Reed City whip Clare for district title

Phillip Price-Jones fights for yardage.
Phillip Price-Jones fights for yardage.

REED CITY — It will be Reed City vs. Saginaw Swan Valley II.

The long awaited rematch has been set with Reed City and Swan Valley both securing district title wins on Friday to advance to 11-0 and set up their battle next weekend at Saginaw.

The Coyotes defeated Clare (9-1) 38-7 to earn their third straight district title while Swan Valley eliminated Freeland 55-10 on Friday in the district finals.

Swan Valley has been ranked No. 1 in Division 5 and Reed City No. 3.

Last season, Swan Valley beat Reed City 29-14 in the semifinals and lost to Grand Rapids West Catholic in the state title game.

“That was a bittersweet loss in the semis last year,” Reed City coach Monty Price said. “We didn’t play up to our potential we thought we could play at. I know a lot of our kids and our coaches have had that team on our radar. We knew we’d probably have a chance to run up against them again. “Obviously they’re a tremendous program and are having a great year. We have a lot of respect for them. We’re excited to see where we’re with that matchup. We’ll travel to Swan Valley and see where we’re at.”

The Coyotes, with all five touchdowns from Phillip Jones-Price, fired out to a 38-0 halftime lead over Clare and most of the second half was played under the running clock. Brenden Sersaw intercepted a Jackson Price pass in the end zone to stop an early Reed City drive.

But the Coyotes were unstoppable the rest of the way.

Jones-Price had scoring runs of 53 and 81 in the first quarter with Connor Agan and Ryan Hansen running for the extra points for a 16-0 lead. In the second quarter, Jones had touchdown runs of 5, 23 and 16 yards. Price and Brandon Major had two-point conversion runs in the second.

Sersaw had a 40-yard touchdown run late in the game for Clare.

“You take the win,” Price said. “I thought our kids played a tremendous first half. I thought we came out a little flat in the second half but the running clock had us in the position to do that. It was a great team win.”

Reed City rushed for 424 yards. Jones-Price had 17 carries for 235 yards. Price had 53 yards and Wirgau 36.

Price passed for 64 yards. Clare had 166 total yards with most of those late in the game.

Mason Bush had five tackles and Anthony Pelton four.

Both Swan Valley and Reed City were grouped in the same regional this year. Swan Valley has the higher computer points’ ranking, and gets to host. Next week’s winner will play in the state semifinal on Nov. 17.

The game at Swan Valley 1 p.m. on Saturday.

“We’re definitely excited to play Swan Valley,” Jackson Price said. “I can’t wait to play them again and get revenge on them.”

In last week’s predistrict games, Reed City beat Benzie Central 48-0 and Clare topped Manistee 42-28. Reed City beat Clare 34-7 in last season’s district title game.

“We knew it’d be tough with Clare. They’re very good, even with one of their best players out unfortunately,” Jackson Price said. “We stayed focused, did our jobs and came out of here with a win.”