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The South Christian Sailors, defending State Champions in Division 4, moved a step closer to their return trip to Ford Field. This Friday, facing upstart Big Rapids, their offense exploded for 55 points. They needed this offensive outburst to come away with a win in a 55-35 shootout.

Early on in this game, South Christian seized total control. In the first quarter, Carson Vis tossed a pair of touchdowns. Both scores went to Jake Vermaas, and the 7 and 10 yard scores put the Sailors ahead by 14. They were able to extend their lead to 21 just seconds into the second frame with a 25-yard touchdown run by Charlie Schreur.

Big Rapids would respond on their next drive, as they got a big play of their own. Riley Vennix aired it out, finding Kaleb Dubowski for a 65-yard touchdown strike.

South Christian would halt any momentum the Cardinals gained from that score, as they tacked on three additional touchdowns. Vis tossed his third touchdown of the night when he found Noah Funk on a 20-yard play. Schreur followed that up with a short touchdown plunge. Finally, with 26 seconds left until the half, Jake Vermaas stepped in front of a Vennix pass and raced 35 yards for a return touchdown.

Trailing 41-7, Big Rapids was able to get things going a bit more in the second half. Vennix threw for four additional touchdowns to jump start the Big Rapids’ offense. He found Garrett Foster (24 yards and 15 yards), Dubowski (75), and Wyatt Skiera (18) to get Big Rapids closer in this game.

South Christian used their ground game to ice this one, with two second half rushing scores. Schreur completed the hat trick with a 9-yard carry, while Kayd Coffman debuted in the end zone after a 53-yard burst.

Vis finished this game 12/19 passing for 194 yards and 3 scores. Vis added 42 rushing yards on five carries. Charlie Schreur was South’s leading rusher with 104 yards on 17 carries. Jake Vermaas’ 7 catches, 141 yards and 2 scores paced the receiving room.

In defeat, Riley Vennix had a strong night. He completed 22/35 passes, tallying 404 passing yards and two touchdowns. Kaleb Dubowski faced the receivers with 200 yards, while Garrett Foster added 111.

Next week, South Christian will advance to the semifinals. Their opponent will be the undefeated Portland Raiders. The winner of that game will get a Thanksgiving weekend road trip to Ford Field.