Willis, turnovers too much for Greenville


By Bruce Bentley • Last Updated 3:54 pm on Monday, September 12, 2011

Corey Willis of Holland returns a kickoff for positive yardage against Greenville Friday night.

GREENVILLE — It took Holland just under three minutes in the second quarter to open a four-touchdown lead and secure its third straight football victory.
Dutch quarterback Corey Willis scored six total touchdowns and his team forced five turnovers in an impressive 56-35 win over the Greenville Yellow Jackets on Friday night at Black Field.
Holland — fresh off an upset of state ranked East Grand Rapids last week — showed no signs of slowing down, despite worries from its coach.
“I was worried about a letdown and about Greenville,” Holland coach Shawn McManus said. “I watched them on tape. They are physical at the point of attack, tough kids and they play hard. That worried me greatly.”
Holland jumped out to a 14-7 lead after the first quarter with Willis scoring on runs of 44 and 57 yards.
The Yellow Jackets tied the game with 7:34 left in the half on a 1-yard run by Chris Mickey. The touchdown was set up with a 38-yard catch by Jordan Powell from Curtis Heppe on fourth and nine from the 39-yard line.
Willis scored for the third time with 2:54 remaining in the half for a 21-14 advantage.
Then the Dutch defense took over.
A Greenville fumble resulted in a fourth Willis touchdown with 1:37 left in the first half. Just 20 seconds later, Willis intercepted a pass and ran 36 yards for his fifth touchdown.
“That kid (Willis) is tremendously talented. He’s as good as anyone we’ve faced since we’ve been here,” Greenville coach Dave Moore said.
With 13 seconds left in the half, Ben Welmers took an interception 56 yards for a touchdown, making the score 42-14 at the half.
“At the end of the first half we gave them a couple of scores,” Moore said. “Those kind of mistakes are tough to come back from.
Greenville opened the second half with an interception by Greg Krusniak. That set up a 2-yard touchdown run by Mickey to pull the Yellow Jackets within 42-21.
Holland answered with two more scores to put the game out of reach. Jordan Powell and Sam Loding added late scores for Greenville.
“I asked our kids to play hard in the second half and I though they really did,” Moore said. “I’m proud of them for that.”
Willis finished the night with 15 carries for 225 yards rushing and five touchdowns. He was 7-for-10 passing for 122 yards and one interception. He accounted for 347 of Holland’s 418 yards.
“We have some pretty good blockers,” McManus said. “He (Willis) is able to get through there and get into space. We know if we get him into space he is pretty electric.”
Curtis Heppe finished with 189 yards passing and three interceptions for Greenville. Powell had 126 total yards and a score. Loding had 58 yards rushing and a score.
“We will regroup. We have to keep our heads high and get over this loss,” Greenville junior Colt Harrington said. “We will come back together for next week.”
Holland (3-0) will travel to Northview on Friday. Greenville (2-1) will face Grand Rapids Union next Saturday at Houseman Field.

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