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Lowell intercepts Forest Hills Central’s upset bid

Lowell football coach Noel Dean couldn’t help but smile about Zach Huver’s fourth-quarter game-changing interception.

“I told him to quit smiling that he hadn’t showed me anything yet,” Dean said with his wry smile following Lowell’s 42-24 O-K White Conference win against Forest Hills Central Friday night on Bob Perry Field in Lowell.

Dean not only knew better, but his counterpart, Ranger coach Tim Rogers called it a tide turner.

“The running back leaked out and the quarterback pumped. So I broke toward the back and he threw the football and I was able to get it,” explained Huver. “This was a big win for us. It was a good win.”

The victory was Lowell’s fifth in six tries, improving its league mark to 2-0 with a home date against East Grand Rapids Friday night. The Pioneers suffered their fourth defeat of season against Grand Rapids Christian, 43-24.

Lowell defenders stifle this running attempt by Central’s Zach Walker.

For the upstart Rangers, they are now 4-2 and 1-1 in the league.

“These are 16-18 year old kids and they lost it (poise). The tide turned and they tried to get it all back at once,” Rogers said afterwards. “This was a learning experience against a good football team. We will be back.”

Even Dean agreed with that. “He told me afterwards that they’d see us in a couple of weeks (playoffs),” Rogers said.

Huver’s tide-turning pick came with the Red Arrows trailing 24-21 with 10:47 to play in the fourth quarter. The Red Arrow returned the interception to the Ranger 24 yard line. Two plays later Kanon Dean muscled his way in from the seven yard line, giving

Lowell a 28-24 lead, one it would not relinquish.

Within 30 seconds of the go-ahead score, Kyler Shurlow grabbed a tipped Justin Chopp pass out of the air and raced to the Ranger 31 yard line. This time it too the Red Arrows six plays before Dean blasted it over the goal line from the three, exgtending the Lowell lead to fourat 28-24.

Shurlow did it again a couple minutes later, this time grabbing a tipped Justin Chopp pass out of the air and racing to the Ranger 31 yard line. It took the Red Arrows six plays before Dean balsted it over the goal line from the three, ballooning the Lowell lead to 11 at at 35-24.

“Our defense stuck together and played strong. We were able to stiffen up a couple of things there in the second half,” Huver concluded.

Lowell’s final score of the night was delivered by the defense on a Reed Stormzand 50- yard interception return.

His coach found satisfaction in his clubs poise.

“Our defense played extremely well. “The boys played with enthusiasm and showed great poise out there. I was very impressed,” Dean said.

The Chopp-led Ranger offense started fast, scoring on its opening two,possessions of the game. The first score came on a 20-yard hook-up with Hunter Folkertsma. The second touchdown went 25 yards to Nicholas Guerre.

Lowell matched FHC’ start with a Dean nine-yard scoring burst and the junior later scored on a two yard run, with under two minutes to play in the first quarter.

The Red Arrows took their first lead of the evening in the second quarter when Titan Anderson raced in from 15 yards out, giving the Red Arrows a 21-14 advantage.

Central fought back late in the first half when Guerre scored again. Chopp connected with the FHC receiver on a 16-yard touchdown pass.

Central regained the lead in the third quarter on a 19-yard field goal. It came after having the ball first and goal at the two and not being able to find the end zone.