On Thursday October 17, 2019 the Goodrich Martians traveled to Fenton in a battle for a Metro League Title, in the first year they are a member of the conference and first time facing the Tigers. Despite cold temperatures and a lengthy delay to start the game, the Martians came out on fire. A common theme all year, the defense held to start and gave the offense great field position. Staying on the ground for 6 straight plays the Martian offensive line led the charge and Clayton Burnett scored from 6-yards away. Colton Leedom secured an interception on the next series, and the offense went back to work. A 9-yard run on a 4th down conversion by Burnett was then rewarded with a 3-yard Burnett TD scamper, and the guests were wearing out there welcome already when a Leedom to Joey Belanger two-point conversion made the score 14-0. Never giving up, the Tigers used a big 75-yard TD strike and an ensuing turnover drive that resulted in a 2nd straight touchdown to tie the score at 14-14 mid way through the 2nd quarter. Needing a spark and to regain momentum, Freshman Ayden McCracken took the kickoff 33 yards down the sideline in a blur and the Martians were back in business. Leedom was able to hookup with Caden Kolanowski on a 13-yard TD pass and a halftime lead stood at 20-14.
In what will go down as the statement drive of the game, and possibly the season, the Martian offense used nearly 9 minutes of the clock and 16 plays to cover 80 yards at the start of 3rd Quarter. The play many will talk about, was Burnett keeping his balance on 4th and 1 and lunging for the critical 1st down to keep the drive alive. In a game of inches, Leedom covered the final few and pushed into the end zone for a commanding 26-14 lead. The final three drives for Fenton all ended in turnover on downs as the Martian defense held them on a goal line stand and a few desperate drives late. The scoring was capped with a 46-yard strike off the arm of Leedom to a speeding Kaden Flores down the visitors sideline and with a succesful PAT, the final score would be 33-14.
By land and by air the Martian offense rolled to 348 yards of Total Offense. Leedom finished passing 6/12 for 137 yards and 2 Tds, and the short TD keeper. Burnett carried the ball an incredible 32 times for 173 yards and 2 Tds. Kolanowski snagged 2 passes for 54 yards and a score. Flores had the 46 yard score and Belanger the 2pt Conversion catch.
On the defensive side of the ball the Tigers managed 141 yards with half coming on the one busted play. Burnett had 9 tackles, and Cameron Macklem deflected multiple passes along with his 8 tackles. Leedom had the one interception. Freshman Brady Benson and Zack Lagat led a great group effort on the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. The Tigers versatile QB never felt comfortable in the pocket. In what will certainly be a rivalry in the coming years, the Martians struck first and took a 7th straight victory in the process.
UP NEXT: The final game of the season takes the Martians (7-1) on the Road to take on Holly.