Reed City slips by Manistee, moves to 6-0

REED CITY — It was an non-league win for the Reed City Coyotes. But in many ways, it was one of the most important victories of the season for the Coyotes.

Friday’s 8-0 win over Manistee came in the Coyotes’ only non-league game of the regular season. But it kept Reed City perfect at 6-0. The Coyotes will play at Chippewa Hills Friday in Central State Activities Association action.

On Reed City’s third possession of the game, the Coyotes took the ball at the Manistee 39 and put together an eight-play drive. It ended on Trent Sims’ 3-yard run for a touchdown. Garrett Benson ran in for the two points.

“I thought our team played very good team defense and executed our game plan, almost flawlessly,” said Reed City coach Monty Price. “Offensively, we shut them out.”

It was cold and windy and that most likely played a contributing factor in the game, Price indicated.

Sims had 52 yards on 19 carries. Benson had 54 yards on 16 attempts.

Nate Kailing led the rushing attack for Reed City with 69 yards on 19 carries.

“It was definitely cold,” said Kailing. “I felt I was moving a little slower that I normally do. Everything felt a little slower because of the weather. There were turnovers on both side. It’s things you have to deal with. There’s nothing you can do about the weather. You have to be tough. But it was definitely cold.”

“Manistee’s a good team,” Reed City quarterback Mike Barton said. “Their defense was pretty good. It was mostly a defensive game.”

The Reed City defense came through with the shutout after allowing 30 points the previous week in a win at Central Montcalm.

“With this win, we’re definitely going to the playoffs,” said Kailing noting that the automatic number teams need to automatically go to the playoffs. “It was a huge boost for playoff points. One of our season goals was to go undefeated. Without a win over Manistee, we couldn’t have done that.”

“We were excited,” Barton said. “It was a big win. It was a confidence builder.”

Against Chip Hills, “our defense seems to be clicking on all cylinders. Our key is for the offense to have a good week of practice. I think our defense will be real good,” Kailing said.

Chippewa Hills has a good program,” Barton said. “We have to be focused and ready to play.”

Price said he’s expecting from Chippewa Hills “one heckuva game. They always play us very tough. We’ve struggle against them. It’s going to be a big challenge for us.”

The Coyotes were 6-3 last season after nine games and qualified for the playoffs, losing to Menominee in the first round of the playoffs. A few more wins for Reed City could help the Coyotes get enough points to host some playoff games.