Negaunee, MI – September 2, 2021 – Negaunee Miners football defeated the Calumet Copper Kings 35-21 on Thursday night. Mark Evans and Gregg Nelson were on the call in Negaunee on Sunny 101.9.
Calumet started the game with the ball but their possession was short lived with a three-and-out right out of the gate. Negaunee waited no time to score as on their first possession Gerald Johnson threw a 43 yard bomb to Philip Nelson for a touchdown. The Copper Kings nearly had a second straight third and out with a conversion on third and one. Paul Sturos faked a hand off to the fullback Alan Bjorn and took himself to the end zone to tie the game up 7-7.
End of 1st: Negaunee Miners 7, Calumet Copper Kings 7
To start the second quarter Negaunee had a broken play and couldn’t convert on third-and-nine, giving the ball back to Calumet. Calumet fumbled giving the Miners the football right back, and Negaunee converted a fourth down with a catch from Philip Nelson at Calumet’s 10. Gerald Johnson kept the ball for himself, rushing into the end zone to take the 14-7 lead. Paul Sturos of the Copper Kings rolled right and gunned it to his top receiver Amar Peterson to keep the drive moving. The drive came to end off a pass picked off by Brenten Belanger at Negaunee’s 20 yard line. Negaunee went into halftime leading 14-7.
Halftime: Negaunee Miners 14, Calumet Copper Kings 7
To start the second half, Easton Palomaki had a big rush moving the Miners all the way down to Calumet’s 14 yard line. Gerald Johnson finished the drive off with his second rushing touchdown of the game giving the Miners the 21-7 lead. Calumet answered right away off of a Kip Kangas 85 yard rush touchdown trimming the lead down to 21-14.
The third quarter got even better with a 95 yard passing touchdown to Negaunee’s Philip Nelson giving Negaunee not only the momentum but the 28-14 lead. The Copper Kings had a near turnover but the drive was successful after a Paul Sturos to Nolan Sturos touchdown, cutting the Miners’ lead back down to seven. Negaunee finished the third quarter strong with a pass to Philip Nelson getting the Miners down to Calumets 11 yard line.
End of 3rd: Negaunee Miners 28, Calumet Copper Kings 21
Nico Lukarinen continued the drive with a first down, giving Negaunee the first and goal.
Gerald Johnson got his third rushing touchdown of the game, once again ballooning the Miners lead back to two touchdowns. Calumet converted on third and got the first down to keep the comeback alive. Easton Palomaki sacked Sturos for an 8 yard loss leading to a fourth down. The copper Kings couldn’t convert, giving Negaunee the ball back.
Negaunee got a first down, essentially sealing the game for the Miners. Calumet did eventually get the ball back and rapidly moved the chains to comeback but with 15 seconds left, they turned it over on downs giving Negaunee the win.
Final Score: Negaunee Miners 35, Calumet Copper Kings 21
NEXT GAME: Negaunee Miners football plays the Hancock Bulldogs on Friday, September 10th at 7 P.M. Mark Evans and Gregg Nelson will have the call from Hancock at 6:30 P.M. for the Elder Agency Pre-Game Show.