Senior running back Isaac Cloward had a stellar debut for St. Philip on Friday night as he led the Tigers to a 35-8 victory over Kingston with 142 yards rushing and three touchdowns on 19 carries. The senior transfer from Lakeview also had an interception and seven tackles.
Kingston, a school located in Michigan’s thumb area that also plays in the 8-man division, is a three-hour bus ride from Battle Creek. But St. Philip head coach Dave Downey said his Tigers showed no ill effects from the ride.
“It’s tough to travel three hours and win a game. I was pleased with our focus and intensity,” said Downey. “Our goal was to head back to Battle Creek 1-0 and we did that.”
Senior quarterback Alex Doyle connected with wide receiver Hunter Haley for a 53-yard touchdown pass as time expired before halftime, giving the Tigers a 21-8 lead at the intermission.
Trevor Searls led the St. Philip defense with eight tackles and David Downey had six tackles. Downey also kicked four extra-point conversions and caught a 2-point conversion from Doyle. Sam Lehouiller and Will Conkey recovered fumbles for the Tigers’ defense.
Pennfield 40, (at) K-Hackett 6: The visiting Panthers prevailed over the Fighting Irish for the 23rd straight time in earning the season-opening KVA triumph, leading 27-0 at the half. J.J. Clements scored on runs of 2 and 5 yards for Pennfield, Nick Burnett scored on runs of 15 and 3 yards, Brandun Rugg had a 42-yard TD burst and Dawan Smith ran one in from 39 yards out. Smith finished with 73 yards rushing, and as a team, Pennfield ran for 299 yards. Quarterback Jake Grimes was 5-of-8 passing for 131 yards. Defensively, Ethan Everett had eight tackles, Rugg had six tackles and an interception.
(At) Stevensville-Lakeshore 56, Marshall 14: Quarterback Danny Welke was 6-for-21 passing for 128 yards and two touchdowns and an interception as the Redhawks opened their season with a setback. Tyler Horn ran for 61 yards on five carries for Marshall.
Olivet 37, (at) Maple Valley 6: Rob Funk threw TD passes of 62 yards to Nate Barnes, 64 yards to Shane Loney and 61 yards to Tate McCarn in the second quarter as the visiting Eagles cruised to this season-opening KVA win. Loney also scored on a 10-yard run in the first quarter, Dylan Coolidge had a 14-yard scoring run and Russell Riley kicked a 29-yard field goal. Maple Valley’s TD came in the fourth quarter on a 3-yard run by Beau Johnson. Austin Smith had eight tackles, Dustin Holden had seven and a fumble recovery. Dylan Kennedy had six tackles and a sackfor the Lions.
(At) Quincy 36, Bronson 0: Jimmy King made the most of his touches, scoring four touchdowns (14, 14, 23, 37 yards) on eight carries to lead Quincy to a season-opening win. King finished with 90 yards on the ground. Quinn Eifred led Quincy’s shutout effort on the defensive side of the ball with six tackles. Scott Wyant led Bronson with 81 yards rushing.
Climax-Scotts 34, (at) Athens 0: Logan Simmons led his team with 82 yards on 14 carries, including a 20-yard touchdown run, as Climax-Scotts posted the shutout. Samuel Eshuis had 57 yards on 11 carries with two scores and Cody Moody also had two rushing TDs for the Panthers. Devan Kinney led Athens on defense with 11 tackles and a blocked extra point.
(At) Bellevue 33, Potterville 6: Bellevue jumped out to a 27-0 halftime lead and never looked back. Tyler Lane was all over the field for the Broncos as he rushed for 94 yards and a score, had a 42-yard interception return for a touchdown and a blocked punt. The Broncos’ Cole Madry also had a nice all-around game. He had two receiving TDs and also had nine tackles and three sacks on the defensive side. Darren Summers led Bellevue with 99 yards rushing and a score. Ethan Bloch had 11 tackles, four for a loss.
(At) Portage Northern 33, Gull Lake 0: This game was tied 0-0 after one quarter of play and Gull Lake trailed just 13-0 at the half, but the Blue Devils were outscored 19-0 in the second half as they dropped their first game of the season. Gull Lake’s leading rusher was Seth Eldridge with 60 yards on 16 carries and T.J. Haase with 40 yards on 14 carries. Nick Miller led the Blue Devils’ defense .
Burr Oak 20, (at) Tekonsha 16: The host Indians shut down Burr Oak after halftime, but came up short in their Southern Michigan 8-Man season opener. Isaac Mead scored on a 52-yard run and Justin Evans ran in a 2-point conversion in the first quarter for Tekonsha, and Evans scored on a 9-yard run and Jeremy Scheere had the 2-point run for the Indians in the fourth period. Scheere had eight tackles and an interception defensively, Travis Hurley had eight tackles.
White Pigeon 23, (at) Union City 12: Aaron Watson scored on a 72-yard run and Jason Means on a 1-yarder in the Chargers’ season-opening setback. Watson led Union City with 144 yards on 19 carries. Nate Champion had eight tackles for the Chargers.