Photo Credit: Eric Walstra
The South Christian Sailors welcomed Grand Rapids Christian to Byron Center High School for their annual rivalry contest. The 2020 edition would take place with an extra importance, as the teams played in the district semifinals. Stellar play by quarterback Jake DeHaan lifted South Christian to a 21-6 victory in this game.
In the first quarter, it was relatively quiet on both sides of the football. Finally, with five seconds to play in the frame, Trevor Hansen powered across the goal line from one yard out. Nate Brinks booted the extra point to give South Christian an early 7-0 lead.
As the defenses on both sides continued to play strong, the Sailors broke through once again with just under two minutes to go in the half. Jake DeHaan found Eli Smith on a twenty-nine yard touchdown pass to double their lead. Grand Rapids Christian would respond with a score in the closing seconds of the first half as Ronin Russell-Dixon and Brian Hunter connected on a twelve-yard score. The blocked extra point left South Christian’s lead at 14-6 after two quarters of play.
The Sailors would tack on an insurance touchdown in the middle of the fourth quarter. With seven minutes to go, DeHaan and Smith paired up for the second touchdown in this contest. This twenty-yard toss gave the Sailors an insurmountable fifteen point edge.
Jake DeHaan finished this game 9/19 for 194 yards and two touchdowns for the Sailors. Trevor Hansen was the leading rusher for South Christian with 48 yards. Elliot Grashuis was the team’s leading receiver with 132 yards, although he did not find the end zone.
Grand Rapids Christian was haunted by turnovers in this contest. The Sailors recorded five interceptions. Jace DeMann led the way with three interceptions, while both Jared DeHaan and Evan Roedema hauled one in as well.
The Sailors will move on to next week’s district final. They will host the Hamilton Hawkeyes, who enter the game at 4-4. They topped Godwin Heights 10-7 in the first round, and they advanced this week as a result of Unity Christian forfeiting.