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Ready for some football?

Ready for some football?

By Judy Reed

You don’t have to wait until fall to experience football in Cedar Springs. As a matter of fact, The West Michigan Force, a semi pro team that now calls Skinner Field at Morley Park its home field, had its home opener last Friday night against the Detroit Ravens.

The team gave out free t-shirts to all Cedar Springs residents, and all Cedar Springs students, faculty, and staff got in free with an ID (as they will at each home game).

The game was a match-up between the top two teams in the Western Conference, and ended with the Ravens on top, 14-6.

The Ravens scored on an interception returned for a touchdown of around 25 yards by safety Ed Gill just before half, and the second score came in the 4th quarter on a 35-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Mike Akarwi to wide-receiver Brandon Johnson.

The Force finally scored in the fourth quarter on a perfectly thrown fade route to wide-receiver Tyler Bustraan from quarterback Ryan Bowling for a 26-yard touchdown. They missed the extra point.

Defensive end Patrick McCullough, from Grandville, had eight tackles and two sacks, and was named both player of the week, and the GRTV game MVP.

Next week the Force will be on the road playing the Flint Rampage, and will be back in Cedar Springs on June 26 to take on the Motor City Soldiers.

The team plans to continue to give away more freebies to residents at each game, and will show their support for the community in other ways as well: a portion of the gate revenue will be put aside to create two scholarships for juniors that participate in the band; all concession revenues will go the C.S. Band Boosters; and a football camp will be held at no charge for all Cedar Springs youth football players

The West Michigan Force was founded in 2006, and has beaten some of the biggest names in semipro football. They were Northern Division Champions in the Western Football Conference in both 2008 and 2009, and the team has an overall record of 40-12.

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