A crucial stop on a two-point conversation attempt with 14 seconds left preserved River Rouge's 28-26 Division 5 semifinal victory over Ida Saturday, sending the team state finals at Ford Field.
Ida scored on a pass from David Kolakowski to Noah Sampson, setting up a game-tying conversion attempt. River Rouge's defensive stopped Eric Bugg short.
Alexander Carter's 75-yard TD catch on a screen play with 2:28 left held up as game winner.
"The entire defensive line did an outstanding job. They had a great surge at the line of scrimmage" River Rouge coach Corey Parker said. "We knew they were going to give it toEric Bugg and he was either going to bubble out or surge along the line ... and it worked out for us.
"Now we're headed to Ford Field against that juggernaut of a team in (Grand Rapids) West Catholic."
Quarterback Antoine Burgess finished 8-of-12 for 217 yards. Two of three of Burgess' TD strikes went to Aaron Vinson (four catches for 114 yards) for 20 and 60 yards.
Defensively, linebacker Dontize Sims and defensive back each had Reggie Pearson each had 13 solo tackles while defensive back Eric Chenault finished with 12.
River Rouge (12-1) plays Grand Rapids West Catholic (11-2) 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Ford Field.
Lowell 49, Walled Lake Western 34: Lowell's Ryan Stevens proved to be too much for Walled Lake Western, accounting for six touchdowns. He completed 8-of-15 passes for 188 yards and three TD, and he rushed 15 times for 73 yards and three more scores. Walled Lake Western's Kyle Thomas completed 13-of-25 passes for 246 yards and one TD, and he also ran 15 times for 80 yards and two TD. Lowell (12-1) will play Detroit King (13-0) for the Division 2 title.
Orchard Lake St. Mary's 14, East Grand Rapids 7: Senior fullback Troy Marks had a 2-yard TD run in the second quarter and junior tailback Ryan Johnson followed with a 75-yard run in the third quarter for St. Mary's. Junior linebacker Josh Ross led the defense with 11 tackles. St. Mary's will play for the Division 3 state title against the winner of the Chelsea vs. Coldwater semifinal, which was postponed until Sunday.