By Ben Murphy
Photo by Kim Langlois
A 17 yard field goal by Freeland’s Alex Green proved to be the difference Friday night, giving the visiting Falcons a narrow 10-7 win over Clare in both team’s football opener.
After a scoreless first quarter, Green booted in the game’s first score from 17 yards out with 2:39 to play in the half.
The teams failed to score once again in the third quarter, though a fourth quarter touchdown run by Shane Flattery from four yards out and extra point by Green gave the Falcons a 10-0 lead with 7:43 to play.
The Pioneers dented the scoreboard with 4:21 to play when Colton Punches caught an eight yard pass from Zach Tyler and added a Hunter Ruby extra point to make it 10-7.
The Clare defense forced a three-and-out on Freeland’s next possession, and drove deep into Freeland territory late in the game before missing a short field goal with 17 seconds left.
Tyler was seven-of-13 passing for 108 yards and one touchdown, and also ran for 79 yards on the ground.
Jordan Gross had 64 yards on 16 carries, James Simon had 19 yards on five carries, Brock Swan made two catches for 41 yards and Punches had two grabs for 20 yards and one touchdown.
Mich Greenacre led the defense with 18 tackles, Spencer Harrell had 13 tackles and one interception, Lee Cole had 10, Joe McGuire and Gross both had nine, with Logan Emery and Patrick Hughes bot had seven.
Clare (0-1) plays at Beal City (1-0) today.