collins (Montague) and those guys that have won state titles multiple times," Shelby coach Lorenzo Rodriguez said. "I understand right now — and I haven't got there yet — the amount of pieces of the puzzle that have to fall together for this to happen. You've got to have community support and it's got to be positive. The parents have to be on the same page — your kids, your staff, have a great game plan. You just take your hat off to those guys that have done it more than once. I'd give anything to do it once."
Shelby's only other playoff win came in 2001 over Shepherd before the Tigers defeated Kalkaska 42-21 last week.
Shelby struggled to move the ball consistently against Glen Lake's defense, putting together only two drives of more than 5 plays — both in the first half and both resulting in TDs.
Spencer Peters tossed a 15-yard scoring pass to Brody Lee on the second-quarter's first play to complete an eight-play, 55-yard drive and Peters found Nathan Lentz for a 2-yard TD pass to finish an 11-play, 62-yard drive with 41 ticks left in the first half.
"Early, we were able to throw the ball with some success against their aggressive defense," Rodriguez said. "Any time you run against a 4-4 (defense), they're a pressure defense and they're going to bring stunts and pinches."
The Tigers attacked the middle of the field over the linebackers to slow down Glen Lake's rush.
Those two passing scores were sandwiched around an Austin Porter 39-yard fumble return for a touchdown after Ben Schroeder blindsided Lakers quarterback Carter Lee.
"That was one of the plays that really started to turn the momentum to our side," Rodriguez said. "The bounces started going our way. That scoop-and-score — he's been around the ball all year and he's had multiple scoop-and-scores. He seems to be in the right place at the right time all the time."
"You pick up a fumble and return it for a touchdown," Glen Lake coach Jerry Angers said. "That's how we've played all year. We've done those things and gotten those breaks. We didn't get those done, they did and the rest is history."
The Tigers' seven other drives were all five plays or less, including five three-and-outs.
Shelby finished with 214 net yards to the Lakers' 240.
"I thought we played with them," Angers said. "To be honest "¦ we're better than they are. We just didn't make the plays when we needed to. We knew we had to play perfect or close to perfect and we didn't, but that's part of the game."
Shelby added a late 19-yard touchdown pass from Peters to Lee with 1:35 left.
Mike O'Brien led the Laker defense with 12 tackles, and Thomas Waning and Travis Wiltjer each had eight. Elliott Bregni added a sack. Waning also picked off Peters on a two-point conversion attempt after a bad snap.
Lee threw 28 times for 159 yards, with Waning hauling in 62 yards receiving, Curtis Bunek 41 and O'Brien 36. Dale Pleva ran for 41 yards and Anthony Czapek 31 as the team played without leading rusher Trevor Apsey, who broke his leg in the season finale against North Muskegon.
"The kids stepped up all year," Angers said. "They stepped up after he got hurt."
Glen Lake started off the second half with an impressive 12-play drive, but that ended when a handoff exchange was fumbled at the Shelby 15. Three other drives ended in interceptions.
"As a whole, we made too many mistakes," Angers said, attributing some of those to coaching. "And in the playoffs, you can't do that — especially when you get into the second round."
SHELBY — Only two teams have beaten Shelby this season.
Prep Sports Scoreboard: 04/24/2014
A roundup of prep sports results from across northern Michigan:Continued ...
Prep Roundup: Titans sweep Gaylord in BNC opener
From staff reports TRAVERSE CITY -- Paul Soma and Chase Cavric pitched Traverse City West to a 2-1 and 6-3 Big North Conference sweep of Gaylord on Wednesday that opened league play. Soma tossed a three-hit complete game in the opener, striking out fContinued ...
Shays reflect on Keflezighi's 'stellar race' in Boston Marathon
Soon after Meb Keflezighi won Monday's Boston Marathon, Stephan Shay sent out a congratulatory note to his friend. "Meb! Unbelievably stellar race!" he tweeted. Just below that post was a 2004 picture showing Stephan, his older brother Ryan, KeflezigContinued ...
Traverse City Alliance to open new rugby field on Friday
TRAVERSE CITY -- Expect to see a little extra energy when Christian Gallagher and the rest of the TC Alliance rugby team take the field on Friday to face Grand Rapids Catholic Central. Not only will it be the Alliance's home opener, but it also willContinued ...
Sports in Brief: 04/24/2014
Kids free fishing event canceled; Longboarding event coming to Onekama; 3 area shooters honored by BCAM.Continued ...
Track Roundup: West's Roush sets school record
From staff reports GAYLORD -- Tommy Roush set another school record as Traverse City West knocked off Big North Conference foes Cadillac and Gaylord in a double dual meet. West defeated Cadillac 95.5-76.5 and Gaylord 97-60. Roush -- who broke the shoContinued ...
- Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Lake overcomes cramps to finish Boston
Cramps didn’t stop Gary Lake from finishing his final Boston Marathon. The 67-year-old from Honor fought through a painful final eight miles to finish in just over five hours.Continued ...
Prep Sports Roundup: Late rallies propel Christian to sweep
Jacob Rorick squeezed in Cam Beemer with the game-winning run in the bottom of the sixth as Traverse City Christian edged McBain Northern Michigan Christian 7-6 in the first of two games. (Plus more)Continued ...
- Today in Sports: 04/23/2014
- Tuesday, April 22, 2014
Kiel records top Boston time out of area runners
Kyle Kiel’s Boston Marathon time was over 35 minutes improved from last year’s. Gary Lake’s was infinitely better.Continued ...
Prep Sports Roundup: TCW 11th; Scott ties for 1st
Alex Scott shot a 74 to tie for first overall as he led the Traverse City West boys golf team to an 11th-place finish Monday at the East Lansing Invitational at Walnut Hills. (Plus more)Continued ...
Sports in Brief: TC Roller Derby teams split
The teams of Traverse City Roller Derby participated as part of a tripl header of roller derby action at Kellogg Arena in Battle Creek on Saturday. (Plus more)Continued ...
College Notes: Otwell wins 1,500 meters at Jesse Owens Classic
Michigan State redshirt senior Julia Otwell (Traverse City Central) won the 1,500-meter run Friday in the Jesse Owens Track Classic at Ohio State. (Plus more)Continued ...
- Today in Sports: 04/22/2014
- Monday, April 21, 2014
Dennis Chase: Lions should take guesswork out of draft
With the NFL draft approaching, Detroit’s been teasing its long-suffering fan base by bringing in defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, receiver Sammy Watkins and outside linebacker Khalil Mack for meet-and-greets.Continued ...
Bowling Scores: 04/21/2014
Local bowling scores from Lucky Jack's:Continued ...
- Today in Sports: 04/21/2014
- Sunday, April 20, 2014
Unbeaten Titans roll past Central, 6-1
Trailing 1-0 early, the Titans responded with six unanswered goals over the final 58 minutes to beat crosstown rival Traverse City Central 6-1 in a Big North Conference soccer match at the Coast Guard field.Continued ...
Spanski to sign with Detroit Mercy
Brett Spanski can make a little history and be a trailblazer at the same time Wednesday.Continued ...
Prep Sports Roundup: TC Thunder romps at Thirlby Field
The Traverse City Thunder opened the lacrosse season Saturday with an 11-1 win over Muskegon Reeths-Puffer and a 12-3 decision over Sault Ste, Marie. (Plus more)Continued ...
- Saturday, April 19, 2014
Trojans dominate track invitational
From staff reports MUSKEGON -- It was a good Friday for Traverse City Central sophomore Anthony Berry. Berry was part of three records as the Trojans easily won the 15-team Rocket Invitational at Muskegon Reeths-Puffer with 228.5 points. "No questionContinued ...
Traverse City Hounds rally to beat Jersey Shore, 6-3
LAS VEGAS -- Traverse City closed out the UHU national tournament with a flurry, rallying with five third-period goals to knock off the Jersey Shore Wildcats 6-3. Things didn't look as rosy in the first two periods. The Hounds did take a 1-0 lead onContinued ...
- Friday, April 18, 2014
Hounds on verge of elimination in Las Vegas
LAS VEGAS -- Traverse City's penalty killing unit wasn't its usual self Thursday, allowing three power-play goals in a 6-2 UHU national tournament loss to the Soo Firehawks. In the regular season, the Hounds' penalty killers gave up a net three goalsContinued ...
Bob Gwizdz: Perfect day on the Manistee River
WELLSTON -- Tired of waiting for the St. Joseph River to clear up -- and having postponed our annual St. Patrick's Day (or thereabouts) steelhead sojourn already into April -- Jim Romine made the call: We were going to the Manistee River instead. AndContinued ...
DNR seeks solution to Vasa dispute
TRAVERSE CITY -- Fat tire bikers and cross country skiers are hoping for some sort of resolution to a brewing controversy on April 28. The two user groups have struggled to coexist in the first year since TART opened the Vasa trail to fat bikes as aContinued ...
- Prep Sports Scoreboard: 04/24/2014