Detroit Catholic Central Defeats Brother Rice in 73rd Boys Bowl Game

Even though the annual Boys Bowl game has been around for 73 years, it was the first time both Dan Anderson and his junior quarterback Marco Genrich got to experience it in new ways.

Anderson has been around the Detroit Catholic Central program for 18 years, and has gotten to experience the game as a coordinator. But on Sunday, he was the head coach in this game for the first time.

For him it was both humbling, and exciting as the Shamrocks came from behind to beat Birmingham Brother Rice 27-23 giving Catholic Central its third straight Boys Bowl win.

“It was very exciting. I don’t know if anything is going on right now, but it means the world to me. It really does. Boys Bowl from and outsider’s perspective, and learning what it’s all about for 18 years, you have an appreciation for this game and what it means,” he said as he jokingly checked for a pulse.

“The games are always a great battle. I’m just so proud of these boys with how they kept fighting through out the whole game.”

In typical CC vs Rice fashion, the game went down to the wire late in the fourth quarter. Rice junior quarterback Mariano Valenti hit Colin Gardner for a 90-yard pass before getting injured and leaving the game with six minutes to play.

The Rice drive stalled, and senior Christian Hajjar hit a 24-yard field goal for Rice’s first lead of the day, 23-21.

Even though Genrich is a first year starter, he was put in this situation earlier this year, but came up short throwing an interception against Toledo Whitmer late in the game.

“I didn’t want to experience that feeling again. I was ready to make plays and make sure I could get a game winning drive instead of it ending with the ball in their hands,” he said.

The 5-foot-11 signal caller stood tall with his back to the CC end zone after Brother Rice failed to move the ball from the 50 yard line. One the first play of the drive, Genrich rolled out to his right and found junior Parker Bohland down the sideline for a 53-yard gain.

Then after a few carries by Genrich moving the ball to the 12 yard line, he struck for his second touchdown pass of the day.

“We wanted to fake a run, so we did a wham pass,” he said. “Every probably thought we were going to run it. The linebackers and safeties bit on it, and I found Mike (Harding) in the back of the end zone.”

That play-action pass gave the Shamrocks (3-2) a 27-23 lead with 42 seconds left in the fourth quarter. An interception on the ensuing drive Ryan Birney sealed the win.

“Marco is a young guy who barely had a chance to play last year. He’s still getting his feet wet. With the schedule we have, and that we play, you have to grow up fast. Marco has the right demeanor, he doesn’t let things bother him too much, and he just keeps going,” Anderson said of his signal caller.

“He’s been working so hard to get better, and it showed today.”

Also leading the Shamrock offense was senior running back Cam Ryan who opened the game up with a 36-yard touchdown run, and a 3-yard touchdown on his way to 115 yards on 19 carries.

Brother rice (2-3) was led by Valenti who used his feet and his arm to move the Warrior offense all day. He threw two touchdown passes before getting injured, and even ran one in for a 17-yard score that cut into CC’s lead 21-20 with 9:18 left in the third quarter.

“I really like what I’ve seen from him. He moves the offense well, and is getting a better feel for the game in his second year,” Michigan quarterback and former Brother Rice quarterback Alex Malzone said.

“As an Alumn, I know our offense is in good hands with him under center.”