Michel, Ellingson hoping to end prep careers with a winAaron Michel and Nathan Ellingson’s motivations for winning Saturday’s 11-man game at the Shrine Bowl are different from most of their teammates. Michel and Ellingson are looking for one victory in their final season.
By: By Chris Aarhus, The Jamestown Sun, The Jamestown Sun
Aaron Michel and Nathan Ellingson’s motivations for winning Saturday’s 11-man game at the Shrine Bowl are different from most of their teammates.
Michel and Ellingson are looking for one victory in their final season.
Both Jamestown High School graduates, who are competing for the West, said beating the East gives them one last chance at glory. The Blue Jays finished 0-9 last fall and have a new coach in Tim Fletcher, as Bill Cahill resigned after 14 years at the helm.
But Michel and Ellingson stood out in a season that didn’t have many bright spots. Michel was an all-WDA selection on the defensive line, while Ellingson made it on the offensive line.
The two will lace it up together one last time when the 11-man game kicks off at 4 p.m. at Fargo Shanley High School. The 9-man game will follow at 7 p.m.
“I haven’t won this year; I really want to push for a win,” Michel said.
Ellingson said it was something that came to mind on the bus ride back from visiting the Shriners Hospital in Minneapolis on Wednesday.
“A lot of the guys joke about their records and who beat who,” Ellingson said. “We get teased a little bit for 0-9, but we worked hard. It does mean a lot to both of us to win this game. We want to win it for our senior year. I’m going 110 percent, and the same goes for him.”
Ellingson has been playing tight end on offense.
“I love tight end,” said Ellingson, who signed to play with the University of Mary. “I do love blocking, and I get the option of going out for passes. They can use me either way. The defense has to really be on their toes.”
Ellingson said the offense looks to be run-first, but has been able to throw the ball.
“I think we’re gonna run a little bit more,” Ellingson said. “We have big linemen; we can do the ground and pound. But by all means, we can throw if we need to. That’ll be no problem.”
In an all-star game pitting the best of the each side of the state against each other, Ellingson said he expected a little more rivalry, competition and even grudges. There has been none of that, he emphatically stated.
“I really thought there’d be a fight or something,” he said. “What surprises me is how well we all get along. It’s been really fun here.”
Michel said the defense has strength on the line and speed in the secondary, a good combination for winning.
“We’ve got a couple of big guys up front and quick guys in the secondary,” he said. “It should be a fun one to watch.”
Unlike Ellingson, Michel won’t be continuing his athletic career. Instead, he’ll study agronomy at Bismarck State College.
“It’s one last game,” he said. “I wanted to come in and play one last game. That’s why I said yes to come here.”
Sun sports writer Chris Aarhus can be reached at (701) 952-8462 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org