GVSU Throttles Michigan Tech, 52-6

The Lakers took it straight to the Huskies on Saturday night, as Grand Valley scored touchdowns on their first four possessions, and came away with points on seven of their first eight possessions of the game, resulting in a 45-0 halftime lead.

The Lakers took it straight to the Huskies on Saturday night, as Grand Valley scored touchdowns on their first four possessions, and came away with points on seven of their first eight possessions of the game, resulting in a 45-0 halftime lead.

Quarterback Brad Iciek was named the GLIAC Offensive Player of the Week despite only throwing 10 passes in the game. However, those 10 passes were very efficient, as Iciek went 9-for-10, hitting five different receivers, for 190 yards and four touchdowns before getting pulled with over nine minutes remaining in the second quarter.

Smolen got the game going quickly, returning the opening kickoff 31 yards to Michigan Tech territory, and five run plays later, redshirt freshman Greg Gay continued his breakout season with a two-yard touchdown run.

The Huskies were forced to punt after their first possession, and that in itself was a bad idea, as P.T. Gates took the kick and returned it 21 yards. Despite two sacks on the ensuing drive, Iciek had his first touchdown pass of the day when he found go-to receiver Jonn Mathews for a 32-yard strike to make it a 14-0 game.

Michigan Tech got the ball back again, and ran into the buzzsaw known as Brad Howard, as he forced a Phil Milbrath fumble on their third play of the drive, recovered by Danny Richard. Grand Valley made them pay again, going up 21-0 after a Smolen nine-yard run and a Mathews 27-yard touchdown catch.

After another Huskie punt, Iciek went to the air with four straight passes to four different receivers, hitting Jimmy Berezik, Mathews, and Gay before finding Smolen for the capper, a 21-yard touchdown to make it a 28-0 Laker lead before Michigan Tech knew what hit them, with over two and a half minutes remaining in the first quarter.

After the teams exchanged punts on their next possessions, Howard continued his stellar play, intercepting a Steve Short pass on the Michigan Tech 22-yard line. Iciek found Berezik again through the air for the touchdown on the first play, pushing the Laker lead to 35.

So ended Iciek's day, and backup Marquel Neasman saw some much-needed playing time. He came out of the gates fast, finding Scott Blasko on his first play from scrimmage for a 31-yard gain. Gates did the rest of the work on the drive, rushing for 18 yards on the drive before it stalled and the Lakers kicked a 28-yard field goal to make it 38-0.

On the next Michigan Tech possession, they again found themselves going three-and-out, and again they made the mistake of punting to Gates. Gates took the kick and scampered 71 yards down the sideline to the Huskie six-yard line, and coach Martin awarded his hard work on the return by calling his number again on the first play, and he had a touchdown a couple seconds later to make it a 45-0 Laker lead.

Michigan Tech's only points came on their first drive of the second half, as they went 60 yards in 11 plays, ending with Short finding Keith White from seven yards away for the touchdown. The extra point attempt failed however, and Grand Valley held the 45-6 advantage.

With a little under five and a half minutes left in the game, redshirt freshman Justin Sherrod got his first career touchdown as he punched it in from eight yards out to push the lead to 52-6, which is where it would end.

Eight players got carries for the Lakers in this game, led by Lawrence Kimble who saw his first action of the season and carried the ball 14 times for 56 yards. Gates had 46 yards and a touchdown on seven carries, Sherrod had 37 yards and a touchdown on nine carries, and Berezik had 35 yards on three carries. Smolen had 35 yards rushing while being on the receiving end for 21 yards and a touchdown. Mathews again led the receivers, catching four passes for 86 yards and two touchdowns, while Berezik had two catches for 64 yards and a touchdown. Neasman finished the day 3-of-6 passing for 85 yards. On defense, the Lakers were led by Brad Howard with nine total tackles, two tackles for loss (-7 yards), one forced fumble, and one interception. Matt Bakker, Zach Breen, and Blair Hollis each had seven tackles, while Richard had 1.5 sacks to go with his fumble recovery and four tackles.

For Michigan Tech, backup running back Akeem Cason did a great job, running for 98 yards on 11 carries in the second half, while the Lakers held the nation's leading scorer in Milbrath to no touchdowns, and 29 yards on 15 carries. Short passing the ball went 8-for-15 for 66 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. On defense, the Huskies were led by Chet White who had nine tackles, a forced fumble, fumble recovery, and pass break-up. Drew Vanderlin also had seven tackles and 1.5 sacks.

Grand Valley this Saturday is traveling to Tiffin, Ohio to take on new conference-foe, the Tiffin Dragons for their homecoming game. Tiffin this season is 1-4 with a 34-28 win over Northern Michigan in four overtimes. They suffered close losses to Ferris State (14-12) and Findlay (36-27) in their first two games of the season, and the Dragons have been taken care of easily the last two weeks, dropping games to Ashland (34-6) and Wayne State (34-18). The Lakers next home game is on October 11th, Grand Valley's homecoming, when they take on potential playoff-contender Hillsdale College.


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