Imlay City’s Lance Wolford looks to pick up a first down during his team’s season-opener versus Durand last Thursday. Durand won the contest.

IMLAY CITY — The Imlay City varsity football squad opened the 2021 campaign with a 42-14 setback to visiting Durand in a non-league matchup last Thursday night.

“We had three drives stall in the red zone during the first half,” Imlay City Coach Brian Tresnak commented. “You aren’t going to win many games that way,” he noted.

“We are going to circle the wagons this week and put in extra work on conditioning and finishing on both sides of the ball. We are better than we played tonight.”

In Thursday’s matchup, Durand took an 8-0 advantage after one quarter was over with.

The middle two quarters saw Durand generate 34 total points and Imlay City manage eight, leaving the former up 42-8 with 36 minutes gone.

Imlay City then outscored Durand 6-0 the rest of the way, only to drop a 42-14 verdict.

The hosts generated their 14-point output aided by a Jacob Burgess one-yard touchdown run (followed by an Aaron Evely PAT tote); and a Cristian Rojas four-yard touchdown run.

For the evening, Burgess completed four of ten pass plays as Imlay City’s quarterback. He threw zero interceptions along the way.

His successful tosses were distributed to two different targets. Their ranks consisted of Julian Rojas (two catches for 37 yards) and Cristian Rojas (two receptions for 14 yards).

The Imlay City ground attack wound up with 235 yards on 46 totes.

Individually, Cristian Rojas (16 rushes for 81 yards) and Julian Rojas (79 yards on 10 totes) and Lance Wolford (eight rushes for 43 yards) put up Imlay City’s best numbers. The remaining 12 Spartan totes netted a combined 32-yard gain.

Wolford (seven solos and 10 assists) paced Imlay City’s defense. He was backed by Julian Rojas (two solos and five assists), Cristian Rojas (six assists), Brady Vanderploeg, Brady Redd and Hunter Hill (five assists each), Danny Newsom (two solos and two assists) and Dillan Landerschier (four assists).

Xander Nolin added a blocked punt to Imlay City’s cause.

Imlay City will look to bounce back this Thursday when it entertains Blue Water Area Conference rival Richmond. That battle is slated to get underway at 7 p.m.

Kevin Kissane

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.