The Unity Christian Crusaders have played football since 2003. Despite tremendous playoff success, including a State Championship in 2018, the conference title had always alluded them. In their seventeenth year on the gridiron, they were able to check that off the list after taking down rival Allendale 42-6.
In the first quarter, the ‘Saders started the scoring with a twenty-nine yard touchdown run by Drew Chandler. They would double their lead before the end of the frame with a seventeen yard pass that paired up Chandler and Paul VanderPloeg. Two unsuccessful conversion attempts left it 12-0 in favor of Unity after twelve minutes.
There was only one touchdown in the second quarter. Drew Chandler rushed the football for six yards and a touchdown. Abraham Rappuhn rushed for a two-point conversion. This brought the lead to twenty points as the teams headed to halftime.
Paul VanderPloeg got the offense rolling in the third quarter when he rushed one yard for a touchdown. The two-point conversion attempt was unsuccessful. Later in the third, Malekhi Obande broke free for a sixty-one yard touchdown run. The VanderPloeg rush made it 34-0 as the third quarter came to a close.
Lukas Kuiper finally got Allendale on the board when he ran the football five yards into the end zone. This would be the lone touchdown for Allendale. Abraham Rappuhn would add one more touchdown for Unity when he ran sixteen yards to the end zone. The two-point run by Micah Bush brought the game to its final tally of 42-6.
Offensively, the ‘Saders outgained Allendale 355-222. This was led in large part by a 338-202 rushing advantage. Malekhi Obande led the way with 116 for Unity, while Drew Chandler added 94 on ten carries. Chandler also caught a seventeen yard pass, Unity’s only completion, for a touchdown.
Allendale was led by Cole Dipiazza, who ran 31 times for 155 yards. Jordan Silvis added ten tackles in bolstering the defensive efforts.
It should also be noted that this is both Coach Craig Tibbe and the program’s 100th all-time victory, a feat celebrated on Unity Christian Twitter after the game.
Congrats UC Football & Coach Tibbe pic.twitter.com/jCnTT0y1og
— Unity Christian (@UCSaders) October 24, 2020
Next week, both schools will start their playoff journeys. The locations and opponents of these games will be announced Sunday.