The Mendon Hornets are in just their second season of 8-man football. A football program with a proud history (18 straight playoff appearances), they are able to add another thrilling moment to that storybook on Saturday afternoon. With a 30-14 victory over Morrice, they will play next Saturday for the 8-Man Division 2 State Championship.

After a scoreless first quarter, the Hornets found the scoreboard midway through the second. Evan Lukeman capped off the scoring drive with a 5-yard carry. He completed an Octopus with a conversion run, giving Mendon an 8-0 lead. Three minutes later, Jack McCaw would double the lead. He ripped off a 67-yard touchdown, sprinting past a flock of Orioles on his way to the end zone. Lukeman would add another conversion.

On the ensuing kickoff, Morrice saw a shift in momentum. Drew McGowan fielded the football, racing 53 yards through the coverage team for a score. He completed his own Octopus with a conversion run, trimming the deficit to eight, 16-8. The score would remain this way as the teams broke for halftime.

With just over four minutes left in the third quarter, the Orioles momentum continued to pile up. Drew McGowan again found himself in the end zone, this time on a 3-yard touchdown carry. A failed conversion pass left Morrice down by two, 16-14.

Jack McCaw, like he has done multiple times this fall, helped spark the Mendon response. His 35-yard dash to the end zone gave Mendon a 22-14 edge heading into the fourth quarter.

With nine-and-a-half minutes to play, Jack McCaw capped off the scoring with his third touchdown of the night, a 10-yard carry. He completed the Octopus with a conversion run, giving the Hornets a 30-14 victory.

Mendon outgained Morrice 378-170 in this game. The Hornets rushed for 336 yards. Jack McCaw turned 21 carries into 196 yards, while Evan Lukeman had 23 carries for 105 yards.

Mendon returns to the State Championship game for the first time since 2011, when they captured the Division 8 crown. In the school’s thirteenth State Championship game since the start of the MHSAA Playoffs in 1975, they will seek the school’s twelfth State Championship.

Standing in their way will be the Jets of Powers North Central. PNC is a perfect 12-0 with their latest victory a 36-12 win over Marion.