Norwayne was the defending Division IV State Champions and were riding a 19-game winning streak heading into the contest. But the Red Devils (14-0) were able to contain the Bobcats (13-1) potent offensive rushing attack, by utilizing junior linebacker Michael Ferns as a run stopper all night long.
"I'm proud of myself," Ferns told GoBlueWolverine. "I'm proud of my team. This is something we strive for since day one. It's about to happen"
Rated a four-star linebacker, Ferns went down in the first-half with an apparent knew injury. However, he was able tough out the pain and finish the game with a slight limp.
"A little issue with the knee. Yeah, it actually happened to me last year in the regional semifinals. You got to play through it. You really can't sit around," Ferns said.
With St.Clairsville set to play Clinton-Massie (14-0) for the Division IV State Championship this Friday, Ferns says his knee should not be an issue going forward.
"We've prepared every week well," Ferns said. "It comes down to game planning. It the toughest team we played all year. So I hope we are prepared for it."
Ferns was the first player to commit to the 2014 Michigan recruiting class. While he is firm with his commitment, he says there are other programs perusing his services.
"I'll admit it right now, I am solid with Michigan," Ferns explained. "There is no other way for me."
When Ferns committed to the Maize & Blue back in Aug., he says he knew he wanted to commit right away.
"I got talking to my dad, and I was like, ‘Hey, I want this happen as soon as possible. Cause I don't want anyone to beat me to it. I want to be that spot.' And I took that role," Ferns said on his commitment.
At 6-foot-3, 235-pounds, Ferns says he takes pride in being the first Wolverine commit in the 2014 class. He wouldn't name names, but says he is trying hard to get other star players to join him in Ann Arbor.
"I don't want to throw any names out," Ferns said. "I'll talk to a few here and there. After the season, that's when I will really get on it."
With his junior campaign almost over, Ferns says he plans on taking a little rest this off-season to heal his body. Then the future Wolverine plans on focusing on improving his run stopping ability and earning a spot in The Opening by Nike.
"I want to hit The Opening," Ferns explained. "That's the one I am really looking forward too. Outside of that, take it easy, build back up strength wise. And go from there.
"I think at linebacker spot strength is necessary. I want to come in as strong as fast as possible. Along with that, I believe my run game (as a linebacker) in comparison to the passing game is the weakest point of my (game.) I want to look forward to working on getting off lineman and get to the ball quicker and making moves inside."
As far as his next visit to Ann Arbor, Ferns says he has no set date right now—although he says he would like to visit for a Michigan hockey and basketball game sometime this season.