Almont undefeated in league play, wins title
ALMONT — Almont made it back to back years as Blue Water Area Conference champions, accomplishing the feat with a 49-0 road triumph against Yale last Friday night.
With decision, Almont improves to 8-0 and 7-0. Yale slips to 1-7 and 0-7.
“We achieved another one of our goals with an outright BWAC title tonight,” Almont Coach James Leusby said. “We are very proud to repeat as champions and the kids have worked hard for this,” he noted.
“As always, we are grateful for the support of our community and are looking forward to some more good football.”
In Friday’s contest, Almont jumped out to a 21-0 advantage after one quarter was over with and widened the gap to 41-0 by halftime.
That was followed by a scoreless third quarter of play.
Quarter four would see Almont outscore Yale 8-0, finishing off a 49-0 win.
The victorious Almont side generated their 49-point output aided by a Josh Hellebuyck to Colby Schapman 60-yard touchdown pass (followed by a successful extra point kick courtesy of Brandon Hunsaker); a Michael Lulgjuraj 28-yard touchdown run (followed by an accurate extra point boot from Hunsaker); a Jacob Castillo 19-yard touchdown run (followed by a successful extra point kick courtesy of Hunsaker); a Hellebuyck eight-yard touchdown run (followed by an accurate extra point boot from Hunsaker); a Mason Smith eight-yard touchdown run (followed by a successful extra point kick courtesy of Hunsaker); a Hellebuyck to Schapman 29-yard touchdown pass; and a Noah Houvener eight-yard touchdown run (followed by a conversion run by Gavin Dempz).
For the evening, Hellebuyck completed five of nine pass plays for 153 yards as Almont’s quarterback. He threw zero interceptions en route.
His successful tosses went to two different targets. Their ranks consisted of Schapman (four catches for 123 yards) and Charlie Koenig (one reception for 30 yards.
The Almont ground attack managed 296 yards on 41 totes.
Individually, Lulgjuraj (five rushes for 102 yards) and Smith (63 yards on five totes) proved Almont’s most productive ballcarriers. The remaining 31 Raider rushes netted a combined 131-yard gain.
Landon Kruse and Shane Vandenbossche (three solos and one assist apiece) paced Almont’s defense. Caleb Weigand (three solos), Scott Pape, E. Bankston and Nathan Kerby (one solo and two assists each) along with Meric Okoniewski and Jacob Hausmann (three assists apiece) supported their performances.
The Almont defense also registered one takeaway. Blake Kapron (an interception) furnished that.
Almont will look to cap an unbeaten regular season run when they host Clio this Friday. The non-league game lists a 7 p.m. starting time.
Kevin Kissane has been covering high school sports for the Tri-City Times since 1985. When not standing on a field or court with his camera and notepad, he enjoys golf, travel and family. Kevin is a 1980 graduate of Capac High School, and is also a grad of St. Clair Community College and earned a degree in journalism from Central Michigan University.