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Lumen Christi Catholic High School quarterback Joe Lathers makes a cut during a run earlier in the 2022 season.  Photo by Jeff Steers, JTV Sports.

Friday Football Feature  – A kickoff for your weekend high school football 

By Jeff Steers
JTV Sports

(November 18, 2022 10:58 AM) Walking off the field after its third consecutive loss to begin the 2022 football season, Lumen Christi Catholic High School athlete Joe Lathers had a positive thought running through his head.

He knew the Titans were going to be okay.

After a players meeting, the Titans took an 11-3 mentality into each of its next nine games.

Lumen Christi is two wins away from its top goal of winning another state football title and finishing the season with 11 consecutive wins after such a slow start.

“I just knew we were going to be okay,” Lathers said. “Right after watching the Hastings film, we talked about what we needed to do as players to get better.

“At that point we all took an 11-3 mentality.”

Lathers takes that mentality to the field on nearly every play. The senior is the quarterback on offense and a linebacker on defense. 

He has more than 1,500 yards of offense and 22 touchdowns for the Titans this season. Lathers has rushed for 844 yards and passed for another 678 yards in his first full season as quarterback.

“Last year I broke my hand midway through the season so I stuck to playing defense,” Lathers said. “Offensive coordinator Sean Brogan did a great job working with us all spring and summer.”

The Titans have averaged nearly 35 points per game in winning its last nine games heading into the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 7 state semifinal on Saturday against Napoleon.

The Titans’ defense has been just as good, allowing just over seven points per game during that stretch. Lathers has 62 tackles on the season – the sixth best on the Titans’ squad. 

“As linebackers we have to come downhill and stop opponent’s running games,” Lathers said. “It was tough to play on both sides of the football at the beginning of the season.”

Lumen Christi is in its sixth semifinal game in seven years with another opportunity to advance to Ford Field for the MHSAA finals. Lathers was a freshman the last time Lumen Christi went to the finals.

“I was just a freshman, so I was just watching the seniors play,” Lathers said. “I learned that you have to experience a great week of practice (before the finals).

“One mistake can ruin the chance to win a state championship so you have to take advantage of every opportunity.”

Lathers would like to play college football next year but does not have any offers yet.

“I have been concentrating on the season,” Lathers said. “If you play in the state championship game, offers will come.”

He plans to study sports or construction management in college and has a 3.0 grade point average at LCCHS.

“Lumen Christi challenges you to be the best person you can be,” Lathers said. “They expect you to do your best in everything … whether its sports, academics, or other extracurricular activities.

“I like that.”

MHSAA State Division 7 Football Semifinal

Saturday, Nov. 19

At Chelsea High School

Napoleon vs. Lumen Christi 1 p.m. 

The winner advances to the MHSAA state football final at Ford Field on Saturday, Nov. 26, at 10 a.m. 

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