The Central Montcalm Hornets and Newaygo Lions began their 2021 CSAA-Gold slates on Thursday night over in Newaygo. The host Lions battled hard, but in the end, Central Montcalm’s mid-game run was too much, resulting in a 29-13 victory.

In the first quarter, the offenses were quiet. The lone scoring play came on defense in the closing seconds of the frame. Newaygo’s quarterback Remi Gracik was tackled in the end zone for a safety. This gave Central Montcalm a 2-0 lead after twelve minutes.

The Lions pulled out some trickery in the second quarter, and the big play gave them the lead. Gracik tossed the ball to Remy Wells, and Wells pitched it to Jayden Joseph. Joseph was off to the races, and he completed the 72-yard hook-and-ladder play with a touchdown. Central Montcalm regained the lead in the last minute of the first half, as Kaleb Crooks kept the football for a 5-yard touchdown. This score gave the Hornets a 9-6 halftime advantage.

Crooks would score again early in the third quarter, as the 1-yard quarterback keeper went for six Central Montcalm points. Just moments later, Isaac Johnson disrupted the Lions’ offensive attack, stepping in front of a pass and returning it for a 25-yard score.

Ahead 22-6, Central Montcalm would score one more time in the beginning of the fourth quarter. Mitch Herald had an 18-yard touchdown run that extended the Hornets’ lead to twenty-three points. Grant Harkness would stop the scoring drought by giving Newaygo one more touchdown, a 2-yard run.

Isaac Johnson, in addition to his interception touchdown, eclipsed the 100-yard rushing plateau once again. Grant Harkness recorded 105 yards rushing in the second half alone. Newaygo was ultimately doomed by four turnovers, which led to twenty Central Montcalm points.

Next week, the 2-0 Hornets will continue CSAA-Gold play at home against Fremont. Newaygo, 0-2 after this defeat, will look for their first win on the road next week. The Lions will travel to Big Rapids to face the Cardinals.