The Vicksburg Bulldogs used four takeaways to earn a 21-12 homecoming win Friday over Paw Paw. The win pushes them to 5-1, one away from clinching a playoff spot for the fourth consecutive year. Meanwhile, Paw Paw falls to 3-3 and must run the table to snap their three-year postseason drought.
The scoreless first quarter lasted all of 20 minutes, with both teams punting twice and having a turnover on downs. Vicksburg’s lone giveaway came on a Nick Schley interception in the red zone at the start of the second quarter. The Bulldogs forced a quick punt, then capped off a 49-yard drive with a 10-yard Garrett Ketelaar touchdown run with 6:55 remaining.
On the following drive, Paw Paw quarterback Jimmy Wressel had a pass tipped at the line, intercepted by a diving Ryan Morgan. Two plays later, Ketelaar was in the end zone again, this time on a nine-yard run. Wressel was picked off again near midfield, this time by Adam Henderson. Two plays later, Caleb Welch rushed for a 53-yard score, giving Vicksburg all 21 of their points within a four minute stretch. The Bulldogs held Paw Paw to only two first downs for the entire half and carried a 21-0 advantage into the break.
Paw Paw started strong in the third, taking the opening drive 63 yards on six plays with a 29-yard rushing score from Schley. A missed extra-point, hurt by a high snap, kept them behind 21-6. Paw Paw forced a punt, but surrendered their third interception shortly thereafter to Austin Bresnahan. Both teams would trade punts into the midway point of the fourth quarter.
Paw Paw pushed from their own 19 to the Vicksburg 19 with about seven minutes remaining. Tyler Pursley rushed ahead and got to the two-yard line before fumbling the ball, recovered by Vicksburg’s Henderson in the end zone for a touchback.
Paw Paw got it back after forcing a punt with five minutes to go and put together a 12-play, 54-yard scoring drive. Wressel sealed it with a QB sneak touchdown with 1:42 remaining, but couldn’t get to the pylon on the two-point conversion rush, keeping the game at two-possessions and ultimately out of reach for Paw Paw.
Unofficially, Ketelaar was 10-20 passing for 82 yards, along with 47 rushing yards and two scores. Welch led Vicksburg with 80 rushing yards, followed by 67 from Henderson. For Paw Paw, Wressel was 5-16 for 32 passing yards. Three players topped 100 rushing yards, Pursley (114), David Marshall (107), and Schley (104).
Vicksburg can clinch a playoff berth with a win next week against South Haven (0-6). Paw Paw hosts Allegan (1-5) for week seven. Listen back to week six’s game below: