By Shae Brophy
In a game that made very little difference in the final standings, the Hawks traveled to Ohio on Saturday, July 30, to close out their regular season with a matchup against the Lima Warriors. With a berth in the playoffs already clinched, and a Battle Creek Coyotes victory on Saturday, the Hawks were already locked in as the five seed in the Big 8 division.
The Hawks battled in Lima, but ultimately came up on the short end of a 53-32 final score. Wide receiver Monta Swanigan led the way offensively for West Michigan, finishing with yet another three-touchdown game. One of Swanigan’s touchdowns came in the first quarter when he struck from 65 yards to give the Hawks their first points of the game. Running back Eric Woodfork also found the end zone in the first half for the Hawks, scoring on a three-yard run.
The Hawks trailed by a 28-16 margin at halftime, but were never able to get back into the game. Swanigan’s two second-half touchdowns kept the score respectable, but West Michigan would not see the lead again on the evening.
“This was a very tough game opponent in the Lima Warriors, and they played their hearts out,” said head coach David Lange. “We made some good plays, and had chances to make more plays, but in the end we were not able to make the big plays we needed to get back in the game.”
Despite the loss, the Hawks will make their first playoff appearance in franchise history. As the fifth seed in the Big Eight division, the Hawks will travel to Battle Creek for a rematch with the Coyotes. Battle Creek won the first contest earlier this season by a score of 30-20. The game will played on August 13.