The Reeths-Puffer Rockets have been a phenomenal surprise early in the 2022 campaign. On Friday night, they took their 2-0 record to Hackley Stadium, where they squared off with the perennial power Muskegon Big Reds. Puffer gave Muskegon everything they had, before falling apart late, 28-20.

Muskegon scored almost instantly, before Puffer’s Brody Johnson responded with a rushing score. Johnson’s second touchdown run, a 30-yard carry, put Puffer ahead 14-7. M’Khi Guy would provide the equalizer with a quarterback keeper. A CJ Ivy interception in the end zone preserved a 14-14 draw at the break.

With just over four minutes left in the third quarter, Muskegon took their first lead. Jakob Price bulldozed his way into the end zone, a 1-yard run. This would be the lone score in the third quarter, with Muskegon ahead by seven.

Puffer responded early in the final frame with a pass from Brady Ross to Brody Johnson. Their 4-yard score brought the Rockets within a point. The tying extra point was unsuccessful, leaving the Big Reds ahead 21-20. Wanyai Johnson added some insurance with a rushing touchdown, and the Rockets’ fun was over.

It was a balanced attack for Puffer, with 108 rushing and 123 passing. Brady Ross was 13/19 passing, while Tatye Vanderleest added 66 receiving yards. Brody Johnson turned his 12 carries into 110 yards and two scores. Defensively, the Rockets were led by Caden Bolduc and his 15 tackles.

Next week, Muskegon will face Zeeland East. Reeths Puffer will face 3-0 Union.