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De La Salle scores 35 straight in Prep Bowl 35-14 win over Catholic Central
DETROIT - Passing the ball is not typically a part of Warren De La Salle's offense. They like to pound it on the ground with the run game. The Pilots took to the air in a 35-14 win over Detroit Catholic Central for the program's third ever Prep Bowl title.
Senior quarterback Luke Pfromm passed for 331 yards and four touchdowns in the win. Three of his touchdowns went for over 50 yards, which is unusual for a DLS offense.
"We thought the elements were pretty good," DLS head coach Mike Giannone. "Playing indoors (Ford Field), we didn't have to fight the wind. We were pretty fortunate. We have some pretty good receivers, we got a little bit of time, and Luke can throw it."
CC scored on its first possession of the game, marching the length of the field to score on a short touchdown run by Marco Genrich. Then the Pilot offense took off. Pfromm rolled out and connected with Evan Vaillancourt on a 16-yard touchdown pass to tie the game.
In the second quarter, he found Jacob Badalamenti streaking up the sideline for a 57-yard touchdown pass to put the Pilots up 14-7 with 10:36 to go in the half. In the third, up 21-7 on CC, the DLS connection between Pfromm and Badalamenti was successful again, this time from 56 yards out to make the score 28-7. And for good measure, Pfromm hit Josh DeBerry on a short screen pass, who did the rest, scoring from 73 yards out to seal the win in the fourth.
"Luke was awesome," Giannone said. "He made some plays. We don't usually draw them up like that. The throws he made to Jake (Badalamenti) and DeBerry were spot-on. You gotta have some vision to stay in there and make those throws. He's a tough kid. He's a big kid, too."
The two big plays that broke the game open were Badalamenti's two touchdown passes. On both of them he ran by two CC defenders to catch two accurate balls thrown by Pfromm. Those two big plays by him seemed to take the air out of CC, who had no one to match his speed on the perimeter.
"He's a gamer," Ginanonne said of Badalamenti. "He's one of our best wide receivers, and his speed can cause problems for opponents. It caused some problems tonight."
Next up for DLS are the Division Two state playoffs, where they will be one of the top teams competing. They play stout defense, and of course can run the ball. But now that they've shown they can pass the ball as well with that 6-6 quarterback and speedsters on the outside, they'll be a dangerous out these next five weeks.
"It's part of our game that we haven't shown a lot of," Gianonne said. "I think the time the playoffs come, you have to have all the dimensions so that you can compete with some of the really good teams like Catholic Central."