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North Muskegon wins first conference football title since 1986, sings on bus ride home

Norsemen notch eighth-straight victory, go unbeaten in first year of WMC Rivers Division.

Photos by Laura Moat for CatchMark

North Muskegon’s football program has waited 36 years to capture an outright conference championship.

How else would this Norse team celebrate than by belting out “Careless Whisper” on the happy bus ride home following a 42-6 victory at Shelby Friday night?

The Norsemen (8-1 overall) won their eighth straight game and finished 6-0 in the first year of the West Michigan Conference Rivers Division. They head to the Division 7 playoffs and look to host at least one home game when the postseason kicks off next week.

Shelby finishes 2-7 overall and 1-5 in the WMC Rivers.


North Muskegon’s football team is 2022 West Michigan Conference Rivers Division champion. Cue up your song, boys! #fyp #carelesswhisper #northmuskegon #wmc #catchmarksportsnet #csn #mhsaa #football

♬ Careless Whisper – George Michael

Here are notables and details from the game, followed by video highlights and reaction:

  • Friday marked North Muskegon’s first outright conference championship since 1986. The Norsemen won a conference title in 1991, but it was shared with Oakridge and Whitehall.
  • North Muskegon outgained Shelby, 367-49. The Norsemen outrushed the Tigers, 161-23, and outpassed them, 206-28.
  • North Muskegon sophomore quarterback James Young completed 12 of 15 passes for 197 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. He also ran for a TD.
  • North Muskegon senior Carsen Moat paced his team with 50 yards on three receptions. Senior Jordan Washington also made three catches, converting them into 46 yards.
  • North Muskegon sophomore TJ Byard caught two passes for 42 yards and a TD.
  • North Muskegon sophomore Drew Bartos and junior Landon Christensen also hauled in TD receptions.
  • North Muskegon sophomore Tristan Thomas ran 10 times for a game-high 84 yards.
  • North Muskegon junior Ben Meyers rushed five times for 61 yards and two TDs.
  • North Muskegon junior AJ Larkin paced his team defensively with five tackles.
  • North Muskegon senior Sam Gallo had four tackles, 2 1/2 for lost yardage.
  • Shelby’s Lalo Garcia was 4-of-17 passing for 28 yards.
  • Shelby senior Bishop Lee caught four passes for 38 yards and scored his team’s lone TD.

Lead writer for CatchMark SportsNet and Web Services leader for CatchMark Technologies.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Brenda Martin

    October 22, 2022 at 5:46 pm

    Congrats Norseman !!! 😃💙💛

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