Many thought that Milford’s matchup at Plymouth would result in a tight game between two state playoff teams from last season, but any thoughts of that notion were eradicated early as the Wildcats ran wild on the Mavericks, 45-0, on Thursday, Aug. 30.
After a strong opening week victory over Flushing, the Mavs were looking to make a statement against a Plymouth team that had won the Kensington Lakes Activities Association (KLAA) Kensington Conference title last season.
But, Plymouth would show why it could earn back-to-back titles this season.
After Milford (1-1) punted on its first drive, Plymouth’s Matt Janke returned the ball 68 yards to the Milford 6-yard line. Two plays later, quarterback Jamarl Eiland threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Jared Davis for the Wildcats’ first score.
After the Mavs punted on their second drive, Plymouth (2-0) marched 59 yards down the field before Stefan Turrintine scored on a 1-yard touchdown run.
On its third drive, Milford appeared to be showing signs of life as they started on their own 20 and drove to midfield.
But, an Alex Larson pass bounced off the chest of Thomas Woodrow as he was hit and Nate Emminger intercepted the ball. He initially returned it for a touchdown, but was called back due to a Plymouth penalty.
Nevertheless, Turrintine would score his second touchdown on a 36-yard run to put the Wildcats up 21-0.
After a 43-yard field goal by Brenton Zuzo put the Wildcats up 24-0, Derrick Rossell showed some fancy footwork as he rushed 84 yards down the sideline and across the goal line for a 31-0 Plymouth lead.
The only drive Plymouth didn’t score on in the first half was when Eiland took a knee to send the teams into the locker room for halftime.
The Wildcats kept their foot on the gas pedal in the third quarter, as Eiland scored on a 37-yard touchdown run on Plymouth’s first play from scrimmage.
Then on Milford’s first drive of the third, Larson threw his second interception to Emminger, who returned it 20-yards for a touchdown and this time it counted.
From there, it was just a matter of the running clock finally expiring.
Plymouth outgained the Mavs with 234 rushing yards while Milford had 88.
Larson completed 6-of-16 passes for 50 yards and only had seven rushing yards for Milford, while Daniel Wallace was held to only 18 yards.
David Onofrio led Milford with 59 yards rushing.
Rossell finished with 105 yards rushing for Plymouth while Eiland rushed for 71 yards.
Turrintine finished with 38 yards while also stepping up on defense with 7.5 total tackles.
Mike Kennedy also had seven total tackles for the Wildcats.
Milford must now lick its wounds as it gets set to host Grand Blanc, the defending KLAA Lakes Conference champion, on Friday, Sept. 7 to open KLAA West Division play.