TRAVERSE CITY — Despite a 34-27 setback to Allendale, Traverse City West appears poised to get into the playoffs with a 5-4 record.
Allendale 6-foot-5 defensive end Glenn Geurink batted down a fourth-down pass with 2:27 remaining to end West’s last chance Friday in the second game of a doubleheader at Thirlby Field.
Hudsonville’s 28-21 win over Holland West Ottawa could even give the Titans a No. 3 seed in their district, which could put them on the road against No. 2 Hudsonville instead of top-seeded Rockford.
Titans quarterback Jeff Turnquist threw for a career-high 310 yards in the loss, completing 24 of 44 passes with two touchdowns and two interceptions as West’s offense changed gears once Allendale sprinted out to a 21-0 first-lead.
The Titans had been making a living off passes to Geordon Carter and Zach McGuire the entire second half, until McGuire left the game with a left knee injury. He slipped on the turf while making a cut with 4:20 remaining. The pass was intercepted by Tanner Vugteveen and returned to the West 2-yard line to set up the game-winning score on a Trevor Bastien run with 4:16 to go.
Carter hauled in 10 passes for 114 yards and McGuire had eight receptions for 153 yards and a touchdown.
But with McGuire out, Allendale was able to double cover Carter. West still moved the ball — including three completions to Carter — to get to the Falcons’ 35 when Geurink’s swat of a pass headed Carter’s way over the middle all but sealed the game. After two first downs, Allendale was able to run the clock out.
West had tied the game 27-27 with 6:44 remaining on a 10-yard TD pass from Turnquist to Octavion Waugh to complete a drive that featured three completions to McGuire — all for first downs. The 10-play drive started on West’s 15 and would have begun from the six-inch line if not for an Allendale personal foul.
The Falcons (7-1) took their first second-half play to the house on a screen pass to Vugteveen for 70 yards to lead 27-13.
Two drives later, Grant Balino’s 10-yard sweep to the left made it 27-20 with 11:47 remaining.
Allendale didn’t waste any time at the game’s start, scoring on its second play as Haiden Majewski broke a 66-yard quarterback keeper for a score and a 7-0 lead 42 seconds into the game.
The Falcons struck again on their third possession, covering 93 yards in four plays, capped off by a 1-yard pass from Majewski to Nate Couterier with 1:32 left in the first quarter.
After a defensive stop gave Allendale a start at West’s 36, three plays later Majewski — who threw for 292 yards on 16 of 25 passing — found Bastien for a 31-yard screen down the right side to take a 21-0 lead as the Falcons’ hurry-up offense racked up 335 yards of total offense by halftime to West’s 175.
The Titans — who were 10 of 18 on third-down conversions — responded with its first scoring drive, going 65 yards in five plays, finished by a 38-yard pass from Turnquist to McGuire with 5:56 left in the opening half.
West added a 27-yard Zach Gloshen field goal with 1:21 left in the half after Calvin Bouttavong forced a fumble and Carter recovered to set the Titans up at the 45. The Titan defense forced a quick three-and-out and after a 55-yard punt return by McGuire and one completion to Carter, Gloshen booted a 28-yarder as time expired to make it 21-13 at halftime.
Allendale outgained West 477-426 for the game.
Caleb Breithaupt led the Titan defense with eight tackles, while Grant Ellison and Zac Schwert each had six.