Traverse City Central Prepares for Warren De La Salle in Championship

TRAVERSE CITY — Traverse City Central seeks its first state title since 1988 and the Trojans will face a team familiar with playing on the biggest stage with Warren De La Salle.

The Trojans have dominated opponents since their season-opening loss to DeWitt, who will be playing in the Div. 3 state championship. Their closest game in the postseason came in the regional final against Caledonia in a 42-14 win.

“You look back at your season and yeah, we’ve had some big wins but I think every situation, every game we’ve been in, it kind of prepares you for this moment,” Central head coach Eric Schugars said. “And I told our kids, I said to them after the game — we still didn’t play a great game. I said, ‘the scariest thing is we haven’t played our best game yet.'”


The Trojans will have to play their best this week. They will face a De La Salle team who has also had no problem in the playoffs, winning their last two games by a combined 94-28.

The Pilots will make their seventh appearance in the state championship, losing last year to Muskegon Mona Shores, 25-19. They won three times in their previous six appearances, all coming from 2014-2018.

“They’re a great team all the way around. We know they’re well coached and we know they have a ton of players so it’s going to be tough trying to contain everyone and we’re looking forward to the challenge. It’s going to be fun,” Central senior Carson Bourdo said.

Traverse City Central hasn’t reached this stage since 1988 before Traverse City split into two schools. T.C. defeated Detroit Catholic Central in 1988, 24-14. They also won titles in 1978 and 1985. The Trojans played in the state semifinals last season, so this has been a goal all year.

“We finally got to that part where we can say ‘hey we’re playing at Ford Field now.’ The goal was to get there,” Schugars said. “Now the goal is to win it.”

The Trojans will play on Friday at 1 p.m. at Ford Field in Detroit.



Categories: Football