**ARTICLE BY JOSH LONGSTRETH**
In a week 7 contest with a tough Swan Valley team, the Freeland Falcons may have come up with their most impressive win of the year. In a game that was close throughout, Freeland was able to grind throughout. A win in which championship caliber teams do. The Falcons showed they fortitude that week, the question heading into week 8, was could they do it again. After two straight losses the Birch Run Panthers were able to get a much needed win in week 7 over Bridgeport. Fighting for their playoff lives, they would face a Falcon team destined for the playoffs and possibly more.
This one would be tight early. Freeland would jump on top on a Ty Fournier 3-yard TD run. It would give Freeland a 7-0 lead on the road. Birch Run would gain some momentum back shortly after. Kahleel Brown would plunge in from 3-yards out on what was a 10-play drive for the Panthers. The home team would cut the lead to 7-6 after a failed PAT and that’s where it would stand after one quarter of play.
That’s about as close as the Panthers would get in this one. Freeland would take control of the game in the 2nd. Fournier would find a seem and the speedster would head in for another TD on the night. This would give the Falcons a 14-6 advantage after another PAT. Freeland would quickly add more after a 21-yard TD scamper from Eli Murphy giving the Falcons a 20-6 lead after the missed PAT. Fournier would add some fireworks in the 2nd. This time he would find his way in again from 51-yards out in just one play for the Freeland offense. It would stand at 26-6, all Falcons, after one half of play.
Freeland would open the scoring in a drive that would suck the life right out of the Panthers. The Falcons would chew up some clock on a 12-play drive that would result in a Cole Jimkowski 1-yard TD run. This would give the Falcons a 33-6 lead heading into the final quarter of play.
The Falcons would put up the lone score in the 4th with another drive that wins you ball games in late October. They would put together a 9-play 72-yard possession that would result in a Nate Helmrich 1-yard TD plunge. This would be the night of the Falcons as they would go on to take this one, 40-6.
Freeland came into week 8 and did what the Freeland Falcons do, and that’s pound the football. The Falcons would rack up 335 yards on the ground. The home town Panthers just wouldn’t be able to do anything to stop the run. The Falcons would find their way into the endzone on their first five possessions of the game. Ty Fournier would have himself a night for the green and white. He would pile up 205 yards on the night to go with his 3 TD’s on 13 carries.
After this one, Freeland now moves to 7-1 overall and 5-1 in TVC play. They have a huge week 9 matchup with the Cros-Lex Pioneers who are coming off a tough loss to North Branch. The Pioneers sit at 6-2 overall on the year. Both teams will look to gain some big momentum heading into the playoffs when Cros-Lex welcomes in Freeland for a 7:00 showdown next Friday night.