Madison Heights Madison's football season concludes with playoff loss to Detroit Loyola

By: Mark Vest | Madison - Park News | Published November 9, 2019

 Madison Heights Madison quarterback Arman Williams looks to make a play during a Division 7 district final against Detroit Loyola Nov. 9. The Eagles' season ended with a 16-0 loss to Loyola.

Madison Heights Madison quarterback Arman Williams looks to make a play during a Division 7 district final against Detroit Loyola Nov. 9. The Eagles' season ended with a 16-0 loss to Loyola.

Photo by Donna Agusti

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HAZEL PARK — Madison Heights Madison’s football season ended with a 16-0 loss against Detroit Loyola in a Division 7 district final Nov. 9 at Hazel Park High.

The Eagles finished the season at 6-5 overall and 2-3 in the Macomb Area Conference Silver Division.

With the win, Loyola improved to 6-4 overall.

There were just two touchdowns scored in the game, with Loyola junior Marquise Henderson finding the end zone in the first, and his teammate, senior Johndale Chestnut scoring in the fourth.

Following that last touchdown, the Bulldogs scored two more points via a safety.

Loyola controlled the play for the majority of the game.

Madison was without the services of running back Louis Wallace, who coach James Rogers said had 14 touchdowns during the season. It was a loss that was on Rogers’ mind following the game.

“We’re a running team, and with us losing our star back, that’s what hurt us,” Rogers said.  “We ran the ball 85 percent of the time all year, and it’s kind (of) tough after you run the ball that much to try to come out (and) throw the ball. … They played our run game really well.”

With its win, Loyola advances to the regional round of the playoffs against Cass City High.

“I was really pleased with our offensive line, the way the backs ran,” said Loyola coach John Callahan. “Defensively, I thought coaches put together a great defensive plan. I don’t think they got a first down ‘til late in the game. I think the key to the game was that ball control.”

Due to losing some players early in the season, Rogers said Madison had to change its personnel up. After the final game of this season, he still wasn’t sure exactly what kind of team the Eagles had.

“Even to this day, we’re still trying to find our identity, what our team was,” Rogers said.

Entering this season, the Eagles had only lost a total of two games over their 2017 and 2018 campaigns combined, including the team’s one setback in the Division 7 state championship last year. After experiencing that kind of success, losing can be an unwelcome adjustment.

“Our kids are not used to losing at all, so it’s still a culture shock for us when we get in these situations,” Rogers said.

Despite Madison’s season ending sooner than Rogers would have liked, he was able to turn some of his attention to the program’s potential going forward.

“We still got a lot (of) young guys,” he said. “We started four sophomores in our secondary, two young outside receivers. Still (going to) be looking for our quarterback position, as well.”

Rogers described the state of Madison’s program as “amazing.”

“We made huge strides,” he said. “We’re getting good numbers for the enrollment that we have in the school. Think we have about 318 kids, and our football program’s averaging about 75 kids on (our) football team, so that’s over 50 percent of our boys.”

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