In order to properly write up the Pellston vs. Inland Lakes game, it would seem fitting to go back four years. As a coaching staff, we had just started our first year of coaching together. We only had one of us who had any background in 8-player football. So, after Coach Crawford brought us up to speed on the nuances of the game, we began the season. That year, we started out using four freshmen. The Hornets went 1-8 with the only win coming in week 9 with a win over Charlton Heston. In that game, the Hornets put up a school record for most points, 84, scored in a single game. That 2017 season featured Chase Zink starting at quarterback, Ian Reimann and Zander Overholt on the offensive line, and David Jamroz as a backup running back and starting cornerback. These young men made up the nucleus of what would be the most dominating and successful football program in school history. With the addition of seniors Jerrome Foth and Keith Coffell, the Hornets, for the second year in a row, made the playoffs. The Hornets’ week one playoff win over Brimley set the stage for a matchup with soon to be Ski Valley rival, the Inland Lakes Bulldogs. The Hornets entered the game with a 7-0 record while the Bulldogs were 6-1.
On an unseasonably warm Friday night at Sam McClutchey field, it was time to get the game underway. After one quarter of play, neither team was able to break through the other’s defense. So, the score was 0-0. In the second quarter David Jamroz found the endzone on a 55-yard kick return touchdown. The score was tied at six a piece. With 5:10 left in the second quarter, Pellston’s Nate Chiles took the handoff from Isaiah Crawford and took it 45 yards for a Pellston touchdown. After one half of football, the Hornets were down 20-12. Pellston’s final score came when Jamroz ran it in from 5 yards out. Final score: Pellston 18, Inland Lakes 46.
Offensively, the Hornets were led by junior Nate Chiles who rushed for 103 yards, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception. David Jamroz finished the evening with 103 all-purpose yards and 2 touchdowns.
Defensively, the Hornets were led by senior Chase Zink who had 8 solo tackles and 5 assists. Freshman Kenny Crawford had 7 solo tackles and 2 assists. Garrett Cameron had 7 solo tackles, 3 assists, and 1 interception. Isaiah Crawford had 5 tackles and 1 interception. Zander Overhold had 5 tackles. Keith Coffell had 3 tackles and 1 fumble recovery. Jerrome Foth had 2 tackles and 1 assist. Ian Reimann ended the evening with 5 tackles, 3 assists, and 1 reception for 25 yards.
For the seniors who have played their final football play as a Hornet, the tradition towards excellence will carry on forever. This departing senior class has amassed 20 wins over the four years, 114 touchdowns over the last two years, a first-place finish atop of the Ski Valley, made the playoffs two years in a row, and this year won a playoff game for the first time in school history. So, a final farewell to Chase, Dave, Jerrome, Ian, Keith, and Zander. Thank you for leaving the football program in a better place than it ever has been before.
– Coach Jack Carter