Gabriel Richard runs by Bishop Foley, claims league title

By: Zachary Manning | C&G Newspapers | Published October 16, 2020

 Madison Heights Bishop Foley’s Adam Kidder scores a touchdown against Riverview Gabriel Richard Oct. 16. The Ventures lost 42-14.

Madison Heights Bishop Foley’s Adam Kidder scores a touchdown against Riverview Gabriel Richard Oct. 16. The Ventures lost 42-14.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

RIVERVIEW –– The stakes were high for Madison Heights Bishop Foley and Riverview Gabriel Richard Oct. 16.

 Both teams entered the game undefeated and the winner would be the champion of the Catholic High School League Intersectional 1 Division.

 Gabriel Richard set the tone early, scoring on its first four drives and going up 28-0. It would go on to eventually win 42-14. The Pioneers moved to 5-0 overall and 3-0 in league play.

 “It’s really great,” Pioneers coach Tom Michalsen said of winning the league. “We came out and established the run, and we just kept running it. Anytime you beat a state-ranked team with a running clock, that’s awesome.”

 The running game proved to be pivotal for the Pioneers, as they racked up four rushing touchdowns. The Pioneers also collected a passing touchdown and scored on special teams.

 Nic Szczechowski was the star of the show for Gabriel Richard, collecting two of the four rushing touchdowns, returning a punt for a touchdown and coming away with an interception on defense.

“He’s one of the hardest working kids, very intelligent kid,” Michalsen said of Szczechowski. “He’s a great athlete pound for pound. Probably going to be an All-Stater, and we get him for another year.”

 The loss drops Foley to 4-1 overall and 2-1 in the league. Ventures coach Brian Barnes liked the fight of his team throughout and credited the Pioneers for the way they played.

 Jackson Zeiter got Foley on the board with a 9-yard rushing score and Dylan Gough connected with Adam Kidder for a 77-yard touchdown late in the fourth quarter.

 “I think we fought hard the whole game,” Barnes said. “I don’t know if it was jitters or what not. They’re good, and Tommy’s a great coach and they do great things. They’ve had a lot of success lately.”

 For Foley, the loss stings, but Barnes wants his team to see what it takes to reach the level of Gabriel Richard. The Pioneers have now won the league three consecutive years.

 The Ventures will take the field again at 7 p.m. Oct. 23 at home against Madison Heights Madison.

 “He’s got a machine,” Barnes said of the Gabriel Richard program “He’s got committed guys that are really strong. We’ll get there. We’re just not there yet.”