LEROY  — Mark Herron was making the plays this season for the Pine River Bucks, who all quietly went about their roles in making the team successful.

He was a junior in his first varsity season. He played backup fullback and linebacker, and saw extensive action during the season. He saw extensive duty as linebacker.

“I’m there to stop the RAC, as we call them, runs after catch,” Herron said. “I’m there to stop the run game, anything up the middle, around the ends, basically everything. It’s my job to lay out the hits.”

Herron has a unique aspect to his game.

“I think my strength is I don’t care,” he said. “I just like to hit. Just give someone the ball in front of me.”

He had some key tackles for loss during the season and has caused some fumbles.

The Bucks were 8-4 and kept playing until last Friday when they lost 28-16 to Boyne City in the regional final.

“The key has been our teamwork,” he said. “We look at everything as a team. It takes everybody. We play for each other, not ourselves.”

The Bucks made the playoffs for the first time since 2005 and won a playoff game for the first time ever. They were 2-1 in the postseason. The best defensive games were against either McBain or Tawas, Herron said.

The Bucks beat McBain in the last regular season game to qualify for the playoffs and defeated Tawas in the first round.