GEORGETOWN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Jenison scored for the first time in three seasons against Forest Hills Central Thursday, then nearly pulled off the season opening upset. Forest Hills Central needed a spectacular interception by Evan Metaj with less than a minute to play to escape Jenison with a 21-19 win.
Forest Hills Central has big hopes for this season coming off a school record 12-1 mark in 2017. Coach Tim Rogers made it clear to his team after the game that they will need to improve to make another deep postseason run.
“We dodged a bullet,” he said. “We’ve got a lot of development ahead of us.”
“It doesn’t matter what we did last year,” Forest Hills Central quarterback Luke Majick said. “I think the sky is the limit for this team. We just have to stay focused.”
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The Rangers struggled all night to stop Jenison quarterback Kyle Nott. He scored all three of Jenison’s touchdowns while rushing for 207 yards and throwing for 45 yards.
Jenison QB Kyle Nott scores. 2-pt attempt fails. A lot of time left…
Forest Hills Central 21
6:02 4th Q@WOODTV @Joe_Aulisio #Frenzy8 pic.twitter.com/F8Sa96nhdG— Luke Stier (@LukeStier) August 24, 2018
“Their quarterback, you can’t prepare for that,” Rogers said. “He almost single-handedly brought us down tonight.”
Majick countered for the Rangers by scoring once through the air and once on the ground. He passed for 122 yards and rushed for 165.
Forest Hills Central survived because of some key plays.
Late in the first half, senior star Tate Hallock ran for a first down on a fake punt. That conversion led to Majick finding Hayden Sergeant for a 19-yard touchdown pass, giving Forest Hills Central a 14-7 halftime lead.
FHC 19-yard TD just before halftime. Luke Majick to Hayden Sarjeant.
Forest Hills Central 14
0:28 2nd Q@WOODTV @Joe_Aulisio #Frenzy8 pic.twitter.com/Fr7XnZNqXQ— Luke Stier (@LukeStier) August 23, 2018
The next key play came on special teams. Late in the third quarter, the Rangers blocked an extra point attempt to preserve a 14-13 lead.
Jenison had one final chance starting at their own 21-yard line, down 21-19, with 1:18 left. That’s when Metaj dove toward the sideline to intercept Nott, grabbing the ball just before it hit the turf.
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Jenison looked much-improved under new Head Coach Rob Zeitman. The Wildcats were shut out by Forest Hills Central the past two seasons and haven’t made the playoffs since 2003.
Coach Rogers had nothing but good things to say about Jenison.
“Coach Zeitman and his staff are very good and had them well-prepared,” he said.
- Aug. 30: Jenison @ Northview
- Sept. 7: Jenison vs. Fruitport
- Aug. 30: Forest Hills Central vs. West Ottawa
- Sept. 7: Forest Hills Central vs. Grandville