Cardinals roll past Coyotes 8-0

Big Rapids’ Ryan Cosper takes the ball down the field while Reed City’s Dylan Foster pursues the play. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

REED CITY — Mason Gifford tied the career scoring record for Big Rapids’ boys soccer program, and his Cardinals blanked Reed City 8-0 in Wednesday’s Central State Activities Association win over the Coyotes.

Big Rapids ended the game at 33:01 when Lance Strpko fired in a 20-yard shot for the eighth goal.

The visitors had scored the first three goals the first 15 minutes, starting with Connor McAdams’ goal, assisted by James Hundersmarck. Moments later, Gifford notched his career goal No. 67 to tie the school record, assisted by Strpko.

“He’s looking for another one,” Big Rapids coach Justin Fox smiled. “He’s hungry.”

Hundersmarck added the third goal on a penalty kick.

The game stayed quiet until the 28-minute and 29:18 marks of the half when Owen Seay scored two goals.

“We were playing well with the ball,” Seay said.

Oliver Hazewinkel put in the sixth goal, for a 6-0 halftime lead.

Eric Cohen scored the sixth goal early in the second half before Strpko ended it for the eight-goal lead.

Jackson Lung started as goalkeeper and Connor Kinnally also saw action.

Big Rapids is 9-6.

“I thought we started off well,” Fox said. “We had a couple goals early and that always helps. I wanted to make sure we started strong as we did against Grant and do the same against Reed City. It’s always a rivalry game. Reed City was coming off a pretty good effort against Lakeview.”

Reed City is 2-10 overall and 0-8 in the conference.

The Cardinals mercied Reed City in Big Rapids earlier this season.

“We’ve got three games this week and came off a pretty good one earlier this week,” Reed City coach Doug Emington said. “We’re still sorting things out.”

Reed City lost 4-2 to Lakeview.

The Coyotes have been enjoying the presence of Seth Phelps whose future was questionable a few weeks ago because of an ailing knee. But he’s been cleared medically to play.

“It’s great to have him,” Emington said. “He does a lot of things for us that we really need. We’re pleased to have him.”

“I’m probably right now hitting 80 to 85 percent,” Phelps said

Reed City plays at Shelby on Thursday.

Big Rapids is home against Lakeview on Monday.

“They beat us at their place (3-2),” Fox said.


Posted by John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at

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