DeLaSalle rolls Detroit Lakes in the Minnesota football Class 4A quarterfinals
ST. CLOUD, Minn. - It's become an all-too-familiar home for heartache for the Detroit Lakes football team. The setting and the stage was the same place as the Lakers' three-point, four-overtime loss last season. It was Husky Stadium, it was St. C...
ST. CLOUD, Minn. - It's become an all-too-familiar home for heartache for the Detroit Lakes football team. The setting and the stage was the same place as the Lakers' three-point, four-overtime loss last season. It was Husky Stadium, it was St. Cloud State and it was the Minnesota Class 4A state quarterfinals.
And it was the same result Saturday, as Detroit Lakes fell to DeLaSalle 42-7.
"It had nothing to do with the field tonight," Detroit Lakes coach Flint Motschenbacher said. "It had everything to do with DeLaSalle."
Saturday's game was over a lot sooner than the four-overtime loss to Princeton a year ago, but there's no such thing as a good loss come playoff time, seen in the tears in the eyes of Detroit Lakes players. Whether it was by three points or 35 meant nothing to the Lakers. All it meant was in back-to-back seasons the Lakers came one win short of playing in the Metrodome.
"We got off to a good start, but we got a couple penalties there that could have made it a 14-0 game," Motschenbacher said. "Instead, we gave up the momentum and, once they grabbed the momentum, it got away from us."
More specifically, DeLaSalle (10-1) running back Chris Williams got away from everyone. The senior finished with 271 yards and six touchdowns on 35 carries. There was no snow nor was their rain Saturday in St. Cloud, but the weather pushed Williams to get to the Metrodome.
"Finally, we get to play inside. I'm tired of the cold," Williams said. "I couldn't do it without my (offensive) line. They opened the holes and I just hit them. They deserve all the credit. We were prepared for this."
On the opening drive of the game DeLaSalle tried a fake punt on fourth down. Detroit Lakes stuffed it, got the ball on their own 49-yard line and two running plays from quarterback Michael Herzog later the Lakers were up 7-0. They would never score again, as DeLaSalle would score 42 unanswered points, all on the ground from Williams.
Isaac Hodge intercepted a Herzog pass at the Detroit Lakes' 41-yard line and took it back to the 19 midway through the first. Five plays later, Williams ran it in for a 3-yard touchdown. The extra point was missed, so the Lakers held a 7-6 lead. Midway through the second, the Islanders went 70 yards on five plays, three of which were Williams' runs for 50 yards, including the 11-yard touchdown run to cap it off. After a Lakers punt, the Islanders came back with a 54-yard drive on seven plays, capping the drive with an 8-yard touchdown for Williams and taking a 20-7 lead into halftime.
The second half was a different half, but the same nightmare for Detroit Lakes (9-2). It took DeLaSalle three running plays from Williams to go 59 yards on their opening drive to make it 27-7. Herzog's second interception proved to shut the door. Cornell King took the interception from midfield to the Lakers' 6-yard line and Williams ran it in on the next play to make it 33-7 midway through the third.
"They are a very good football team and they were the better team," Motschenbacher said. "This group of seniors has done a great job. They were 19-3 and they set the tone for how you have to work. We're proud of this group. Came up short twice to get to the Metrodome, but it doesn't really work out all the time."
D 6 14 14 8-42
DL 7 0 0 0-7
DL-Herzog 12 run (Payne kick)
D-Williams 3 run (kick missed)
D-Williams 11 run (Ajaluwa kick)
D-Williams 8 run (Ajaluwa kick)
D-Williams 15 run (Ajaluwa kick)
D-Williams 6 run (Ajaluwa kick)
D-Williams 6 run (King pass from Hart)
RUSHING: DL, Herzog 26-125, Nosal 8-13, Champa 1-4, Paskey 1-0, Jackson 2-9, C. Hedstrom 2-5. D, Williams 35-271, Ajaluwa 1-0, Hart 9-10, Freeman 1-6, King 1-15, Cuff 1-3, Moore 1-0, Weber 2-3.
PASSING: DL, Herzog 6-20-3 44 yards. D, Hart 1-8-1 33 yards.
RECEIVING: DL, Cihak 1-1, Paskey 2-21, Nosal 2-13, Hedstrom 1-9.
Readers can reach Forum reporter
Chris Murphy at (701) 241-5548