**ARTICLE BY JOSH LONGSTRETH**
Nearly everything has gone right for the Gladwin football team. It has been a nearly flawless start to the 2022 season for them. Their biggest adversity to date, was last week on a Sanford Meridian kickoff return. How did Gladwin respond? By going on to score 51 consecutive points en route to a 58-7 victory over the 2nd place Mustangs. Pinconning would be the latest team to see if they could give them too much to handle in week 6. Like the old saying goes, when you play a team that has nothing to lose, that makes for a very dangerous ingredient.
Gladwin would jump on top early in this one. Nick Wheeler would find paydirt from 22-yards out. After a successful PAT try from Anna Seebeck, Gladwin would lead 7-0. They wouldn’t stop there. Lucas Mead would grab an INT that he would take back 50-yards giving Gladwin a 13-0 lead. Seebeck would add another, and Gladwin was off and running 14-0. The Flying G’s would tack on more in the quarter. This time, they scored on a punt return, as Earl Esilline would find daylight from 42-yards. The Seebeck PAT would make it a 21-0 Gladwin lead. They would take a commanding lead when Wheeler would find Kaden McDonald on an 8-yard pass. The PAT would be no good, but it would be all Gladwin, 27-0, after one.
Pinconning would look to see if they could get back in this one, but Gladwin was having none of it. They’d open the scoring in the quarter on a Logan Kokotovich 8-yard scamper. Seebeck would make this a 34-0, Gladwin. That’s when Wheeler would find Esilline through the air. The 35-yard TD pass would give the visiting team a then 41-0 advantage after the Seebeck PAT. Seebeck would take a moment off from the kicking duties. This time she would put more points on the board when she would grab a rushing TD of her own from 7-yards out. She would add the extra point giving her team a 48-0 advantage after one half of play.
The 2nd half would be a stalemate. Gladwin would cruise in this one to stay undefeated on the year. Nick Wheeler would total 3 TD’s on the night, 2 passing and 1 rushing. Logan Kokotovich would add a TD on the ground to go with 2 tackles for loss on the defensive side. Seebeck added a TD on the ground to go with 6 PAT’s on the night. Earl Esiline added a receiving TD and punt return TD. Kaden McDonald added a TD through the air. Lucas Mead got into the action from the defensive side on his INT TD.
Gladwin will move to 6-0 on the year. They sit at 5-0 in the JPC and don’t look to be letting loose on the reigns. Head Coach Marc Jarstfer was thrilled with his teams performance, “A lot of young guys got a lot of experience tonight and handled themselves well. Good stuff to have on film and continue to develop our program”.
Even with the success they know they will have to enjoy this one but get locked in quickly as they face a Pontiac Notre Dame Prep team who has had much success of their own throughout the years. Jarstfer very much knows that, adding, “It’s a big game next week against a ranked Notre Dame Prep team and it really is a great opportunity to find out where we’re at against a perennial power”.
Notre Dame Prep sits at 5-1 on the year. Their one loss came in the first week of the season, and they have been nothing but dominant since. They have outscored last five opponents 225-68. It should be a thriller when Gladwin heads on road to William Kozyra Alumni Field to take on the Fighting Irish next Friday in a 7:00 showdown.
Pinconning will drop to 0-6 overall, and 0-4 in JPC play. They’ll face a Shepherd team who is coming off a dominant win over Harrison. Shepherd now sits at 4-2 overall, and 2-2 in JPC play. Pinconning heads to Shepherd to take on the Bluejays in a 7:00 tilt next Friday night.