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Drift Football Men's Brady Elite Patriots White Fashion Jersey Tom 12 Ferris State quarterback Jayru Campbell celebrates after scoring his first rushing touchdown as a Bulldog. (Pioneer photo/Maxwell Harden)

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BIG RAPIDS — The new-look Ferris State football team started the 2018 season with a bang.

The Bulldogs — with new starting quarterback Jayru Campbell and a host of new starters on defense — trounced East Stroudsburg  49-17 at Top Taggart Field on Thursday.

The 6-5, 215-pound quarterback made his presence known early and often, connecting with receiver Dion Earls for an early touchdown pass and later scoring on a touchdown run of his own to give the Bulldogs a 14-0 lead in the opening minutes of the first quarter.

The young defense stepped up and made plays. Safety DeShaun Thrower recovered a fumble and returned it 51 yards for a touchdown to give Ferris a 21-0 lead after one quarter of play.

The Bulldogs never looked back and scored 21 points in the second quarter to lead 42-3 at halftime.

Jayru Campbell finished his debut completing 7 of 14 passes for 204 yards and one touchdown and tallied 12 carries for 100 yards and one touchdown. Backup quarterback Travis Russell, Marvin Campbell, and Davontae Harrington had rushing touchdowns for the Bulldogs.

Earls had five catches for 114 yards and two touchdowns on the night. On defense, Austin Edwards led the team in tackles with six.

The Bulldogs (1-0) host Findlay next Saturday.

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Reed City 44, Fremont 6

FREMONT — Try as they might, the Packers had no answer for Phillip Jones-Price and the Coyotes.

Jones-Price finished the game with eight carries for 252 yards and four touchdowns as the Coyotes ran away with a 44-6 road win over Fremont on Thursday.

“It was a good win to start out conference play,” head coach Monty Price said. “We came out and played hard. We’re proud of them.”

Drift Football Men's Brady Elite Patriots White Fashion Jersey Tom 12 The Coyotes jumped out to a 31-0 lead after the first quarter and led 44-0 at halftime.

Zack Wirgau tallied three carries for 85 yards and one touchdown, while Jackson Price finished 1 of 1 passing for 31 yards and a touchdown pass to Brandon Major.

On defense, the Coyotes were led by Whitehead with 11 tackles and Kody S. Kailing had eight tackles, while Connor Agan and Preston Johnson added six tackles apiece. Jeffrey Samuels had an interception for the Coyotes.

Reed City (2-0,1-0) hosts Grant next Friday.

Chippewa Hills 26, Newaygo 21

Newaygo — Ozaawa Manito only had one catch on Thursday, but boy, was that catch a doozy.

Drift Football Men's Brady Elite Patriots White Fashion Jersey Tom 12 Manito hauled in a 21-yard touchdown with zero seconds remaining to help Chippewa Hills edge Newaygo 26-21 on the road.

Trailing 21-20 with roughly 20 seconds remaining, the Warriors marched 75 yards down the field in two plays to complete their game-winning drive.

“It was awesome,” head coach Larry Jose said. “Our kids never gave up hope.”

Koron Lowery had 10 carries for 39 yards and one touchdown and Trevor Swix had eight carries for 36 yards, while Ty Jose completed 10 of 21 passes for 245 yards and two touchdown passes and Dillon Sharp completed 6 of 10 passes for 63 yards and one touchdown pass.

Koronte Lowery had nine catches for 211 yards and two touchdowns and Mitchell Kuzma added two catches for 25 yards. On defense, Koronte Lowery and Michael Kowallic tallied six tackles each.

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The Warriors (1-1, 1-0) host Tri County next week Friday.

Drift Football Men's Brady Elite Patriots White Fashion Jersey Tom 12 “We’re just trying to improve game by game,” Jose said. We’re a young team that is making a lot of mistakes, but our kids have no quit in them. They never fold.”

Tri County 26, Big Rapids 21

HOWARD CITY — The Cardinals fell short of a comeback Thursday against the Vikings of Tri County.

The Cardinals were down 20-8 at halftime and outscored the Vikings 13-6 in the second half, but it wasn’t enough.

Quarterback Jayden Mason completed 11 of 20  passes for 197 yards and two touchdowns and carried the ball 10 times for 65 yards. Jace Gray had six catches for 78 yards and one touchdown and Dorian Martin had three catches for 35 yards and a score.

Elliott Blair and Adam Bollman had 10 tackles apiece to lead the Cardinals.

Big Rapids (1-1, 0-1) faces Fremont on Friday.

Marion 78, CCA 0

It was another tough night for the Cougars as they squared off against the defending conference champion Marion Eagles. The Eagles drove down the field on their opening drive and ended it with a trip into the end zone and never looked back. The Cougars look to rebound Friday against Michigan Lutheran starting at 7 p.m. at home.

Pine River 42, Hesperia 14

LEROY — Elijah Lewis ran for 163 yards and caught two passes for 63 yards to lead Pine River over Hesperia on Thursday in nonleague football action.

Lewis also had a 92-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. He had scoring runs of 13, 8, 7 and 30 yards and caught a 62-yard pass from Luke Hill for a touchdown.

Pine River (2-0) plays at Evart on Friday, Sept. 7.