The Menominee Maroons are one victory away from winning their first Football State Championship in six years. In order to capture the Division 5 crown, the Maroons will have to take down a team that has had their number in recent years.
The Grand Rapids West Catholic Falcons will be rearing and ready for the challenge come Saturday afternoon. Menominee had to win thirteen straight games just to get another crack at their recent rival. The Falcons have ended the Maroons’ season not once, not twice, but each of the last three years – either in regional play or in the State Semifinals.
Last year at the Superior Dome, West Catholic scored a go-ahead touchdown with under a minute left, winning the Semifinal contest by just a field goal – 20 to 17.
It was a tough pill to swallow for Menominee, but it’s a loss the Maroons won’t soon forget.
“Our kids had some bad memories last year playing West Catholic here, losing by a field goal,” Menominee Head Coach Joe Noha said. “Without a doubt, we want to get down to Ford Field and play well and represent the U.P. well from our community in Menominee. They’ve supported us all along our travel here. Hopefully, things will go well.”
“We’ve been waiting for it all year,” remarked Maroons Running Back James Brown. “I still remember most of the game about a year ago at this dome, actually. It’s been our desire all offseason to get this, and now we finally got the chance to do it. It’s really a great feeling.”
“We’ve always kept our eye on them [West Catholic],” Maroons Running Back Justin Brilinski said. “Everybody on the team’s always watching them throughout the season to see how they were doing, so I guess we’re a little prepared for them already. We’re ready.”
Menominee won their last State Title back in 2007. They defeated Jackson Lumen Christi at Ford Field, 21 to 7. To get back to the Championship Game that year, Menominee defeated Grand Rapids West Catholic, 41 to 20 in the State Semifinals.
Kickoff between the Maroons and Falcons is set for 4:30 p.m. eastern time on Saturday. The game will be carried live on Fox Sports Detroit.