Madison Heights Madison quarter back Matthew Crews (7) runs around left end as Montrose’s Seth Rowe (52) pursues during the fourth quarter of the MHSAA Division 6 Regional game played on Friday Nov. 15, 2013 at Montrose Hill-McCloy High School. M.H. Madison lost the game 42-13. (For The Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
FOOTBALL: Madison’s unbeaten season comes to an end at Montrose Hill-McCloy, 42-13
Daviyon Jones (2) of Madison Heights Madison dives to tackle Montrose quarterback Riley Warren (4) during the second quarter of the MHSAA Division 6 Regional game played on Friday Nov. 15, 2013 at Montrose Hill McCloy-High School. The Eagles lost to the Rams 42-13. (For The Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
Madison Heights Madison running back Chris Gault (3) is met in the hole by Montrose’s Tyler Doyle (5) during the second quarter of the MHSAA Division 6 Regional game played on Friday Nov. 15, 2013 at Montrose Hill-McCloy High School. M.H. Madison lost the game 42-13. (For The Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
Daviyon Jones (2) of Madison Heights Madison makes a catch in front of Alex Elasivich (41) during the third quarter of the MHSAA Division 6 Regional game played on Friday Nov. 15, 2013 at Montrose Hill McCloy-High School. The Eagles lost to the Rams 42-13. (For The Oakland Press/KEN SWART)
MONTROSE – Madison Heights Madison could not stop the big play and host Montrose Hill-McCloy used three touchdown runs from Tyler Doyle and two from Alex Elasivich to defeat the Eagles 42-13 in a Division 6 quarterfinal game at Bob Hayes Field on Friday.
The Rams (12-0) advance to the Division 6 semifinals against the winner of Saturday’s Ithaca-Negaunee contest. Ithaca is the 3-time defending state champion.
Madison ended its season at 11-1.
“Tonight we lost because we didn’t play our game,” Madison coach Drake Wilkins said Friday. “I told them ‘we played good for 11 weeks,’ and do not let this one game tarnish what kind of season they had.”
Wilkins, now 7-6 in playoff games in his sixth season at the helm, said his players “must take this loss like a man.”
“I’ve enjoyed the ride this season,” Wilkins said. “Tonight’s loss had as much to do with what we didn’t do as what they did.”
Montrose 18th year coach Dennis Reinhart called the sound victory on Friday “near perfect.”
“Outside a couple of turnovers we had they could not stop our offense and our defense held them to 7 points – 13 points with our second string in there – near perfect,” Reinhart said Friday.
It was a running clock in the third quarter when Doyle scored from 1-yard out to give the Rams a clock-running 42-7 lead with 5:27 left. Montrose came into the game averaging 43.5 points.
Matthew Crews scored on a 5-yard quarterback keeper with 49 second left to make it 42-13.
“Wed didn’t have an answer for No. 5 (Doyle),” Wilkins said. “And their No. 12 (Malik Taylor) and No. 41 (Elasivich) made big plays for them.”
The ‘black and red’ Rams led 35-7 at halftime after Elasivich returned a Crews interception 35 yards with just 9 seconds left before the intermission.
Meanwhile, Doyle, a 6-foot-1, 210-pound back, scampered in from 5 yards out with 41 seconds left in the half to give the Rams a commanding 28-7 advantage.
The Eagles previously recovered a fumble in the end zone with 6:50 left to give Madison new life. But a promising drive stalled at the Rams 35 with 2:53 left in the half when Crews threw back-to-back incompletions.
Madison, who allowed just 7.4 points a game this season, tailed 21-0 when Jaylin Golson hauled in a 41-yard pass from Crews midway through the second quarter to provide some much needed offense.
Crews then found junior back Juan Johnson on a 28-yard scoring pass with 8:41 left before halftime to shave the lead to 21-7.
“We had opportunities in the first half,” Wilkins said.
It was 21-0 after the ‘big play’ Rams struck again. Elasivich, a junior, galloped for a 59-yard gain to set up his own 6-yard TD run at 11:20 of the second quarter.
The Eagles simply could not stop the Rams big play offense in the first half.
“There’s something about a small city team coming up north to play these little communities,” Wilkins said. “We play in front of a couple hundred people and we come up here and they go thousands of people in the stands.”
Montrose Hill-McCloy led 14-0 after the first quarter when Riley Warren found Malik Taylor on a 79-yard scoring hook-up to stun the Madison faithful who traveled over an hour north for the game.
Montrose, who has lost the last three years in the playoffs to eventual state champion Ithaca, led 7-0 after starting near midfield on their first possession of the night. Doyle carried the load for 28 yards and two first downs to get the Rams rocking to their first score.
Doyle finished a 51-yard drive with a 4-yard TD run off the tackle to give the Rams a 7-0 lead at 7:21 of the first quarter.
On Madison’s second possession of the night, Johnson reeled off a 27-yard run to get the Eagles into Rams territory for the first time. Back-to-back runs by the hard-charging Johnson resulted in a first down to the Rams 34.
The purple and white clad Eagles, who averaged 39.3 points a game on offense, faced a fourth down and two yards at the 25 for Wilkins first big play call of the night.
And Crews didn’t disappoint connecting with senior Kyle Baldwin on a 15-yard pass – his first completion of the night – to get the Eagles down to the 11.
But the host Rams held, and Madison senior kicker Sam Esho missed a 30-yard field goal attempt wide right to keep the Eagles scoreless.
“For the seniors – this is going to hurt,” Wilkins said. “But we weren’t supposed to be here. And now that we made it here, I think people will be surprised by the score. We took a beating, but it was a good year.”
On the Eagles’ first possession, Crews tossed back-to-back incomplete passes, and a third pass went for minus 4 yards before the Eagles were forced to punt.
“We had the team to go to Ford Field,” Madison junior Daviyon Jones said, tears flowing down his cheeks. “It hurts for the seniors.”