Lowell football hangs tough with Dux
by Justin Scott
A challenging non-conference schedule continued for the Lowell Red Arrows varsity football team as Zeeland West came into town last Friday. The Dux brought in their powerful Wing-T offense and an unbeaten record on the season. They have become a well-known area power over the last decade amassing a 137-32 record since their first season in 2005. For comparison, Lowell is 137-36 in that same span.
Zeeland West started the game strong going up 16-0. The Red Arrow defense held Zeeland West off for much of the game, but lengthy run plays would help the Dux out of several lengthy third-down situations.
The Red Arrow offense responded after going down. Lowell dug into their bag of tricks with Cade Solomonson taking a hand-off, then throwing a 34-yard pass to Sam Lixie. LHS scored moments later as Andy Anschutz ran the ball for 21 yards around the left side diving over the pylon to get the Arrows on the board. Anschutz also had 71 receiving yards on the day for the Lowell offense.
Late in the second quarter, Anschutz struck again with a big play returning a kickoff down to the 42-yard line. Brett Spanbauer would score on a quarterback keeper to finish off the scoring drive. It was 24-12 in favor of the Dux entering halftime. Two-point conversions played a significant part in the game as Zeeland West made all three of theirs in the first half and Lowell failed to convert theirs. While the Dux had three touchdowns to Lowell’s two, the two-point conversion swing made it a two-score game.
The Dux and Red Arrows would continue to trade scores in the third quarter. Zeeland West scored first, then Nate Clark would be on the receiving end of Spanbauer midway through the third quarter. Lowell closed the Zeeland West gap to 32-19. The gap would again be extended to 40-19 in the fourth quarter, but the Red Arrows battled to the end. An 87-yard touchdown run by Doak Dean brought the team within two scores with under 2:00 to play. Lowell fell 40-26.
There were plenty of positives to take from the performance for LHS which included 12 first downs and 317 yards of offense. Lowell was able to keep it close with one of the top teams in West Michigan. Lowell’s only loss on the season prior to last week was to Rockford, also a very strong team. Spanbauer had a productive day leading a balanced offense which included being 11 of 14 passing. Justin Wade also made both of his extra point attempts.
Things get a little easier for the Red Arrows in the coming weeks. They travel to Forest Hills Northern this Friday, Sept. 27 and host Grand Rapids Ottawa Hills on October 4. Both FHN and Ottawa Hills sit at 1-3 on the season.