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PREVIEW: Grosse Pointe North vs. Grosse Pointe South (MI)

October 1, 2012

The Grosse Pointe North Norsemen and the Grosse Pointe South Blue Devils will face off in the 44th meeting between the two rivals on Friday night. The Blue Devils defeated the Norsemen 18-13 in last season’s battle. South has now won two in a row after dropping six straight in the series. The Norsemen lead the all-time series, 28-15.

The Grosse Pointe South Blue Devils posted a 6-4 record in 2011, going 4-1 in conference play. Head Coach Tim Brandon’s 2012 team’s success will depend on the play of the defense. The defense returns 8 starters from last year’s team, all of them among the front 7. Senior Jack Doyle will be the highlight of the defense at middle linebacker. Doyle went down with an injury in 2011 and so did the Blue Devils defensive production. The Blue Devils defense allowed just 11 point per game when Doyle was playing. After he went out with an injury, the defense started to allow 37 points per game. Doyle recorded 135 tackles during the 2011 season. The defense will be rounded out by seniors Neal Fleming at defensive end and Renell Perkins at strong safety. Fleming will also play tight end as well on offense while Perkins will line up as tailback. The offense will be led by junior quarterback Richie Kish. Senior Robert Baldwin and junior Jordan Spratt will be the go-to wide receivers for Kish. The Blue Devils are off to a 5-1 start going into the game against the Norsemen.

The Norsemen of Grosse Pointe North went 4-5 in 2011 with a 3-2 conference record. Head Coach Frank Sumbera’s team returns 14 players, 7 on offense and 7 on defense. The secondary will be the strong point of the 2012 team with all of the defensive backs returning from last year. Seniors Robert Tillman, Jack Guest, Tiawan Wiggins and Chris Hamilton will led the intimidating secondary for the Norsemen. Hamilton is a 3-year starter who recorded 63 tackles last season. Tillman will also play some wide receiver on top of his defensive back duties. The offense will be led by senior Sean McHale at quarterback. Lining up behind him will be junior Tod Long at tailback. Long rushed for 853 yards and 7 touchdowns as a sophomore while adding another 2 touchdowns and 207 yards in the passing game. Long sat out last weekend’s game against Warren Cousino. Chris Hamilton filled in for him and rushed for 88 yards on 13 carries and scored 2 touchdowns in the win. The Norsemen bring a 4-2 record into the game against the Blue Devils.

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