MARQUETTE - One area team got into the top five, another got knocked down a spot and two more were pushed out in this week's high school football poll released by the Upper Peninsula Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association this morning.
Marquette moved back into the Big Five in fifth place after defeating Negaunee, 34-26, in the annual Mining Journal Diamond Jubilee game at Hart Stadium on Friday. MSHS had missed the top five cut by a single vote last week.
The win was also significant for Marquette since it was Homecoming and guaranteed the 5-3 Redmen a MHSAA state playoff berth for the third straight time in Dave L'Huillier's three years as head coach. MSHS doesn't need a sixth win like most teams because it only plays eight regular-season games.
Marquette’s Shane Duquette carries the ball Friday against Negaunee in the annual?Mining Journal Diamond Jubilee game at Hart Stadium in Marquette (Journal photo by Zach?Jay)
Negaunee (7-1), meanwhile, slipped from second to third with its first loss this season, possibly endangering one or two weeks at home to start the playoffs.
The Miners also fell from third to ninth in the Associated Press Division 6 state poll, which includes nothing but 8-0 and 7-1 teams in the top 10.
Ishpeming (7-1) stayed put at No. 4 in the Big Five after cruising past Newberry, 29-6, at home on Friday to knock the 3-5 Indians out of any consideration for the playoffs.
The Hematites are also fourth in the state AP Division 7 rankings for the second straight week behind a trio of 8-0 teams and just ahead of perennial power Saginaw Nouvel Catholic Central (6-2).
Kingsford (7-1) solidified its hold on No. 1 in the Big Five after racing past Gladstone, 49-28, on Friday, while Menominee (7-1) remained a solid No. 2 with a similar 49-26 victory over next-door rival Marinette, Wis., on Saturday.
In the AP poll, Kingsford is sixth and Menominee 10th in Division 5.
Iron Mountain (4-4) and Calumet (5-3) fell out of the Big Five.
In the Little Five, L'Anse (6-2) dropped from fifth to the list of others receiving votes after falling to West PAC-leading and undefeated Eagle River Northland Pines, Wis., 68-24, on Friday. No. 1 North Dickinson (8-0) and No. 2 St. Ignace (8-0) remained a point apart after big wins over the weekend. In addition, the Saints are fourth and ND sixth in the state AP Division 8 poll.