Miners Shine in First Round of MHSAA Playoffs 51-0; Round Two This Friday

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The Negaunee Miners and Inland Lakes Bulldogs on the field in the first round of the MHSAA playoffs on Sunny.FM from Negaunee, Michigan

The Negaunee Miners and Inland Lakes Bulldogs on the field in the first round of the MHSAA playoffs on Sunny.FM from Negaunee, Michigan

NEGAUNEE, MI – The Negaunee Miners came out strong last Saturday.  How strong?  Well going up 28-0 in the first quarter would fall under the category, I believe.  Tyler LaJoie set the tone early as he ran all over the Bulldog defense, scoring the game’s first touchdown on an 11-yard touchdown run.  His impressive first quarter offensively was reciprocated on the defensive side of the ball.  LaJoie intercepted a pass at the Negaunee 30-yard line and outran the entire Bulldog offense on his way to a 70-yard touchdown.  Coach Jacobson’s game plan couldn’t have been better.  The Bulldogs tried to stack the box to try and slow down LaJoie, but that only led to two touchdown passes to Zane Radloff (54-yards) & Tyler Jandron (15-yards).  Inland Lakes’ defensive plan was more than exposed when a very minor fake to LaJoie resulted in all eleven Bulldogs collapsing on him, leaving Zane Radloff waving his arms 35-yards down field.  The touchdown couldn’t have been easier if Inland Lakes had kept their defense on the sideline.

Now you’ve most likely read the title, so you know the defense was the real showstopper on Saturday.  Inland Lakes showed minimal signs of offensive prowess, and when it did get the ball rolling, a crucial penalty or a negative play would intervene.  The Bulldogs struggled all game long with penalties as they tried (unsuccessfully) to neutralize the Miner pass rush.  That combined with “extracurricular activities” marred just about every drive the Bulldogs tried to put together.  I have to give Negaunee’s defense a lot of credit though, as the defensive line attacked the Bulldog’s line and flew to whomever had the ball for Inland Lakes.

The Negaunee Miners will now play the Boyne City Ramblers this Friday night in the SUPERIOR DOME.  The game will take place at 7:00pm and sure looks to be a good one.  The Ramblers finished the regular season with a record of 7-2 and are coming off of a round one victory over Elk Rapids.  The added dynamic of playing on turf for the first time this season will be something to watch out for the Miners.  Injuries occur at a more frequent rate on turf, especially if you’re not used to playing on it.  Surely this works to a Tyler LaJoie’s favor, giving him some extra speed, but that will remain to be seen.

Be sure to tune in this Friday at 7:00pm as the Negaunee Miners will play the Boyne City Ramblers at the Superior Dome in Marquette.  My partner Jesse Anderson & myself will have the call, and you can catch it LIVE, here on our website Sunny.FM or on the radio at FM 101.9.  Pre-game starts at 6:30, and Kickoff is at 7.  GO MINERS!

-Carl Leander Johnson

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