KENTWOOD, Mich. (WOOD) — A matchup between two unbeaten teams came down to the wire, but it was Grand Rapids Catholic Central that came out on top.
The Cougars (6-0) never lead in regulation, but defeated the Grand Rapids South Christian Sailors (5-1) 28-27 in overtime Friday night to win the O-K Gold Conference title. Catholic Central’s running game carried them to victory, as each of the team’s four touchdowns came on the ground.
South Christian jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the first quarter, with Senior Quarterback Ty Rynbrandt completing a pass to Senior Elliott Grashuis. However, Catholic Central was able to block the extra point attempt.
Later in the second quarter, the Sailors expanded their lead with a 41-yard touchdown run by Senior Trevor Hansen. Sam Meengs then faked the extra point and ran the ball in for a two-point conversion, giving South Christian a 14-0 lead, a score they’d take into halftime.
GRCC struck back on their first possession in the second half, with Senior Nick Hollern scoring on a 13-yard touchdown rush. The Cougars would then block Rynbrandt’s punt, taking possession at the Sailors 32-yard line. This set up a touchdown rush for Junior Quarterback Joey Silveri.
South Christian would regain the lead in the fourth quarter, with Junior Jack Schreur hauling in a Rynbrandt pass for a touchdown. But not long after, Hollern tied the game for the Cougars with a 75-yard touchdown run.
In overtime, Rynbrandt completed a touchdown pass to Senior Eli Smith, however the extra point was bobbled.
Joey Silveri took the first play of GRCC’s drive for a touchdown, and the Cougars won the game on the extra point.
“A lot of toughness, a lot of guys stepping up, a lot of our older classmen that have been here before, we relied on them. They came out and got it going,” Catholic Central Head Coach Todd Kolster said. “Just a lot of unselfish play, which I’m most proud of.”
The Cougars finished the game with 255 total yards, with 233 of them coming on the ground. Hollern had 12 carries for 136 yards, and Silveri had 22 carries for 97 yards. Catholic Central held the Sailors to 95 rushing yards, allowing 258 total yards.
“Our defense played really, really well,” Kolster said. “To give up that few of points to an offense like that, it was a great team win.”