The Battle of the Valleys Goes to the Lakers

Last night I was up in Allendale, Michigan to see the annual battle between Division II rivals Grand Valley State Lakers and Saginaw Valley State Cardinals. The Lakers came into the game ranked #1 in Division II while the Cardinals were ranked #13. I was delayed getting into the game because one security guard decided that my camera bag was illegal, and made me leave the stadium. This might be the only place that has the bag check inside the stadium. My ticket had already been ripped so once I left I knew that I was in trouble. The Barney Fife that was enforcing some hidden rule assured me that I could re-enter. After a walk to my car and back which caused me to miss the first six minutes of the game the girls at the gate said that I would need to buy a new ticket. Barney was remaining quiet so I just walked in. They yelled for me to stop, but I just kept on going. With a GLIAC and stadium record crowd of 16,467 in the stadium I knew that I would blend in quickly. As usual we could not sit in our own seats at the stadium because the SRO crowd was in them. We found some better seats that were not accounted for and sat there.

As far as the game went the Lakers were up 10-0 by the time I was in my seat. I was able to see the first score, but I was still trying to find either an usher or an open seat. Cornerback Robert Carslisle was having a great night when a freak play put him out for a while. He already had two picks on the night when the Cardinal running back fumbled the ball which came right back up to him. The back picked up the ball in mid stride and kept on running. Somewhere at the bottom of the pile when he was tackled was Carlisle. When the players cleared the area all you could see at the bottom was Carlisle on the ground with his legs in the air with his lower left leg pointed at a terrible angle. This may have been the most gruesome injury I have ever seen at a football game. The picture to the left shows Robert being treated. The injury timeout took a while understandably while they immobilized his leg. That was the only real speed bump of the night for the Lakers who rolled to a 38-7 victory. The only Cardinal score appeared to be a fumble, but the score was already out of hand so I think it was left alone. These two teams really hate each other, but as far as I have seen it has been a one sided affair lately. The Lakers have won 45 straight regular season games, and 75 of its last 78 GLIAC contests. They really are the class of this Division. The AFCA has released 112 polls since they started in 2001, and Grand Valley has been #1 in 75 of those polls. Like most GVSU games that I have been to this one was over early, and that made for a boring second half. The Cardinals could not get anything going, and the Lakers went to a very vanilla offense. Most of the record crowd was gone shortly after halftime. I guess when the highest priced ticket is $15 you can afford to just watch the first half.