The Unity Christian Crusaders and Holland Christian Maroons entered Friday’s first round game on completely different paths. Unity Christian was unbeaten, while Holland Christian was unable to record a victory in the regular season. Both members of the OK Blue, these two were unable to meet in the regular season due to the cancellation of the first three weeks. In the meeting seven weeks later than originally scheduled, Unity Christian spared no offensive fireworks in a 57-7 victory.
Two minutes into this game, Malekhi Obande started the scoring with a forty yard touchdown run. Just sixteen seconds later, Cam Chandler broke off a fifteen yard run to give the ‘Saders a 14-0 lead. After another defensive stop, Paul VanderPloeg and Drew Chandler paired up on a thrilling pass play that spanned seventy-nine yards of the field for a touchdown. Holland Christian would score on the final play of the first quarter when Reeves Taylor and Ben Nelson connected for a thirty-two yard touchdown. It was 22-7 ‘Saders after the first twelve minutes.
In the second stanza, Unity added a pair of touchdowns. Obande got things started once again with a thirteen yard touchdown with just under five minutes to play in the half. Two minutes later, Cam Chandler used his legs for a sixteen yard touchdown. Unity Christian would take the 38-7 lead into the locker room.
Kobe Beute’s twenty-seven yard touchdown run gave Unity a large enough lead to start the running clock with 10:35 to go in the third quarter. This limited their possessions the rest of the way, but it did not deter them from scoring. The Crusaders got two rushing touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Abraham Rappuhn rumbled for a six-yard touchdown and Ethan VanOtterloo darted through the Maroons defense for a thirty-four yard touchdown to give the team a 50-point victory.
Next week, the ‘Saders will take their unbeaten record into battle once more with a chance to advance to the district finals. Standing in their way will be Hamilton, who took down Godwin Heights 10-7 on Friday night. In the regular season meeting between the OK Blue foes, Unity Christian beat Hamilton 50-16, the ‘Saders third-closest contest this year.