**ARTICLE BY LIEN VELDBOOM**
The Maroons hosted the Lakers of Spring Lake for their homecoming game for the 2022 season. The grills were sizzling, kids were running, and alumni gathered. Holland Christian was coming off a tough loss handed to them by West Catholic. The Lakers entered the game looking for their first win of the season within the OK Blue. Spring Lake looked to be on their way to victory, however, the Maroons scored late in the 4th to take the win, 21-20.
The first quarter was slow for both the Maroons and the Lakers with only one late score from Spring Lake. It was off a pick-six where the Lakers defense returned it off the Maroon’s failure to complete a pass. The extra point was unsuccessful.
The action ramped up in the second quarter when both teams could post 14 points apiece. The Maroons scored early in the second when Eli Boyce found Connor Smits for a 13-yard pass. Spring Lake responded with a touchdown of their own about halfway through the quarter. Reid Grimmer spotted Jackson Lemmen for a 9-yard touchdown pass. The minutes were winding down in the second half when the same duo, Boyce and Smits connected again for a 23-yarder. To close out the half, the Lakers were able to complete one final drive ending the half with a 20-14 lead. It was again Grimmer finding Lemmen in the endzone for a 23-yard score of their own.
After the trip to the locker room, it seemed the defenses figured out how to put a stop to the scoring frenzy. The third quarter and most of the fourth were all defense with no team being able to find the back of the endzone. The clock read 2:41 when the Maroon offense was able to break through the Laker’s defense and score the final touchdown of the game. Boyce threw his hat-trick score to Ethan Abberger for 45-yards. It was tied 20-20 on homecoming night for Holland Christian. The ability to win in regulation was to be determined by the foot of Caden VanHuis who was 2/2 on the night already. The kick was up, and it was good. The Maroons took the lead and finished the game ahead, 21-20.
The Lakers relied heavily on their running game with 180 yards coming from six different players. They were led by Bryce Collins who had 63 yards averaging about 3.7 per carry. Holland Christian struggled on the ground, but Eli Boyce was able to take charge and throw for 260 yards. He threw for 3 touchdowns in total.
Next week, the Lakers will look to gain their first win in conference play as they host the Fruitport Trojans. They are coming off a big win against the Coopersville Broncos. The Maroons will look to carry this momentum into next week as they travel to Coopersville who currently sit 1-2 within the conference.