The Jenison Wildcats struggled in their season opener, failing to get going against Forest Hills Central until the game was well in hand. In their second game of 2021, they tried their hand against another Forest Hills team, the Northern Huskies. With a new opponent, they also achieved a new result, as the Wildcats cruised to a 34-3 victory on Thursday night.
In the first quarter, Jenison scored the lone touchdown. Caleb Dean, the Wildcats’ lead offensive weapon, broke off an 80-yard sprint to the end zone. Dean would add the extra point, and Jenison led 7-0 after twelve minutes.
Luke Silvernale would put FHN on the scoreboard in the middle of the second quarter, as the Huskies’ senior booted a 24-yard field goal. Jenison would quickly respond with another big play, as Carter VanManen connected with Caleb Dean on a 77-yard passing play. An unsuccessful PAT left the Wildcats ahead 13-3 at halftime.
Caleb Dean’s third touchdown of the game opened the second half scoring. He was off to the races once again, and 60 yards later, Dean was in the end zone. VanManen converted the two-point try, and Jenison led 21-3. Riley Russo would join the Jenison touchdown party with his own rushing score, the 30-yarder extending the ‘Cats lead to twenty-five.
In the fourth quarter, Jenison would score one final touchdown. Jasaiah Beamon, the junior ball carrier, powered across the goal line for a 2-yard touchdown. Caleb Dean would boot the extra point, the final scoring play for Jenison.
Jenison’s defense thwarted every opportunity that the Huskies had in this game. Chris VanOpstall led the way with four sacks, anchoring the front line.
Now 1-1 on the year, Jenison will begin OK Red play next week with a road trip to Grand Haven. Forest Hills Northern slides to 1-1 with the defeat, and they will begin OK White play with a game against Lowell next Friday.