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LIONS FALL IN CHAMPIONSHIP, 14-9

Cleveland Fails to Capitalize on Four Detroit Turnovers

October 17, 2005
Mike Parris

Robert Hunt's second quarter touchdown pass to Roy Granger gave the Seminoles a lead they never would relinquish, as Detroit held on for a 14-9 victory in the 2005 MCFL Championship.

Despite holding the potent Seminole offense in check much of the game and forcing four fumbles, the Lions' offense failed to parlay the turnovers into touchdowns. Cleveland did take an early 3-0 lead following a Robert Hunt fumble deep in Detroit territory. Sam Poucki's 44 yard field goal with 6:01 remaining in the first half was high and true and the Lions appeared to have the momentum.

The Seminoles' 12-play, 95-yard drive early in the 2nd quarter ended in Hunt's picture-perfect 28 yard touchdown pass to Granger in the left corner of the endzone. Rasko Apostolvski's extra point made the score 7-3 and it would remain such heading to the lockerrooms for halftime.

The Lions' defense came up with several key turnovers in the 3rd quarter. However, two missed field goal attempts by the Lions kept the score 7-3 heading to the final quarter of play.

An exhausted Lion defense allowed several big pass plays on Detroit's first possession of the fourth quarter. With 11:12 remaining in the game, Seminoles' tight end Dennis Smith split the coverage and Hunt threaded the needle for a 22 yard touchdown and commanding 14-3 lead.

Cleveland finally hit paydirt with 5:25 remaining in the game. A bruised and battered Jon Hunek found Mike Parris alone in the endzone from 9 yard out, cutting the deficit to 14-9. A questionable no-call on the ensuing 2-pt conversion attempt kept the Seminoles' lead at five.

Detroit used most of the clock on their final possession, forcing Cleveland to exhaust their timeouts. However, on fourth down, the Lions' defense rose to the challenge and stopped the Seminoles on the Cleveland 40 yard line with a mere 0:14 left on the clock.

Jon Hunek, playing with a dislocated left wrist, completed a 39-yard pass down the left sideline to WR Melvin Stewart, moving the ball to the Detroit 21 yard line. Cleveland rushed to call timeout and confusion set in.

Prior the play, officials notified Cleveland that they, in fact, had a timeout remaining. However, in reality, the Lions' used all their remaining timeouts on the Seminoles' final possession of the game. After a lengthy delay, a plethora of arguments and conferences, two seconds were placed on the clock and a final play was granted.

It was a moot point, however, as Hunek's last-ditch pass into the endzone was broken up as 0:00 showed on the clock, leaving Cleveland wondering what could have been and Detroit savoring their MCFL title.

Cleveland (12-1) was led by RB Chip McClain, who carried 20 times for 82 yards. Jon Hunek completed 10 passes for 169 yards and a touchdown. Melvin Stewart, Vernell Jackson, Charlie Johnson and Mike Parris hauled in two passes each.

Congratulations to the Detroit Seminoles (12-1) on capturing the 2005 MCFL Championship in another historic battle.

The Lions would like to thank all their fans and supporters during the 2005 season. Check back soon for the Lions' post-season schedule and updates for the 2006 season.

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