Wyandotte, Southgate to Clash in Football Rivalry as Playoffs Loom for Bears
A win Friday night by Wyandotte Roosevelt locks up a share of the Downriver League title and increases its chances of hosting a playoff game.
A victory against the Titans (2-6) guarantees Roosevelt (7-1) a share of the Downriver League title, as the team enters week 9 tied with Woodhaven and Taylor Truman for first place. A win also improves Wyandotte’s chances of hosting a first-round playoff game next week.
Southgate’s disappointing 2012 campaign, which has consisted of only two wins, has been a far cry from its success during the past few seasons. From 2008-11 the Titans consistently challenged the Bears for league and district titles, creating epic Downriver football battles that players and fans on both sides will not soon forget.
Last season Wyandotte lost 21-18 at Southgate in week 9, suffering its first league loss in two years. Two weeks later the squads met in the second round of the playoffs and the host Bears captured the district title with a 28-21 victory.
Despite Anderson’s struggles this year, Roosevelt still has to deal with the rivalry factory, as both teams have traditionally played each other tough, even in seasons where the game appeared to be a mismatch.
Roosevelt head coach Ron Adams said he expects Southgate to play inspired football all night, as the Titans will want to end their season on a high note.
“Honestly I don’t think the records matter at all because it is a rivalry game,” Adams said. “There’s no reason for this not to be a very, very good game on Friday night. It has meaning on both sides of the ball, when you look at Southgate and you look at us.”
2012 Season Recap
Win or lose Friday night, Wyandotte will end the regular season with at least seven wins for the seventh consecutive year.
The Bears kicked off 2012 with a 28-14 victory at Melvindale. Quarterback Kevin Matejko threw two touchdown passes to help lead his team on opening night.
Roosevelt improved to 4-0 with lopsided wins against Taylor Kennedy, Trenton and Lincoln Park. The Bears outscored the trio by a combined 119-7 and receiver Devan Stewart caught six touchdown passes during the three-game stretch.
A week 5 battle of unbeaten teams at Taylor Truman ended with a 24-20 win for Wyandotte. Fullback and linebacker Damon Singleton helped lead the way with three touchdowns and a strong performance on defense.
The Bears couldn’t duplicate the previous week’s success and Woodhaven handed them a 64-36 defeat on the road. One bright spot for Roosevelt was that Matejko was able to throw for 358 yards and four touchdowns that night.
With an impressive rebound after the defeat a week before, Wyandotte dominated Gibraltar Carlson 35-7 at home. Stewart, and running back D’Aries Davis, each scored two touchdowns in the game.
Last week Wyandotte went on the road and beat Allen Park by a score of 27-8. Kicker Jacob Simpson made two field goals and hit all three of his extra point attempts.
Downriver League Title
A loss by both Woodhaven and Truman Friday night, and a win by Roosevelt, would give the Bears the league title outright, which would be their third straight. However, both the Cougars and Warriors are facing struggling opponents this week, so a Wyandotte victory is still likely to leave the squad with a shared title for 2012.
A win Friday increases the chances of a first-round playoff game being hosted by Wyandotte next week, as the Bears would finish the season with only one loss. Last year Roosevelt hosted Ypsilanti Lincoln in the first round.
The 2012 MHSAA playoff pairings will be announced Sunday on the Selection Sunday Show, which will air on FOX Sports Detroit at 6 p.m.