The Mendon varsity football team has one more hurdle to clear before returning to the state finals for the first time since 2011. The 11-0 Hornets face fellow unbeaten Ottawa Lake Whiteford Saturday in Howell in a Division 8 state semifinal battle for the right to go to Ford Field and face the winner of Friday’s contest between Iron River West Iron County and Saginaw Nouvel.
Here are a few things Mendon fans should know about Whiteford:
Ottawa Lake Whiteford
Head Coach: Jason Mensing
League: Tri-County Conference
2017 Record: 11-0
Last Season: The Bobcats finished 13-1 and Division 8 state runner-up following a 35-6 loss to Muskegon Catholic Central.
Bobcats By The Numbers
This season marks the 18th playoff appearance for Whiteford, which includes its current streak of six consecutive postseason berths.
Total number of wins for the program since its inception in 1957. The Bobcats have a program record of 342-22-4 and are 18-17 in playoff games.
The average margin of victory this season for Whiteford, which has scored 53.8 points per game and limited opponents to 11.8 per contest.
The average rushing output per game for the Bobcats, which scored 74 touchdowns on the ground leading up to the state semifinal matchup with Mendon.
Passing yards per game this season for coach Mensing’s squad. Senior quarterback Thomas Eitniear is 43-for-62 this year for a 69.4 completion percentage (best in school history) and a total of 1,150 yards and 15 TDs. Eitniear has amassed a school-record 3,249 yards in his three years as the starter. His 39 career starts are the most in school history.
The number of times Whiteford has gone for it on fourth down. The Bobcats converted each time, thanks in large part to 6-foot-5, 280-pound senior offensive tackle Lucas Tesznar, who has drawn interest from a number of Division I college programs.
The number of 100-yard rushing games junior running back Logan Murphy has churned out in his career. He ran for a career-high 212 in Week 3 against Summerfield. He has accounted for 1,599 yards and 23 touchdowns.
The number of Whiteford opponents this year that qualified for the playoffs.
The number of interceptions by junior cornerback Ty Eitniear this year, which is one shy of of the team’s single-season record.