Indians put it all together in win over Panthers 39-6
Editor Note: Kevin Atwood contributed to this article
In 2009 the Indians rolled into Hesperia with an 0-7 mark during their second year in the pre-divided CSAA. The Panthers season had been equally frustrating as they too were getting pounded by the bigger schools and came in winless.
The Indians held their hosts to a single score and though they would lose the season finale the conference win was something to build on.
The following year due to declining numbers there would be no football in the Cloud.
It would be another 8 years and 43 straight conference losses before they would break the streak by once again holding their Hesperia hosts to a single score in a game where both teams were once again looking for win number one on the season.
Full disclosure here. In our preview article we predicted the Panther backs would run amok against an Indian defense that has struggled to hold opponents in check. Come game time both of the premiere Panther backs Gerrit Yates and Kanin Witte were out with injuries and the WC ‘D’ made sure the Panther running game never got traction. The defense even notched a score of their own on a 31 yard fumble return by Devon Trice.
The Indians scored on their first two offensive possessions and never looked back. It was not Hesperia’s night. With an opportunity to score before the half the Panthers were trying to punch the ball in from inside the 5 and as time grew short they spiked the ball to kill the clock.
Unfortunately it was 4th down and the ball went over to the Cloud on downs.
The WC offense behind the leadership of Kevin Arnold scored 5 times including a pair of passes from Arnold to Conner Maring (13 yards) and Eric Plotts (29 yards). Alex Doke scored one of three rushing TD’s with Arnold carrying in the other two.
The ground game was led by Buck Seabrook who pounded the Panther line for 71 yards Doke added another 48 and Steven Holt finished with 42.
On the defensive side Seabrook paced the group with 11 tackles followed by Adrian Rodriguez (7) and Tucker Kooman (6).
A huge win for the program and a lesson to never underestimate the heart and resilience of the players who wear the Orange and Black.
Newaygo 34 Big Rapids 27
Ok no one is mentioning the ‘P’ word yet but this was a really key win for the Lions who face winless opponents the next two weeks before the M-37 showdown with their neighbors to the south.
The Lions shook off a drive-killing first quarter fumble that Braeden Childress took the other way for an 84 yard touchdown and grinded out a large enough lead to cause a late game charge by the Cards to come up short.
Led by Connor Swinehart, the Lions scored the next three touchdowns then answered a Cardinal score in the 4th.
Swinehart flipped a screen pass to Anthony Hudson who raced in for a 14 yard score to tie the game just before the first quarter ended. The extra point attempt was unsuccessful but after that kicker Francisco Rios would split the uprights 5 straight times before the final gun.
Swinehart punched it in from 2 yards out to put Newaygo up 13-6 at the half then early in the third followed his o-line push in from a yard out to up the lead to 20-6.
Zachary Rodriguez tore loose for a 54 yard scamper to the end zone to push the Lion advantage to 27-6.
Swinehart would score again and the final quarter saw a furious rally by the Cards that proved too little too late.
“It was a big win for us,” said Lion Head Coach Scott Van Essen. “ I thought we played hard and our players came up with some big plays both offensively and defensively.
“Maybe not the way we wanted to finish but we're extremely happy to come away with a win.”
Rodriguez (164) and Swinehart (124) each eclipsed triple figures in rushing with Cooper Heinzman adding another 55. Heinzman and Braden Benjamin each recorded a sack while Dalton Jones and Noah Graff led the defense in tackles with 5 apiece.
Newaygo (2-2, 3-2) will be at home Friday to face Fremont (0-4, 0-5)
Central Montcalm 66 Fremont 30
Zane Stroven ran for 148 yards and two touchdowns and Caleb Kooman tossed a pair of TD passes to Riley Krim but in the end it wasn’t enough.
Not nearly enough.
The Hornets built a 28-0 lead before the Pack got on the board and held a 36-14 edge by intermission. While the Fremont offense moved the ball the defense had no answers for the CM offense that scored twice more in the third to make it 50-14.
The Hornets (2-2, 2-3) will host Big Rapids while Fremont (0-4, 0-5) heads east to face Newaygo.
Reed City 54 Tri County 6
The Coyotes piled up 472 yards on the ground and threw for another 100 as they raced past the Vikings to set up next week’s showdown with Chippewa Hills. The Vikings (0-4, 0-5) will host Grant.
Chippewa Hills 27 Grant 7
By Christi Evans
Photos by Chris Lesley
The Tigers came into Remus with determination to turn things around this week. The first quarter ended scoreless as the two teams’ defense was equally strong and neither team was able to find the endzone.
In the second quarter, a 34 yard run from Trent Throop and an 18 yard pass completion from Throop to James Montney got the Tigers within striking distance, but they were unable to convert and the ball was turned over on downs. The Warriors scored three times in the 2nd quarter and successfully completed one 2-point conversion out of three attempts, to make the score 20-0 going into the locker room at halftime.
Grant came out for the second half fired up and halfway through the third quarter, a Warrior pass was batted away by Joshua Wright and scooped up by Jaggar Jenerou. Grant marched the ball downfield on some inspired runs by Throop and Jared Evans, and were knocking on the door when a Throop pass was intercepted. This turnover resulted in another Warriors touchdown.
The Tigers, however, continued to battle as Throop completed passes to Brett Long and Alex Longcore in the fourth to once again get the visitors in position to score, and with 9 minutes left in the game, Jared Evans punched it in from 2 yards out with Tyler Naffziger converting on the PAT.
The Tiger defense shut down the Warriors offense for the remainder of the game. At the end of the night, Chippewa Hills came out on top, 27-7.
Grant did a good job of taking care of the ball, only allowing one turnover, but it was a costly one. They played with guts and grit but unfortunately, some missed scoring opportunities were too much to overcome.
The Tigers, now 3-2 overall and 2-2 in the CSAA Gold, are now in a three-way tie for third place in the conference with Newaygo and Big Rapids. They travel to Howard City to take on Tri County this Friday, September 29th. The Vikings are 1-4 overall and 1-3 in the conference. Chippewa Hills and Reed City are currently sharing the conference title and are headed to a showdown for sole possession of first place, also this Friday, September 29th.
Week 5 Football PreviewBy Ken DeLaat
Newaygo at Big Rapids
The Cardinals possess some significant offensive weaponry and they’ve won two in a row but those wins came against teams with a collective record of 0-8. Grant’s defense contained Mr. Repke and Co.as did Cadillac in the opener and the Lion defense is coming off an inspired performance in last week’s shutout of Central Montcalm.
It’s another tough road game for Coach Van Essen’s Lions and it’s a big one for both squads because whoever loses is going to find the pathway to the postseason pretty formidable.
Looks to be a close one and keeping the Cardinal qb from making big plays will be crucial for the visitors.
Grant at Chippewa Hills
I know, I know, CH sits atop the standings with Reed City and they’re heading for a big showdown next week. We get it, but the Warriors would be wise to remain wary here. The Tigers got taken out early against a rugged Reed City team and Chip Hills has won 3 in a row but they’ve also yielded plenty of points and don’t possess the smothering Coyote defense the Tigers faced last week.
Keeping the hosts off the field is vital and Grant needs to score when given the opportunity. The upside is the Warrior defense can be sporadic and provide those opportunities. If the Tigers can take advantage and shake off last week’s first half…...
Fremont at Central Montcalm
The Packers seem to have found some offense beyond Riley Krim and the Hornet defense has yielded 82 points their past two games while scoring just 8. The Streak is 22 and the date of this game is the 22nd so perhaps the stars have aligned for this one, but who knows which CM team will take the field; the squad who came back to beat TC and gave undefeated Morley Stanwood fits before falling short or the team who got slammed the past two weeks?
Tri County at Reed City
The Vikings are the other team in the Gold without a win but they know how to put points on the board and had close calls against Big Rapids and CM. Winning this one will be tough though because the Coyote defense has held their last three opponents to less than 9 points a game.
Of course there was the 48 Montague dropped on them in the opener but no one has held the potent Wildcat offense under that number this season.
White Cloud at Hesperia
The Proud Panthers have been to the playoffs the past two seasons but this year won’t be number three unless they run the table….a table that includes the four time defending state champs (Muskegon CC) who a have won 29 of their last 30 games...and even then they would need a little luck to get in with 5 wins.
For the Cloud the upside is that the offense has scored their last two times out, however on the flip side, opponents are finding the endzone 7-8 times a game and the Indians don’t possess the kind of offense to keep pace with that. Look for Panthers Kanin Witte and Gerrit Yates to run wild.
Hesperia is working through a disappointing season thus far with two overtime losses and an unexpected yielding of the Golden Trophy after being up 2 touchdowns in the rivalry game with Holton. Despite having an identical record to White Cloud at 0-4 this is not an 0-4 team and they will be ready to show that Friday in front of their fans. Could be a rough night on the road for Coach Hance’s team.
Oh yeah, and it’s Homecoming as well.
Coyotes Strike Early To Defeat Tigers
Grant toppled from unbeaten ranks
By Christi Evans
Photos By Chris Lesley
Grant was rocked back on their heels when Reed City took the opening play from scrimmage all the way to the end zone. Another Reed City TD in the first quarter and an interception in the second and the Coyotes were up 24-0 at the half.
A few good runs and pass receptions from the Tigers sprinkled throughout the game and a TD reception from Trent Throop to Jagarr Jenerou to start the second half were bright spots for the Tigers. Midway through the third James Montney intercepted a Reed City pass and ran it in for the score but it was called back on a penalty.
Grant again had the opportunity to score early in the fourth but the ball was fumbled and was recovered by Reed City. In the end the Coyotes prevailed, handing the host Tigers their first loss of the season.
Reed City improves to 3-1 overall and 3-0 in the CSAA Gold, and Grant drops to 3-1 overall and 2-1 in the Gold. The Tigers will work to rebound with a win on the road next week at Remus Chippewa Hills while Reed City hosts Tri County
Football Roundup: Lions Blast Hornets; Pack, Cloud, Vikes Fall ShortBR 55 Fremont 21
Kane Weilding scored on a 2 yard first quarter run for the Pack and Parker Dalson found the end zone from 3 yards out in the second, but the game reached halftime with the Cardinals holding a 34-14 edge and they chalked up another 3 scores after intermission o cruise to the win.
The Packers got their final points when Dakota Burns pulled in a 7 yard pass from Caleb Koomen. Zane Stroven ran in a pair of two point conversions for the hosts.
Fremont (0-3, 0-4) will travel to Stanton Friday to take on Central Montcalm (1-2, 1-3). The Cardinals (2-1, 2-2) host Newaygo.
Kent City 62 White Cloud 12
The Indians hosted an undefeated Kent City team that has been mowing down opponents with a potent offensive attack. The Eagles found the end zone 9 times and continued their quest for a conference title with the win.
Buck Seabrook was the leading rusher for the Indians with 119 yards on 7 carries while scoring oth touchdowns for the hosts..Seabrook also led the defense with 11 tackles.
Tucker Kooman added 9 tackles for the Indians (0-2, 0-4) who will trave down One Mile Rd to take on the Hesperia Panthers (0-2,0-4).
Newaygo 42 Central Montcalm 0
The Lions stuffed the Hornet offense while the offense put on a show for the hometown fans.
Newaygo (1-2,2-2) will visit Big Rapids (2-1,2-2) Friday.
Chippewa Hills 42 Tri County 20
The Vikings continue to look for their first win of the season after falling to a powerful Warrior team Friday night at home. The schedule doesn’t look to get any easier as TC (0-3,0-4) will head to Reed City to face the Coyotes who share the conference lead with the Warriors.
Newaygo County Cross Teams All Leap Bales of Hay
By Alexis Mercer
In what is a rare occurrence, every cross country team within Near North Now’s coverage area was in the same location on Saturday, September 9. Fremont, Grant, Hesperia, Newaygo, Tri-County and White Cloud all joined in the fun yet competitive event at Fremont Middle School.
The high school course was a standard 3.1 miles (5K). But instead of competing in what is an already difficult endeavor, now the runners were additionally vaulting and climbing over bales of hay. The Fremont Hill and Bale Invitational is a unique, memorable experience; one that all of Newaygo County participated in this year.
Teams were split into two divisions: large and small schools. Fremont, Grant, Tri-County and Newaygo joined other West Michigan teams in the large school division. Hesperia and White Cloud competed in the small school division.
Fremont took the large school division title for the boys, with Fruitport 51 points behind them. Muskegon Reeths-Puffer took first for the girls large school division, followed by Fremont.
In the small school boys division, Montague took the title with Muskegon West Michigan Christian took second. For the girls in the small school division, White Cloud won the title and Libertas Christian took home the runner-up trophy.
For each of the schools within N3’s coverage area, the lead runner and time is listed below. For a full listing of finish times as well as where each school finished in the team standings, visit the following link:
https://www.athletic.net/CrossCountry/Results/Meet.aspx?Meet=130021 - /12803
Large Division Boys First Finisher From Each N3 School
Ben Schmidt – Fremont – 16:43.0 (1st place)
Colten Covington – Grant - 17:09.8 – (3rd place)
Ryan Brummel – Newaygo – 18:05.0 (9th place)
Adam Jason – Howard City Tri-County – 18:07.6 (11th place)
Large Division Girls First Finisher From Each N3 School
Summer Longstreet – Howard City Tri-County – 21:12.7 (3rd place)
Riley Sweet – Fremont – 21:24.6 (4th place)
Sophia Frisbie – Newaygo – 21:38.1 (6th place)
Elizabeth Gates – Grant – 22:58.0 (13th place)
Small Division Boys First Finisher From Each N3 School
Adrian Rodriguez – White Cloud – 18:50.7 (7th place)
Zach Young – Hesperia - 19:47.8 (17th place)
Small Division Girls First Finisher From Each N3 School
Ella Bowman – White Cloud – 23:11.0 (5th place)
Becky Castillo – Hesperia – 24:52.3 (14th place)
Tigers Take Battle of UnbeatensThe Lions brought a 5-0 record including four straight conference wins down the highway to take on the Tiger, a team also undefeated at 3-0 with a pair of ties.
The teams waged a defensive battle and remained scoreless until Miguel Cisneros took a pass from Johann Vega and buried it into the net to give Grant a 1-0 lead that held up until intermission.
In the second Cisneros found the net again courtesy of a Tyler Naffziger feed and soon after Vega scored on an assist from Luis Corona. Newaygo got on the board but another Cisneros goal kept the Lions at bay.
Newaygo has a good team,” said Tiger Head Coach Ron Wight. “ We knew that we would have to play a good game with few mistakes to win.”
“Our defense played great and Javi Jasso made some nice saves for us in goal.”
Michael Frey finished with 33 interceptions on the night with Alberto Macias notching 23 and Kaden Arsenault and Colin Magin adding 22 apiece.
“We know we have to play at a high level to keep up with the teams in our league,” added Coach Wight.
Tigers, Pack Duel To A Draw Grant and Fremont went at it in CSAA action on Wednesday and the Tigers got on the board first when Johanna Vega took a pass from Tyler Naffziger and buried it into the nets for the goal.
The Packers struck back with a Cole Miller goal for the tie but the Tigers answered quickly with Vega setting up an A.J. Decker score to take the lead.
Fremont grabbed a late opportunity with Bailey Baddis firing in the tying score and the match ended 2-all.
On defense Michael Frey had 41 interceptions for the Tigers followed by Alberto Macias and Kaden Arsenault with 25 apiece. Goalkeeper Javi Jasso finished with 14 saves.
Lions Silence Coyotes 8-0 Angel Guevara continues to find the net for the Lions as he pounded in 4 goals while the defense limited any scoring opportunities for Reed City.
Francisco Rios, Adrian Briones, Chase Pendock, and Mitchell Karrip joined the scoring parade with a goal apiece while Noah Painter dished up 2 assists. Alex Ceja and Rioseach added an assist to the team effort.
“The kids moved the ball well and created opportunities for each other,” said Coach Jason Long.
The Lions move to 4-0 in conference play with a overall record of 7-1.
Lion Conference Streak Continues The Lions pulled off their 3rd straight win in the CSAA with a 4-3 win over Lakeview on Wednesday night. Angel Guevara and Francisco Rios continue to lead the Lion offense as Guevera had 2 goals and Rios 1. Adrian Briones also added a goal and Chase Pendock tallied an assist.
The game was tied late in the second half and it looked like overtime was looming for the teams until Angel Guevara fired in the winning goal with 34 seconds left in the game.
“The guys are playing hard every game and it is showing,” said Coach Jason Long. "They are continuing to work hard and I am excited to see how they keep progressing. We have a tough few weeks ahead of us, but we are looking forward to the challenge.”
Reed City at Grant
The first of the two games that should go a long way in telling the tale of the Tiger season.
Grant has not beaten the Coyotes in the three years since they joined the CSAA and their only win against Reed City came in 2000 when they were co-members of the old WWAC East. Last year the Coyotes were responsible for Coach Darren Geraghty’s first loss by stifling the Tiger offense.
That’s not likely to happen this time around. Grant has a strong o-line and ample weapons in the backfield and should be capable of running with the Coyotes. The defense has provided scoring opportunities for the Tigers and seem to come up with big plays when needed.
The hosts don’t make a lot of mistakes and they need to continue that against a Reed City team that feasts on turnovers.
This should be a close one and it won’t hurt that the game is being played at home since Coyote Country is a tough visit. It’s the last home game until the homecoming rivalry matchup with the guys up the road and a big one at that so the crowd should be pretty pumped.
Could be a classic.
Central Montcalm at Newaygo
The Lions went through the toughest part of their schedule the past two weeks. They played well against Reed City and gave Chip Hills fits before seeing the Warriors take control just before halftime.
This is an interesting matchup. The Lions are building a program and this is a win that could help move toward early success in that program. The Hornets can be a dangerous team but they’re prone to mistakes and have yielded their share of turnovers thus far.
The Lion ‘D’ stopped a couple of crucial drives and handled the Warrior running game pretty well. CM doesn’t have a return guy like Koronte Lowery and Cade Schaeffer isn’t behind center.
It’s the first of three home games in the next four weeks and a ‘W’ in front of the home crowd is always sweet.
Chippewa Hills at Tri County
Cayden Luchies to Kyle Proctor.
Seeing that happen a few times would certainly help the cause.
The Vikings can score and the Warriors can have defensive lapses but they are a strong team on both sides of the ball with speed and size. CH can grind down teams and pile up points.
The Vikings need to keep the ball out of Warrior hands for as long as possible and not get into a scoring race they’re not likely to win. TC fans are looking for their team to put one up on the win column and they’re playing at home but a lot of good things need to happen if the Vikes are to be victorious in this one.
Fremont at Big Rapids
The Pack has scored 6 touchdowns and Riley Krim has 5 of them.
There are other weapons in the Fremont arsenal but the issue has been defense with the team yielding nearly 50 points a game.
Cardinal QB Aaron Repke leads an offense with plenty of speed and quick strike capabilities.
Big Rapid isn’t Reed City on the defensive side and the Pack can likely move the ball a bit more this week but they will have their hands full on defense and will need some big stops to stay in this one.
Kent City at White Cloud
In 1996 White Cloud won a single game. They defeated Kent City when the Indians shared membership in the old NCAA with the Eagles.
This year the Cloud is still searching for win number one but securing that first ‘W’ could be a heady task against a Kent City team that returned a number of key players from last years successful squad. The undefeated Eagles are halfway to a second straight playoff berth and on a conference collision course with Morley Stanwood for a late September game but they are a well coached team unlikely to be distracted from taking care of business along the way.
Tiger V-Ballers Sweep Hornets
Grant played its second league match against the Hornets of Central Montcalm and emerged victorious winning three sets; 25-14, 25-13, 25-13. The win moves Grant to 2-0 in the league and 13-6-5 overall.
Kylie Patton led the team with 10 kills and Olivia Keelean added 9.Nicole Whan put up 24 assists while contributing 3 aces and Taylor Wegener hit for 2 aces.
On defense Wegener had 9 digs, Whan 8 and, Kirstyn Throop and Jill Arends tallied 7 each.
The Tigers travel north Saturday to compete in the Cadillac invitational
Cloud Takes Home The Hardware
The Champs! (photo by Desirae Strait)
The Indians swept through the competition at Saturday’s Zion Christian Invitational without yielding a set until they reached the championship match-up with Godwin Heights.
The Wolverines managed to grab a set but White Cloud emerged as the winner as they capped off the day with the tournament title.
“ I am so proud of the way the girls played and fought throughout the day,” said Coach Desirae Strait.” Our aggressiveness and determination helped bring home the championship.”
Olivia Bowman hit for 27 aces on the day while leading her team in kills (18) and digs (38). Elexis Plotts hit on 14 kills and Bree Watson fired off 11.
Hailey Clifford ruled the net finishing with 17 blocks Madison Seabrook tallied 31 digs and Alexis Strait set up Cloud scorers with 43 assists.
The Indians will be traveling to Holton to take on the Red Devils in a conference tilt Wednesday.
Tigers Face Tough Foes At Fruitport Team finishes day 1-2-2
The Grant Volleyball team faced some rugged competition at the Fruitport Invitational Saturday beginning the day matched up with state ranked Montague. The Tigers managed a split with the Wildcats dropping the first set 21-25 before coming back to secure the draw with a 25-22 win. The second match against another state ranked squad, the Class A powerhouse Gull Lake Blue Devils resulted in a 14-25, 14-25 defeat.
The team bounced back against their next opponent Traverse City West. In what proved to be another tight battle on the day the Tigers took down the Titans (25-22, 26-24) for the win before moving on to finish pool play with the Sailors of Mona Shores. This match ended in a split with each team taking a set by a 25-23 margin.
Advancing as a third place team Grant faced West Ottawa. The Panthers took the first set 25-20 with the Tigers coming back with a 25-19 win to force a third go-round. The teams took it down to the wire with the Panthers edging out Coach Keelean’s squad 15-13.
Forest Hills Northern went home as tournament champs defeating Gull Lake in the finals.
Kylie Patton and Olivia Keelean led the Tigers with 46 kills each for the day. Taylor Wegener added 16 kills and Kendall Wilkerson added 9.
Jill Arends and Keelean both added 4 aces each on the day.
Arends was the dig leader with 44 on the day followed by Keelean with 42.
Nicole Whan at 119 assists for the day and Kylie Patton added 3 blocks.
The Tigers finished the tournament with a record of 1-2-2 on the day and an overall season record of 12-6-5. Their next match will be Tuesday at home against conference rival Central Montcalm.
By Ken DeLaat
Lakeview 49 White Cloud 18
There is no quit in the White Cloud football team vocabulary.
You can take that one to the bank.
This is a team that came into Friday’s game having yet to score this season. A team that has struggled through two mistake-laden contests losing both of them by lopsided scores. A team that would have every reason to doubt themselves and merely strive to somehow get through the season.
But that is not this team.
Playing their first home game the Indians saw a horde of fans came out to support their boys.They stood for the fight song and chanted along with the substantial number of cheerleaders on the sidelines.The crowd of family friends and fans were ready to see their team perform in the home opener.
And despite the final score, despite a rather dismal first half, and despite a few naysayers who as always are eager to point out what (and who) is wrong…..?
Their team did not disappoint.
This is a team thin on players but huge on heart.
It is a team made up of young men who will prevail. Who will likely succeed in life and who will hopefully carry what they are showing on that field throughout their lives.
I took a seat in the booth as the inimitable Jim Jones opened the season as he has done for many years announcing the beginning of the home football season to a cheering crowd and after a rousing edition of the National Anthem by a spirited White Cloud Band the game got underway.
Well, for Lakeview it got underway.
The Wildcats scored twice before the Indian defense got on the field it seemed, as less than 3 minutes into the game the visitors held a 13-0 lead. After another 3 and out by the hosts the Wildcats, led by their double threat quarterback Jacob Cole, put together a more sustained drive and with a 2 point conversion it was 21-0.
The next possession the Indians began to show a little life when Kevin Arnold hit Eric Plotts for the team’s first positive yardage and a first down.
Then the next play a fumble yielded the ball back to the Wildcats just before the end of the quarter and Lakeview used the first play of the second to make it 28-0
By halftime the Cats had found paydirt twice more and the teams headed to intermission with the Cloud still not on the scoreboard this season and the Silver contending visitors tallying 42 to make the second half a running clock.
Then midway through the third and down 49-0 Arnold dodged a couple of defenders who had been in his face all night and rifled a pass to Plotts who scampered down the sidelines and gave White Cloud their first points of the year.
The crowd went crazy as did the sidelines. The place erupted as if their team had just clinched a trip to Ford Field. Players chest bumped high and low fived and patted their teammates on the back taking in what it was like to succeed if only briefly.
Then they went back to work.
They would score twice more both on passes as an inspired o-line, some rugged rushing yards from sophomore Alex Doke and a bit of effective scrambling gave Arnold some room to throw.
And throw he did, finding Derek Moore twice for scoring strikes to give the Indians 18 on the night.
On defense the squad that could not find a way to stop the Wildcats in the first half slowed them down and led by Tucker Kooman kept them at bay enough to give their offense some time on the field.
Perhaps there were a lot of players on the visiting side who were rested in the second half giving some time to players who might not regularly take the field. Lakeview may be looking to next week when the always tough Mohawks of Morley comes to town.
But there were plenty of numbers on the Lakeview side that were the same ones on the field throughout the first half and those three scores and the second half defensive play were the result of a resolute group of young men who were battling on their home turf in front of their fans.
And they did themselves proud.
White Cloud has made it to the playoffs just twice, the last time in 2003. In 2010 they could not even field a team. Including this, the 7th season since the year without football the team has won a total of 6 games in that span including wins over two teams currently playing in the 8-player league.
And things aren’t going to get any easier. Next week Silver powerhouse and playoff contender Kent City rolls into town with a wicked offense and a stifling defense.The Indians will be going at it with a team loaded with talent and numbers. A team that has burned past their first 3 opponents and are on a roll to continue that pattern in the Cloud.
But these players won’t be backing down and they most certainly will not quit.
The fans here remain loyal and they turn out for games, the band has become outstanding and is a true source of school pride, the field with a new track around it is looking good….
And these players are building a legacy that goes far beyond the W’s and L’s in the standings.
They’re showing the kind of resilience, dedication and pride in themselves and their teammates that will serve them well through the years.
In doing so they have earned my utmost respect.
Nice job gentlemen.
Grant 3 Big Rapids 0
The Grant Varsity Volleyball team started its conference play on the road with a 3-0 sweep of Big Rapids.
The Tigers came out strong winning set one 25-5 with 8 kills coming from junior Middle Hitter Kylie Patton. In set two, Grant continued to dominate with strong contributions from Olivia Keelean and Taylor Wegener at the outside hitter positions, winning 25-13. Set three played a little closer, but Grant proved to be the stronger team ending the match with a 25-22 win.
Patton finished with 16 kills, Keelean notched 8 and Taylor Wegener added 5. Jill Arends and Nicole Whan each tallied 13 digs with Whan also leading the team in assists setting up 34 of the team’s 36 kills. Kirtyn Throop led servers with 5 aces and Brooklyn Pressler added 3.
The Tigers, 1-0 in conference play and 11-4-3 overall for the season will be back on the court Saturday when they compete in the Fruitport tournament at Fruitport High School.
The Grant Varsity Volleyball team competed at the Unity Christian Invitational Tuesday August 29th.
In a six team rotation, everyone played everyone and matches consisted of 2 sets to 25, with a 27 point cap. In the first match, Grant lost to Kalamazoo Christian 22-25, 22-25. In match two, Grant lost game one to West Catholic 17-25, but came back to beat West Catholic in game two 25-19. Match three was against Calvin Christian and Grant was victorious 25-17, 25-13. In a hard fought battle against Unity Christian, Grant lost the first set 15-25, but rallied to win the second set 25-23. For the last match of the night, Grant earned a rematch against foe, Saranac, from week one. Grant was victorious again 27-26 and 25-17.
Olivia Keelean led the team with 31 kills, followed by Kylie Patton with 25 and Taylor Wegener with 21. Taylor Wegener also led the team with 34 digs while Nicole Whan added 8 aces for the night. Kylie Patton blocked an astonishing 12 balls for the night as well. The Grant Tigers record moves to 10-4-3.
Grant began their season with a bang competing in two tournaments in two days beginning with the Michigan Volleyball Officials Association gathering in Grand Rapids on Friday.
The Tigers made a strong showing in pool play splitting with Thornapple-Kellogg (24-26, and 25-21), then going on to beat Cedar Springs (25-11, 26-24) and Pewamo-Westphalia (25-23, 25-19).
Emerging as the number 5 seed of the 24 team tournament and facin a rematch with Thornapple-Kellogg in the first round of the Gold Division the Tigers won in two sets (25-21, 25-17)then faced f#2 seeded Comstock Park and won in three sets (23-25, 25-20, 15-5).
The finals matched Grant against Saranac. After splitting the first two sets with identical 25-11 scores . game three proved to be a point for point battle until Saranac pulled away near the end to win 15-10.
Jill Arends scored 8 aces while leading the team in digs with 61 and Kylie Patton chalked up 68 kills.
Taylor Wegener finished with 6 aces 23 kills and 51 digs and Olivia Keelean aced 4, nailed down 44 kills and finished with 45 digs as well. Nicole Whan provided 139 sets for her teammates
Saturday brought round two and the team again grabbed a second place finish Hosted by Allendale, the 8 team tournament began with pool play where Grant defeated Holland (25-21, 26-24) and Allegan (25-9, 25-10), before losing to Kingsley (13-25, 19-25).
Grant advanced to bracket play to compete against host school Allendale and came out victorious (14-25, 25-19, 15-10) then knocked off Zeelan West in straight sets(25-21, 25-14).
This brought Grant to the championship game against pool play foe Kingsley. The Tigers battled point for point, before conceding the match (26-24, 25-20). A strong second place showing leaves Grant Varsity with a record of 8-3-1 on the youn season
Brooklyn Presler fired 6 aces and Kylie Patton registered 45 kills on the day
Taylor Wegener and Olivia Keelean finished with 29 kills apiece while Jill Arends tallied 5 digs and Nicole Whan collected 119 assists