After two missed games, gridders get back to work

Roosevelt quarterback Jalen Pitchford

Hank Minckiewicz

Some positive Covid-19 tests blew a two-game hole into the already-shortened regular-season schedule for the Roosevelt football team, but the Bears and their coaches hope it hasn’t blown a hole in the momentum they had built through the first three games.

The Bears opened the season with a huge 17-7 win over defending Downriver League champion Woodhaven. It was Woodhaven’s first league loss in 15 games, dating back to 2018.

It was the defense that led the way that night and the defense continued to do the heavy lifting as the Bears then recorded back-to-back shutouts, bouncing Lincoln Park 38-0 and Taylor 20-0. 

“I still don’t think we’ve played our best game offensively,” said coach Ron Adams, “but the defense has really done a great job. Against Taylor, the defense was awesome.”

The Bears held the Griffins to minus-30 total yards. The defenders have also scored three times this year.

Linebacker Logan McGraw has been a defensive weapon for the Bears so far this season. “He is a stud,” said Adams.

But his job has been made easier by a defensive line that has really gotten after people.

“Our line is not real big, but they can really move,” Adams said. “They are quick and athletic and very disciplined. They clear the way for McGraw to go and make tackles.”

Some of the other defensive players Adams singled out were Richard Clark, Lu Peterson and defensive back Camari Garrison

In the win over Woodhaven, the Bears had just 126 total yards, but they used them well. McGraw scored on a short run from his fullback position, Pat Schilk made a 33-yard field goal and the defense added another score.

In the rout of Lincoln Park, quarterback Jalen Pitchford passed for 151 yards and two scores and Pitchford and McGraw scored rushing touchdowns. Clark and Anthony Peterson were on the receiving end of Pitchford’s TD passes. Schilk chipped in with a 28-year field goal and five PATS and the defense again added a score. 

Against Taylor, Wyandotte’s 20 points came on a seven-yard pass from Pitchford to Josh Hudson, a run by Pitchford and a scoop-and-score fumble recovery by Garrison.

The Covid cases cost the Bears games against Allen Park and Southgate and they got back into action against 4-1 Carlson on Oct. 24. The results of that game were not available by the paper’s deadline.

The MHSAA state playoffs start on Oct. 30 with first-round distinct games. The Bears are in an eight-team district filled with unfamiliar faces. Grouped with Roosevelt are: Detroit Renaissance, Detroit U-D Jesuit, Ferndale, Grosse Pointe North, Grosse Pointe South, Lincoln Park and Oak Park.

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