September 5, 2009

Latorre Throws Late TD Pass to Lift Huskies Past Cal

Box Score

CALFORNIA,PA- Quarterback Dan Latorre (Elysburg/Southern Columbia) hit Cory Stiger (Williamsport/Loyalsock Twp) with a four-yard touchdown pass with 22 seconds left to play to lift the sixth-ranked Bloomsburg University Huskies over 17th-ranked California (PA), 17-10, on Saturday night.

After Cal (0-2) had tied the game at 10-10 on an 18-yard scoring pass from Josh Portis to AJ Jackson with a minute to play, the Huskies (2-0) started their game winning drive on their own 39-yard line. After Latorre's first pass fell incomplete, he scrambled for 10 yards out to the Huskies 49-yard line. Following a timeout with 36 seconds to play, the senior quarterback hit a wide-open Chris Tressler (Lewistown/Lewistown) with a 47-yard bomb to the Vulcans four-yard line. On the next play, Latorre hit Stiger with a touchdown pass, Stiger's first career scoring catch, to put Bloomsburg in front 17-10 with 22 seconds to play.

Cal, though, wasn't done. Portis completed passes of 21 and 14 yards on consecutive plays putting the ball at the Bloomsburg 36-yard line with six seconds to play. After an incomplete pass left just one second to play, Portis' last pass was knocked down by the Huskies Mike Varanavage (Philadelphia/Archbishop Ryan) preserving the Bloomsburg win.

The game was a back and forth struggle between the defenses with the only scoring threw the first three quarters being a field goal from Jon Koenig (Pine Grove/Pine Grove) from 42-yards out which tied his career long with 12:47 to play in the second period. In the third period, Cal's Kevin Hagerman connected from 30-yards out tying the score at 3-3 heading to the fourth period.

Bloomsburg went in front 10-3 on a special teams play. A long punt from Bloomsburg was muffed by Cal's Mike Brown and recovered in the end zone by Bloomsburg's Branden Wright (Danville/Danville) with 4:29 to play setting up the wild finish.

Latorre finished 12-22 for 166 yards and one score, while Ben Weaber (Lebanon/Cedar Crest) caught five passes for 37 yards to lead the receivers. Varanavage finished with 10 tackles and the one key pass break-up, while Anthony Smith (Pottstown/Pottstown) added eight tackles.

Bloomsburg, winners of nine straight road games dating back to 2007, will take to the road once again next week traveling to Mercyhurst for a 1 p.m. kickoff.