Just like the King and Crockett contest, revenge was the call of the day. In the PSL Division 2 title game the Henry Ford Trojans had beaten the Frederick Douglass Hurricanes 27-26 in a stunning comeback from a 26-0 deficit.
However, at Ford Field the home of the Detroit Lions, Douglass reversed the early season outcome jumping out to 14-0 halftime lead and hanging on this time to win its first PSL championship with a convincing 28-0 victory.
Sporting the nickname of the legendary college football Miami Hurricanes and the same colors, too, Douglass (8-1) put the foot to the medal and showed all that this is a team to be reckoned in future PSL seasons.
“We had a lot of adversity this year,” exclaimed Douglass first year coach Al Demps. “Sure we got out to a 14-0 first half lead, but I made sure they remembered what happened the first time we met. To the kids credit they listened and came out in the second half, kept their focus and did not take their feet off the gas.”
The adversity coach Demps was referring to was just before the start of the season, it was determined Douglass’ field was unplayable, thus denying the team any home games.
Then on Sept. 26, the Douglass locker room was vandalized and a large amount of their equipment was stolen. Donations were made from area schools like Birmingham Brother Rice and Plymouth, and from Lions players Ndamukong Suh and Jahvid Best, among others.
“Through adversity the team has rallied together and created something special this season,” Demps said.
Leading the way for Douglass and doing his best Calvin Johnson impression was receiver and defensive back Delcory Williams. He latched onto two spectacular touchdown passes and added an interception for good measure.
“This is Ford Field and I was trying to be like Johnson,” Williams said with a giant smile on his face. “This is my senior year and early in the season I asked coach to start throwing the fade and Alley-Oop and he did.”
Coach Demps said that since they have been targeting Williams and the addition of a new offensive coordinator the offense have shined. The Hurricanes have been averaging 35 points per game in the last half of the season.
Douglass quarterback Kory Peterson did not complete many passes, but what he did he made it count. With Ford’s defense putting pressure on Peterson, he was sacked three times before he completed a pass, but when the line finally gave him time it resulted in a 70-yard catch and run to Demetrius Stinson.
Peterson followed that up with 33-yard and 13-yard touchdown passes to Williams. Stinson closed out the fourth quarter scoring with a 37-yard touchdown run.
“As a team we stepped up and made plays just like our coaches told us if we wanted to win a city title,” Peterson said. “We had a win mindset and we all remembered what happen when we played Ford earlier. We were determined to not let that happen again.”
Douglass’ defense was also spectacular in the rematch with Ford. They snatched three interceptions – Williams, Omari Taylor and Denzel Hawthorne all had interceptions that kept Ford off the score board.
Leland Stein can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or Twitter @LelandSteinIII