Wakefield, MI – October 10, 2020 – The Negaunee Miners Football team traveled over two hours to Wakefield, where it won going away by a score of 48-0 over the Gogebic Miners for the Dick Koski Trophy. Nash Hillier had a career game for Negaunee with four touchdown runs, helping improve the Miners to 3-1 on the season. Mark Evans and Gregg Nelson had the call on Sunny 101.9.
Gogebic started with the football inside of its home stadium, however things went wrong quick for the host Miners after being forced to punt after three downs. On the snap, it sailed through the punter’s hands, and Negaunee recovered at the Gogebic 15-yard line. Nash Hillier was the focal point on offense for the visiting Miners, and didn’t take him long to get going after a seven-yard run inside of the one-yard line. On the next play, Hillier punched it in behind the block of Lukas Nelson to make it 6-0. Gogebic jumped offsides on Philip Nelson’s missed extra point attempt, so Negaunee went for the two-point try and converted with a Hillier run to extend the lead to 8-0. The Gogebic offense led by quarterback Jack Matrella couldn’t get anything going, and had to punt the ball back to Negaunee. The road team Miners started its second possession inside of its own 10-yard line, and on third down at the 11, Hillier took the option pitch 89 yards for his second touchdown of the game. Philip Nelson’s extra point was good, and Negaunee led 15-0 with four minutes left in the first quarter. Gogebic’s third drive ticked off more clock than the first two, but ended up becoming a disaster after a Matrella fumble was picked up by Negaunee’s Isiah Wood.
End of 1st: Negaunee Miners 15, Gogebic Miners 0
Negaunee didn’t take long to turn the fumble into points, once again on the option pitch it was Hillier going the distance for the 35-yard touchdown run. Philip Nelson kicked the ball through the uprights after Hillier’s third touchdown, and Negaunee took a commanding 22-0 lead. Gogebic drove the ball to around midfield, but had to punt the ball once again after having a long seven yards to go for the first down. Negaunee was pinned back deep on another possession, but it was no worry for the Miners as Eli Luokkala picked up big yardage on a catch over the middle from quarterback Gerald Johnson. The long drive continued behind the legs of Lukas Nelson and Hillier, and Negaunee was back inside of the 20-yard line. After a Gogebic defensive stand, Negaunee had 11 yards to go on fourth down but Johnson delivered with a 20-yard touchdown pass to Matt Skewis. Nelson’s extra point was good, and Negaunee led 29-0 over Gogebic with 5:43 left in the second quarter. Negaunee kept its foot on the gas in the remainder of the second half, and after forcing another punt, Hillier scored his fourth touchdown of the game with 10 yards out. The extra point was no good after a fumbled snap, but Negaunee led 35-0 at halftime.
Halftime: Negaunee Miners 35, Gogebic Miners 0
Negaunee started the second half with the football and caught a bad break for the first time, where Lukas Nelson fumbled and it was recovered by Gogebic’s Connor Fingeroos. This was maybe Gogebic’s chance to chip into the 35-point deficit, but the home team turned the ball over on downs after Preston Toutant made the play for Negaunee. After beginning another drive with great field position, Lukas Nelson punched the ball into the endzone to make up for his fumble, and the Miners led 41-0 after three quarters in the midst of a running clock.
End of 3rd: Negaunee Miners 41, Gogebic Miners 0
The fourth quarter appeared to have not much action at the start, until Negaunee’s Bryce Storms picked off Matrella’s pass and returned it 57 yards for the touchdown. Philip Nelson nailed another extra point, and the visiting Miners took a 48-point lead on the hosting Miners. After taking control early and keeping up the pace, Negaunee picked up a big 48-0 victory over Gogebic, improving to 3-1 on the season and leaving Wakefield with the Dick Koski Trophy for the third straight year.
Final Score: Negaunee Miners 48, Gogebic Miners 0
NEXT GAME: The Negaunee Miners Football team is tentatively scheduled to travel up to Houghton to face the Gremlins on Friday, Oct. 16. If the game happens as scheduled, Mark Evans and Gregg Nelson will have the call on Sunny 101.9. The Elder Agency Pregame Show will begin at 6:30 p.m., with the game to follow at 7 p.m. Go Miners!