DETROIT (WOOD) — Brady Drogosh was too much for Forest Hills Central’s defense to overcome.
The Warren Da La Salle quarterback racked up 401 total yards as the Rangers’ bid for their first state title ended with a disappointing 52-13 loss in Friday’s Division 2 state final at Ford Field.
It was the first defeat of the season for Forest Hills Central (13-1), which was making its first trip to a state final since 1994.
“We got outplayed in all facets of the game and that’s a really good team,” the Rangers’ coach Tim Rogers said. “We looked long and hard to find weaknesses on De La Salle’s team and we could not find them on film. We found that out today.
“They’re well coached and they are deep. There are not many weaknesses as far as their players.”
Defense was the catalyst in the Rangers’ deepest postseason run in nearly 30 years but the play of Drogosh, coupled with an early deficit, was a combination that spelled disaster.
Drogosh, a Cincinnati commit, completed 21 of 23 for 249 yards and also ran for 152 yards on 15 carries. He combined for five touchdowns.
“I coached the defense and we just couldn’t slow down the quarterback,” Rogers said. “Why he’s not being recruited by Alabama, I don’t know. He’s a darn good quarterback. He can make all the throws and he runs really well. He’s an excellent football player.”
De La Salle’s 38 first-half points were the most given up by the Rangers in an entire game this season. No opponent had scored more than 21 points all season.
De La Salle stormed out to an early 21-0 lead in the first quarter and led 35-0 midway through the second quarter.
“This moment is a big deal for all of us and I don’t think we came out starstuck, I just think they are a good football team and had a good plan and got after us early,” Rogers said. “That’s a tough team to try and trade punches with because they are explosive all over the field.”
Drogosh ran for a pair of scores and tossed two more en route to a commanding 38-13 advantage at the half.
De La Salle piled up 336 yards of total offense in the first half.
Trailing 35-0, FHC showed late life in the final 3 minutes of the half. Quarterback Justin Osterhouse threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to Roman Brummel to get the Rangers on the board. A minute later, after a De La Salle fumble, FHC added another touchdown. Osterhouse found Ty Hudkins on a 25-yard pass play to make it 35-13.
“While we were still quite a few points behind, we did get a little momentum going into the half,” Rogers said. “We thought we made some adjustments that would slow them down a little bit, but they made some adjustments, too.
“That’s a really good football team and I would love to see them play whoever wins Division 1 because they’re awfully tough.”
In the third quarter, the Pilots (13-1) extended their lead with a pair of touchdown runs from Drogosh and Rhett Roeser.
The Rangers had only 151 yards of total offense and were 1-of-10 on third down.