Will Allen Park go far in grid playoffs?

Photo by Daniel Gretzner
Nick Fulton is starting quarterback for Allen Park and is in charge of the Jags’ passing game.

Downriver League teams are pitted against each other as the District State Playoff games begin. Allen Park (6-3) took on Taylor Truman (8-1) this past weekend in a game that could see the Jaguars come away with a victory.

Head Coach Thomas Hoover feels his Jags could pull an upset or two within the next couple of weeks. During a practice session last week, Hoover talked about his team playing Truman.

“We need to contain their speedy running backs and get our passing game to click on offense,” he said. “My team will be competitive all the way.”

Two of the attack weapons for the green and white consist of quarterback Nick Fulton and Jake Baran, a 6-foot-6-inch tight end. Fulton and Baran are both juniors and have combined in racking up plenty of real estate through the regular season. The Truman defense will need to be plenty stingy if they hope to keep this pair from gaining a lot of yards through the air.

Hoover has been the head honcho at Allen Park since 1995. That represents 17 years at the helm over at the Champaign Street campus. He has won more than 150 games during his stay. Hoover was an assistant coach before that, dating back to 1986.

Tom Danosky is the Jaguars’ quarterback coach and likes the way Fulton directs the spread offense on the field.

“Fulton is a smart kid and has a strong arm,” Danosky said. “He can fire away short or long, depending on what type of passing play is called.”

The Parkers needed a playoff win over Truman to continue their quest to keep moving along in the playoff arena. With the Downriver League teams playing and beating up on each other; survival for more than one league team to make it out of district play is doubtful.

In other playoff action, Fordson was favored last Friday when it hosted Dearborn High. The Tractors beat the Pioneers rather handily during the regular season. Both of these Western Wayne Athletic Conference teams can be explosive.

The rematch could wind up being a cliffhanger and could swing either way. It’s too bad that one of these two teams will be getting knocked out of the playoffs this early.