The Byron Center Bulldogs and East Grand Rapids Pioneers have played many competitive matchups in recent years. Friday was no exception, as it went down to the wire. A fourth quarter touchdown by the Bulldogs, and a successful kick, gave Byron Center a 20-19 victory.
In the first quarter, East Grand Rapids raced out to a quick lead. The Pioneers got a 26-yard touchdown run from Preston Bergstrom to jump out to a 7-0 lead. Later in the frame, Ian MacKeigan added to the advantage with a 4-yard touchdown. A failed two-point try left the Pioneers ahead 13-0.
Byron Center trimmed the deficit in the second quarter, with a single touchdown. Blake Ottow reeled off a 26-yard run, and Easton Wycher booted the PAT. The Bulldogs would trail 13-7 at the half.
Brady Breit gave the Bulldogs their equalizer, when he fielded the opening kick at his own 10-yard line. Just seconds later, Breit had outran all of the Pioneers’ tacklers and found himself celebrating in the end zone with his teammates. A missed extra point left the score knotted at 13.
East Grand Rapids would take the lead late in the third, when Scott Millman carried the football on a 2-yard scamper. The Pioneers lined up for the two-point try, and they were swarmed in the backfield. This left the door open for Byron Center, down 19-13.
In the final quarter, Byron Center found their way back to the end zone. Hunter Schichtel kept the football on a 4-yard run. The Bulldogs were able to pick up the conversion, and take home the victory in a 20-19 game.
With the victory, Byron Center improves to 4-2 on the season. They will look to continue their three-game win streak next week, as they face Northview. East Grand Rapids, meanwhile, slides to 2-4 with their defeat. They will take on Forest Hills Northern next Friday.