Muskies set to face Maples in quarter-finals

Jamie Mountain

With the regular season in the books, the Muskie football team now is looking forward to the playoffs.
The St. John’s Tigers (5-1), Elmwood Giants (5-1), and Churchill Bulldogs (4-2) all won their final games last week, meaning the Muskies (4-2) finished fourth in the WHSFL’s seven-team Currie Division (‘A’).
As such, the black-and-gold will face the fifth-ranked Maples Marauders (2-4) in a quarter-final showdown slated for tomorrow at 2:30 p.m. at Fort High.
The Muskies previously had beaten Maples 17-7 here back on Oct. 4 in their regular-season meeting.
“Maples is a good team, well-coached,” Muskie head coach Mike Cuzzolino said of the Marauders.
“They played us pretty tough last time around and caught us off guard,” he noted. “We won’t allow that to happen this time around.
“We will be ready. The boys are ready,” Cuzzolino added. “They’ve worked really hard all season long and have that hunger back.
“We just need to make sure to give 100 percent every play,” he stressed.
After their win over Maples during the regular season, Cuzzolino felt the Muskies had left some points off the board.
But they will do their best to rectify that this time around.
Muskie quarterback Brady Meeks finished that game going nine-for-20 for 167 yards and two touchdowns while also throwing two interceptions.
He also picked up 23 yards on three carries.
Riley Argue finished with seven catches for 134 yards while punching in both Muskie touchdowns.
Jacob Argue had one catch for 18 yards while Ayden Gushulak had one for 15 yards.
On the ground, Brett Allan had a big day in recording 91 yards on 11 carries.
Sheldon Kelly had three carries for 16 yards while Cam Bowles picked up two yards on a single carry.
Defensively, Colten Allen led the black-and-gold with six tackles.
Kaden Kocuiba had five tackles, with Allan registering four tackles while also recording an interception and a fumble recovery.
Riley Argue had four tackles along with an interception.
Jaykob Ryll, Wyatt Richards, Hunter Wagner, and Josh Gurley each had three tackles.
“Our biggest challenge [tomorrow] will be overcoming our own nerves of having a home playoff game,” Cuzzolino remarked.
“It’s so easy to be distracted so we just need to keep our focus on each other.”