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Livonia Churchill dismantles Milford 59-21 in opening game
By: Kyle Mills (@generalmills101)
Livonia Churchill opened the year with a convincing 59-21 rout over Milford in a game that was not really as close as the score indicates.
Led by EMU commit Brian Alsobrooks, who is the team’s starting quarterback, kicker and punter, the Chargers used a fast-paced attack to seemingly knock out the Mavs before the crowd even was in their seats.
Senior Tim Dulin started off the action by catching an 18-yard pass from Alsobrooks followed by a beautiful 40-yard bomb that hit the streaking receiver in stride in the end zone less than 2 minutes into the game.
When Churchill was able to get the ball back with 6:27 left in the first quarter, they proceeded to score on 7 straight possessions, which left the hometown Milford fans in shock and awe.
Alsobrooks was in total control as he threw a dime 35-yard wheel route to RB Paul Romain for his second touchdown. He finished his TD throwing barrage by hitting Dulin on an 8-yard curl, which was a bullet high enough that only the 6’4 receiver could pull down.
The first quarter ended and by the time the dust had settled the Churchill offense had put up 39 straight points to take a dominating lead into the rest of the game.
As Chief Keef says in his first song out of prision, “Now it’s over, now it’s over, it’s over.” It really was over as CHS would cruise the rest of the game.
Senior RB’s Paul Romain and Armonde Yetts had great performances on the ground as well for the Chargers, each finding huge lanes to run through. Romain showed off his elusiveness by wiggling his way out of would-be tacklers arms almost every time he had the ball. Both RB’s also showed the ability to lower their shoulders and punish defenders. Romain added 2 touchdowns on the ground while Yetts chipped in with 1.
The offensive line was dominant for the entire first half led by Miami (OH) commit Matt Skibinski who anchors the LT position. He, along with D1 prospect Nick Davis, protected Alsobrooks’ blind side as well as paved the way for the running game. Seemingly each and every play, Skibinski and Davis were pancaking a helpless defensive lineman or linebacker.
“We knew this was a team we could physically beat on so we went into the game intending to take advantage of that and end it early. Brian threw the ball great behind us, the receivers all got open, and our backs ran the ball hard all night,” said the 6’5 270 pound Skibinski.
The first-team defense was just as stout for the Chargers, pitching a shutout the first half. Seniors Steve Szymanski and Aaron Kerr looked like they had spent the entire off-season in the weight room, as they were both all over the field tonight. Szymanski came up from his SS spot to make 9 tackles and laid hard hits several times throughout the night. He, along with Kerr, showed great chase down instincts and defensive awareness to read and react to help shut down the Mavs offense.
Kerr was especially impressive as he finished the game with 7 total tackles with 2 of them being for loss of yards. He was a big reason why Milford had a total of 1 first down against the first-team defense.
Last season, Churchill’s secondary was exposed each and every game, but that looks like it may change this year. Senior Shakur Lockett was the definition of lockdown the entire game. He had 4 pass breakups and also contributed with 3 tackles, and a 65 yard return, as well as recovering a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown.
By the time it was halftime, Churchill held a commanding 52-0 lead. Yes, everything mentioned above happened before halftime.
“The first half was amazing, perfect execution,” said 6’3 295 pound OG Nick Davis.
Give the Mavs credit though, as they were able to fight back and push the ball down the field several times for scores in the second half.
Milford Junior QB Josh Johnston made his varsity debut and showed a strong arm and hit several receivers for deep throws after he got comfortable. Once he gets more games under his belt, more of his bombs will be on target.
This was not only Johnston’s first game on varsity; it was his first American football game period. After transferring from Canada this past year, he is relishing in the opportunity to even play football.
“The lights, the crowd, the atmosphere: I will remember it for the rest of my life. It was definitely an amazing experience,” said Johnston about his first ever game.
Senior RB Tyler Carrier gave the team the fight it needed and scored 2 touchdowns to keep the game respectable for Milford. He showed tough running skills and refused to be tackled after halftime.
The WR corps was led by senior playmakers Griffin Ogg and Keegan Matthews who both caught long passes in the second half for the Mavs. Ogg scored on a 45-yard reception and Matthews showed off his hands with a 50-yard grab.
LB Chad Comis had two sacks in the second half, which got the home crowd fired up as well.
Milford will look to rebound when it travels to Livonia Franklin to take on the Patriots next week.
Churchill moves on to play Brighton next game, who is coming off a solid win against Novi.
“It was a great way to start the season for our team. We team had a great all around effort tonight. We will have bigger challenges to come though,” said senior QB Brian Alsobrooks.
Coming off a win like this, look for the Chargers to be amped up all season long. If the offense can run like a well-oiled machine, the points are going to be flying on the board as the W’s continue to rack up.
“It's fantastic (to get the season started off like this), we know how good we can be and it feels great to have played to our potential. We just have to keep it up,” concluded CB Shakur Lockett.
- CHS’s Tyler Melow blocked a punt in the end zone, which was eventually recovered by CHS for a touchdown.
- CHS FS 10th grader Andrew Ward had 3 tackles in his first varsity game.
- CHS TE/DL Aaron Mager also played well, recording 3 tackles and providing excellent blocking.
- CHS LB Demarco McKinney had an interception, which he almost ran back 20 yards for a touchdown, but was stopped at the 2-yard line.
- Milford’s 1st first down did not come until their 7th possession. They finished with a total of 3 first downs in the entire first half.
- Milford did not cross the mid field until the second half.
- A running clock was in effect after Churchill took a 52-0 lead.
- CHS RB Tyler Booker added a 33-yard TD run to end the game.
- CHS QB Brian Alsobrooks showed off his kicking and punting skills in the first half. He was 7/7 on extra points, kicked a 28-yard field goal, dropped his one punt inside the 20-yard line, and kicked 7/8 kick-offs for touchbacks.
- Alsobrooks did not even attempt a pass after the first quarter.
- Alsobrooks had 3 touchdowns, but realistically should have had 7. 3 of his passes were dropped in the end zone and his rushing TD was called back on a penalty.
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