BYRON CENTER — For the first time in three games the Greenville football team got down but took the lead and hung on.
The Yellow Jackets spotted the Byron Center Bulldogs 14 points early on but scored 24 unanswered points to win 24-14 Friday night. This came after Greenville (2-2) committed four turnovers in the first quarter.
“The first quarter we fumbled a couple of times and had an interception,” Greenville coach Dave Moore said. “We had a couple opportunities but couldn’t cash in on them.”
After a scoreless first quarter the Bulldogs (1-3) got a seven-yard touchdown run from Garrett Cross. That was the only score of the first half, as Byron Center led 7-0.
“We went into halftime down but we were in striking distance,” Moore said.
But like the previous two games, the opponent got a two-touchdown lead when Cross went 29 yards for a 14-0 lead.
“We gave up a touchdown, and give the kids credit,” Moore said of his team. “Our kids came back, fought hard and didn’t quit. That was a huge comeback. Our kids showed a lot of determination.”
Greenville quarterback Curtis Heppe hit Tyler Rasmussen on a 10-yard strike midway through the third quarter, then Levi Helms ran for a touchdown from eight yards out to tie the score.
Caleb Wolfe kicked a 29-yard field goal to give Greenville the lead. The Jackets salted the game away with a Helms 37-yard run.
“I think it’s a big turning point for us,” Moore said. “I was very proud of the kids for how they responded (Friday night).”
Moore said he couldn’t pinpoint one thing that turned the Jackets around.
“It’s such a combination of things,” he said. “Good leadership out there, the kids put so much effort into that. We started clicking and got some momentum and once we started to go it was great.”
Helms finished with 17 carries for 75 yards and the two scores. Heppe was 12-of-20 passing for 105 yards, a touchdown and an interception. Greg Krusniak made five catches for 75 yards.
Next up for the Jackets is a trip to Cedar Springs to face the Red Hawks, who lost to Zeeland West 52-8 in a game that saw the Dux score all 52 points in the first half.
“That’s a huge game. I’m really pleased we’re playing them (Cedar Springs),” Moore said. “It’s so close. We should be playing them. It’s such a huge game. Rivalry yes, but it’s everything.”