The DeSales High School football team won its fourth CCL-Silver Division championship in five seasons and snapped a two-game losing streak against Watterson by winning the annual matchup between the programs 25-14 on Friday, Oct. 14, on its home field.
Senior running back Warren Ball scored a pair of first-half touchdowns and finished with 195 yards and the two scores on 44 carries as the Stallions improved to 4-3 overall.
While DeSales finished 2-0 in the league, Watterson fell to 3-5 overall and 0-1 in the CCL-Silver.
“We really played some smash-mouth football and the offensive line did a tremendous job tonight,” Ball said.
Auston Garrett returned the opening kickoff 62 yards to the Watterson 36 to set up the Stallions’ first score, a 24-yard field goal by Anthony Ciammaichella with 4 minutes, 50 seconds left in the opening quarter.
DeSales drove 69 yards on nine plays on its next drive as Ball ran in from 8 yards to make it 10-0.
Ball added a 6-yard scoring run with 5:28 to go before halftime to give the Stallions a 17-0 lead. That was set up when DeSales quarterback Alex Perrine hit J.T. Blubaugh for an 18-yard reception to move his team to the Watterson 18. The Eagles also were called for a roughing-the-passer penalty on the play to give the Stallions the ball at the 9.
Watterson cut it to 17-7 with 10:09 to go in the third quarter when quarterback Austin Greene hit Jack Gammon for a 28-yard touchdown. A 24-yard run by Isaiah Murray earlier in the drive set up the score.
The Stallions got a 63-yard interception return by Jalen Noble late in the third period that they turned into a 28-yard field goal by Ciammaichella for a 20-7 lead.
Watterson closed to within 20-14 when Austin Greene ran for 66 yards on a quarterback keeper with 8:52 remaining.
DeSales held off the rally, however, as Ja’Mezz McKinney tackled Greene in the end zone for a safety with 3:07 to go and Ciammaichella added a 30-yard field goal with 1:30 left.
“Obviously we knew that they were going to go to (Ball) a lot,” Watterson coach Dan Bjelac said. “We had first-and-15 a few times and made some errors against a good team.”
WATTERSON 0 0 7 7 -- 14
DeSALES 3 14 3 5 -- 25
D--Ciammaichella 24 FG
D--Ball 8 run (Ciammaichella kick)
D--Ball 6 run (Ciammaichella kick)
W--Gammon 28 pass from Greene (Clegg kick)
D--Ciammaichella 27 FG
W--Greene 66 run (Clegg kick)
D--Safety, quarterback tackled in end zone
D--Ciammaichella 30 FG