GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — No program in West Michigan touts the recent big game experience of the Big Reds. This Friday, Muskegon will play in the state championship for the eleventh time this century.
Muskegon won it all in 2004, 2006, 2008 and in 2017. They’ve lost six title games in that span too.
"This team wants to definitely be a team because the last two teams fell short," Muskegon head coach Shane Fairfield said. "I think the team that was counted out the most at 3-2. People are looking forward to the future of the young team that we have. I think they want to bang their chests a little bit and say, 'Hey, don't count us out just yet.'"
Most of those championships squads featured a player that could make an argument for being the best on the field.
Cameron Martinez. La'Darius Jefferson. Kalil Pimpleton. DeShaun Thrower. Ronald Johnson.
This year’s team might not have a guy like that, but they might be the best TEAM that Muskegon has had in some time.
After a slow 3 and 2 start this year, the Big Reds have gotten better each week, and now they have one more mountain to climb.
"After those losses, we learned from them," Muskegon junior Destin Piggee said. "But after we heard we weren't what Muskegon used to be, we took it personally. We took everything personally about what everyone said about us. Of course, we were the underdogs and went out and worked."
Muskegon will face Detroit Martin Luther King Saturday night at 7:30pm. It’ll be a rematch of the 2018 State Finals.
King features one of the highest rated high school players in the country, quarterback Dante Moore. The Oregon commit led the Crusaders to a state championship win in 2021 over DeWitt.
►Make it easy to keep up to date with more stories like this. Download the 13 ON YOUR SIDE app now.