Though Olivet dominated the ground game for three full quarters, picking up 310 rushing yards, the only stat that matters is the final score and the final score of the night came courtesy of Schoolcraft’s Benny Clark, whose two-point conversion with 1:04 remaining gave the host Eagles a 21-20 lead and helped Schoolcraft to its only win in five tries against its Kalamazoo Valley Association rival.
“That was a long time coming, it was the first time we beat Olivet,” Schoolcraft (3-0) coach Terry Haas said.
It was also a long time coming for the host Eagles to gain an advantage on the scoreboard as Olivet raced out to a 17-7 lead behind tailback Nick Coolidge, who ran for a game high 257 yards on 35 carries.
But before Coolidge and his teammates could celebrate his performance, Schoolcraft quarterback Jeffery Scott found wideout Trevor Stoddard on a slant pattern in the back right corner of the end zone to tie the game and set up Cook’s winning conversion.
“That was a great catch in the corner,” Olivet coach Dean Peters said. “You got to do it when the pressure is on, give them credit.”
Olivet (2-1) opened the second half with a dominating 9 minute 58 second drive that was capped when Coolidge dove for two yards over the Schoolcraft defensive line, picking up his second of two touchdowns on the night and giving Olivet a 10-point advantage.
The senior had five rushes of 10 yards or more including an electrifying 43-yard second quarter scamper that knotted the game at 7-7.
Coolidge got the job done with his foot as well as his legs as his second quarter field goal gave Olivet a 10-7 lead heading into the half. He would hit another from 32 yards out with 3:33 remaining in the game to extend the Olivet lead to 20-13.
But in the end the night belonged to Clark and his Eagle teammates. The speedy senior tailback was kept mostly in check through three quarters but he opened things up in the fourth finishing with 105 yards rushing on 11 carries.
The loss puts Olivet one game behind Schoolcraft and 3-0 Pennfield in the KVA.