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Knights knock off Harper Woods

Liggett quarterback Connor McCarron, No. 1, calls the play in the huddle during the Knights’ home win over Harper Woods. Photo by Paul Kania
October 24, 2013
Before the season began, everyone thought the University Liggett football team would be a joke.

The Knights lost a ton of seniors and the head coach resigned to concentrate on business.

In stepped former head football coach Dan Cimini and he molded a new group of players into a team one win from making the state playoffs.

The host Knights improved to 5-3 last weekend with an impressive 33-6 win over Harper Woods.

“We played a good game on both sides of the ball,” Cimini said. “Everyone was focused on playing well and winning this game to put us in position to try to make the state playoffs.

“I’m proud of all of my players, but we still have a lot of work to do.”

The Knights’ offensive line paved the way for running backs Tommy Jackson and Darryl Lewis to dominate. Jackson rushed for 283 yards and three touchdowns, and Lewis gained 101 yards as the home team controlled the clock and possession of the ball.

The offense has clicked ever since Cimini changed Jackson to running back and put Connor McCarron in at quarterback. The duo of Jackson and Lewis gives the Knights an explosive backfield, while McCarron has managed the game well and passes the ball enough to keep defenses honest.

Against the Pioneers, he completed an 81-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Lordanthony Grissom.

“I like how well the offense runs after the changes we made,” Cimini said. “The line is doing a great job of creating lanes for Tommy and Darryl to run through and Connor is a smart kid who runs the offense.”

The Knights’ defense had a shutout going until the Pioneers scored late in the fourth quarter. However, the defense forced turnovers and made life tough for the opposing quarterback and running backs.

Coming up for Liggett is its regular season finale at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at Clarkston Everest Academy and Collegiate High School.

“This is a big game for us,” Cimini said. “We have to win to automatically qualify for the state playoffs. We know Everest is a good team and it will take a solid effort to beat them.

“We can’t turn the ball over and we have to continue to dominate both sides of the ball. If we do that, we can win this game.”

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