Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo

Uncorks Powerful Deceptive Offense in Second Half to Beat Orange and Black 13 – 0

Fighting with blood in their eyes, the orange and black of Washington high school made a gallant but vain attempt to show the Massillon public Saturday afternoon it could beat Alliance and went down to a 13 to 0 defeat in the second half of the game under a powerful and deceptive Alliance offense.

The team fought as it never fought before this season, and might have accomplished its purpose had not injures wrecked the backbone of the squad at crucial moments when it was apparent that the team was marching to victory. Had not Laughlin been injured in the first quarter when the local team lost the ball on downs on the Alliance 12-yard line, the game might have had a different ending.

Although “Whitey” continued in the game, the injury sapped his strength and his knee gave way when he failed by a yard to make a first down on Alliance’s 12-yard line. On the visitor’s return punt, “Whitey’s” knee again gave way and he had to be taken from the game. With Laughlin out of the game, the local team had little to show in an offensive way. Injuries also wrecked the line in the last two periods of play which helped the visitors no little in pushing across their two touchdowns.

The fighting spirit of the team Saturday won favor with the fans even though the youthful Tigers were defeated. The players were out to vindicate themselves after an idle week of practice and three weeks of steady criticism. They had signed a statement three days before to stand by their coach and their only end Saturday was to go in and fight for him, something they failed to at any other time this year. The boos and hisses which accompanied misplays on other days were not heard Saturday. Words of encouragement took their place for those in the stands could see that the team was not laying down but was making every effort to win and that is what the citizens of Massillon have been clamoring for since the second game of the year – a fighting team.

Yes, it was evident to all that the players were using the best of their football knowledge Saturday, but that was not of a high caliber. Their attack was not deceptive and the team itself was in poor condition, as the number of injuries plainly show. A week’s idleness may have been partly responsible for the battered condition of the Massillon squad and again may have had nothing to do with it. Nevertheless it looked pitiful to see five players on the bench from injuries. Captain Laughlin was taken to the city hospital where his injured hip was treated Saturday night. However, he was removed from the institution later in the evening and was able to get about Sunday.

In tackling Alliance Saturday, the youthful Tigers bumped into the strongest opposition of the year. The eastern county gridders are large and rangy, have a very deceptive attack, are hard as nails, and team nicely together. When Coach Wilcoxen ordered his men out to practice at the start of the season, he found he had but two lettermen in the pack and that nine vacancies had to be filled. This he completed in short order and the team opened the season by playing two tie games with Akron Central and Warren. At this time in the year, however, the green players have become seasoned veterans and from all indications the team as yet does not realize its strength, it may wind up the season without a defeat. At least it has that possibility before it.

The victory Alliance registered over Washington high Saturday was the first since 1921 when a badly battered wrecked Washington high team was given a trouncing on Mt. Union field.

Alliance made but one substitution during the entire game and with one or two exceptions the team appeared in as good a shape at the end of the 48 minutes of playing as at the start of the battle.

The local team had but one good scoring opportunity and that was in the first period. Alliance started off with a rush and worked the pigskin to the Massillon 21-yard line where an incomplete pass on the fourth down gave the locals the ball. Then the best offensive punch of the day was shown by the youthful Tigers. On a series of line plays and end runs, the team carried the ball to the Alliance 19-yard line, where a group of visiting players bent Laughlin into the shape of a crooked banana and “Whitey” slumped on the ground with a painful injury to his right knee. The spirit of the Massillon captain, however, kept him in the game and when he should have been carrying the ball, were it not for the injury, he was content with forming interference for Grant and Briggs. On the fourth down, however he was given the pigskin with four yards to go for a first down. He made three of the yards and would have made the required distance had not his knee buckled throwing him a yard short of a first down and a possible touchdown. It was the only real scoring opportunity for the orange and black and the youthful gridders appeared disheartened as their captain was taken from the field on the next play with his leg again injured. Injuries to players who make up the backbone strength of the team kept the playing eleven continually weakened and a little less confident than it otherwise would have been. Dommer, Potts and Straughn were all forced from the contest, which made it necessary for Coach Atkinson to shift tackles to ends and a guard to center in an effort to strengthen his line where most necessary.

Although this is not meant to detract from the fine showing of the visitors, Alliance’s two touchdowns were scored under such conditions.

The red and white scored its first touchdown near the middle of the third period. Taking the ball on their own 40-yard line, the visitors used a deceptive open formation that carried the ball to the Massillon 34-yard line. Here a sneak play was worked successfully with the ball snapped back when the backfield appeared in an argument and Grimes was not downed until he had reached the Massillon 15-yard line. On the next play Massillon was penalized half the distance to the goal line, giving Alliance the ball on the 7y yard line, with four chances to put it over.

Grimes, however, carried the ball across in two crashes at the center of the line and the Alliance rooters seeing the first victory in seven years over Massillon in sight, went wild with joy. Raber kicked the extra point from placement.

The visitors brought their score to 13 points in the fourth period, after a steady march of 46 yards down the field. Passes figured largely in advancing the ball, one being completed for a gain of 20 yards and another for a gain of nine yards. Dickens carried the ball across from the one-yard line. Raber’s attempted placekick went wild. Shortly afterwards Trump, Alliance halfback, took a Massillon punt in midfield and crossed the goal line after a pretty run along the side of the field. However, the touchdown was not allowed, the umpire ruling he stepped out of bounds on the 24-yard line. From this point the visitors began another hammering attack on the Massillon line and had the ball on the two-yard line with two chances to put it over when the whistle blew ending the game.

A large crowd turned out to see the first game of the county series, approximately 3,000 fans finding places in the stands, a thousand or more coming from Alliance.

The visitors were far superior to the orange and black in the number of first downs scored. Massillon made the yardage seven times, five times in the first quarter and twice in the third period, but Alliance made first downs on 15 occasions, nine coming in the last two periods. Massillon completed three passes for a gain of 23 yards; had nine incomplete and two intercepted. Alliance completed five passes in nine attempts for a gain of 85 yards. Three were batted down by Massillon backs while one was intercepted. The local team was penalized 40 yards and Alliance 45 yards.

The high school students showed a much better spirit Saturday than in any of the other games this year. The cheering was far better than at any other time. The band too showed a little more ginger by getting out on the field and drilling between halves. It looked as though the spirit of the students had come back to what it used to be.
Lineup and summary:
Alliance – 13 Pos. Massillon – 0
Daly LE Straughn
Kunkle LT Fox
Miller LG Henderson
Dixon C Potts
Speidel RG Mauger
Hammontree RT Dommer
Raber RE Shanabrook
Keefe QB Grant
Dicken LHB Schnierle
Trump RHB Briggs
Grimes FB Laughlin

Score by periods:
Alliance 0 0 7 6 – 13

Alliance – Nagy for Millre.

Massillon – Foster for Laughlin, Gise for Straughn, Laughlin for Schnierle, Straughn for Gise, Gise for Fox, Anthony for Shanabrook, Fox for Straughn, Buttermore for Potts, Baltzly for Buttermore, Schnierle for Dommer, Garland for Fox, Fisher for Gise, Swaford for Laughlin.

Touchdowns – Grimes, Dickens.

Point after touchdown – Raber (placekick).

Referee – Shafer.
Umpire – Barrett.
Head Linesman – Howells.

Time of periods – 12 minutes.

Earl Straughn