Breaking down Division 3 state semifinal rematch in between Chelsea and River Rouge
If there’s a match from in 2015’s state semifinals that deserves a rematch it’s River Rouge vs. Chelsea.
The two groups are squaring off in the Department 3 semifinal video game this weekend with a journey to Ford Field on the line when again.
Last year, Rouge edged upset-minded Chelsea 14-7 and went on to defeat Muskegon to declare the state championship.
Now, the 2 groups will get together with whatever on the line in a contest in between 2 of the very best teams in the state despite division.
Here is a breakdown of the matchup.
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Playoff wins: Beat Thurston 40-0, beat South Lyon East 49-44, beat Sibling Rice 23-0, beat Flint Kearsley 38-22.
Chelsea was an underdog heading into last year’s semifinal after moving up from Department 4 and facing a River Rouge team that had rolled past nearly every opponent leading up to the video game.
However the Bulldogs showed everybody incorrect and even led Rouge 7-0 in the fourth quarter before the Panthers scored 14 unanswered points to escape with the win.
This season, the two teams have actually been on a collision course when again and both were playing their finest football before the season was postponed in mid-November.
After the seven-week hiatus, both squads chose up where they ended last weekend with outstanding wins to declare local champions and set up the rematch.
Rouge has controlled in all of its victories this year, with their only imperfection coming to a stacked East Lansing group in Week 2.
The Panthers won their first-ever state title last season after squeaking previous Chelsea and is looking for a second-straight state final look.
They’re led by senior quarterback and Western Michigan signee Mareyohn Hrabowski, who recorded 261 overall lawns of offense and accounted for 3 TDs in Rouge’s 33-30 win over Detroit King last week.
Rouge is packed with skill outside of Hrabowski with first-team all-staters Devonte Miles and Armorion Smith and second-team all-state players Jalen Johnson and Pius Odjugo.
Chelsea has been on a mission all season long, travelling past most of its challengers also to get back to their third-straight state semifinal video game, second in Department 3.
The Bulldogs are a versatile team that has an explosive and balanced offense and a strong defense, which will make this year’s game all the more interesting.
First-team all-state receiver Joe Taylor will be the leading priority for Rouge’s defense as he has had his method with defenses throughout the season.
However Taylor won’t be the only player on Rouge’s scouting report as the Bulldogs have an all-state quality quarterback in Griffen Murphy and a second-team all-state running back in Trent Hill.
On defense, the Bulldogs also have playmakers that will be key if they are going to proceed to the state title video game.
All-state respectable mention gamers Corbin Steele and Carson Gray, along with players like Chase Kemp, Logan Vaughn and Mitchell Sumner will be hired to stop an efficient Rouge offense.
This will be the 4th match in between the two programs with Rouge holding a 2-1 edge, with Chelsea’s win visiting way of surrender in 2016.
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