WASHINGTON HIGH CAPITALIZES ON BREAKS TO DEFEAT NILES 8-0
SAFETY AND FUMBLE PAVE WAY FOR THIRD CONSECUTIVE VICTORY
By LUTHER EMERY
Making the breaks by fast rushing and taking advantage of them, Washington high school won its third victory of the season on Massillon Field Friday evening, defeating a stubborn, fighting Niles’ eleven 8-0 in an N.E.O. league encounter.
It was not an upset, though the Tigers can consider themselves fortunate that they pulled through with a victory, for Niles, it seems could have won just as well, but lacked a little something, perhaps alertness and fly paper, to keep in the running.
Races 55 Yards For Touchdown
With 5,000 people in the stands and on the sidelines, the two teams put up a great battle, the score being in doubt for three and one-half periods until Krier picked a fumbled pass out of the air and raced 55 yards for a touchdown while the crowd roared and Niles groaned. That gave the Tigers six points and brought their score to eight, they having tallied a safety in the second period when in a mix-up in signals the Niles center passed the ball over the goal line where it was downed by Petty with Brunker and Lohr, Tige ends on top of him.
Fast charging on the part of the Massillon team helped to make those breaks and alertness on the part of the Tiger players took advantage of them. They were always on the ball.
Heralded as a veteran and powerful team, Niles came to Massillon Friday evening fresh from an 18-0 conquest of Salem last week and feeling confident that the pelt of the Tiger would be back in Niles today.
Start Early Drive
The visitors even looked their part the first time they secured possession of the ball and drove two wedges into the Massillon line for first downs. Then the local team braced. From then on until the fourth quarter Niles had to fight for every yard and failed to make a first down again until the fourth quarter when it rolled up four of them, two on forward passes.
The ability of two backfield men, Woods especially and Antennuci, veteran of last year, made the visitors threat from start to finish. Frequently on the first down, one of the two would get away for a five to seven yard gain, but the second or third down invariably found a Massillon player crashing through to toss the ball carrier for a loss of several yards forcing his team to punt.
Niles had a fine line drive and from the start of the game it appeared as though the visitors would aim their attack on the center of the Massillon forward wall. Fairly successful at first they found the Tiger forwards getting down low and grabbing them by the shoe tops as they came though.
Touchdown Not Allowed
The Niles offense actually crossed the goal line before the Tigers succeeded in stopping them, but the ball was called back for an infraction of the rules, using the hands on offense and the touchdown was not allowed and a 15-yard penalty inflicted on the visitors.
Niles had gained the ball on a punt, a 15-yard penalty inflicted on the Massillon team for tackling a runner after he had signaled for a fair catch, advancing the pigskin for first down on the Massillon 15-yard line. Three plays gained but four yards and on the fourth down a triple pass, Antennuci to Woods to Petty sent Petty around the Massillon left end for a touchdown. The play was not allowed however, for Referee Jenkins caught a Niles player using his hands illegally on the offense and the ball was brought back and Niles was penalized 15 yards. The visitors never succeeded in getting that near the Massillon goal the remainder of the game.
The same triple pass was in the process of execution when Krier slipped through to snare the ball and race 55 yards for the only touchdown of the game in the fourth quarter. The ball was on the Massillon 45-yard line with third down coming and four yards to go when Quarterback Infante called for the triple pass. Antennuci took the ball and swung around toward his left end but when he attempted to hand it to Woods who was circling toward the right end, Woods bobbled the ball and as it popped out of his hands Krier, Tiger guard came crashing through to snare it before it could touch the ground and race unmolested 55 yards for a touchdown. Had the ball touched the ground before being recovered by the Massillon player it would have been first down at the point of recovery. A runner cannot recover a fumble that has touched the ground and run for a touchdown. Krier’s attempted placekick for the extra point went wide of the goal posts.
Niles Threatens in Fourth
Niles’ only threat after the first period came late in the fourth quarter. Getting the ball on their own 19-yard line the visitors came tearing back with a determination for a score that carried the ball to a first down on the 27-yard line. Two passes, one for 16 yards and another for 15 yards were largely instrumental in advancing the ball. From the 27-yard line, however Niles began to move backward. Antennuci received a bad pass from center and was tossed by Brunker for a 13-yard loss. Burkish batted down Antennuci’s pass and grounded resulting in two five-yard penalties for two successive incomplete passes, the Tigers securing possession of the ball on the 50-yard line. The game ended a short time later.
If there were any outstanding performers they were Andy Heben, the half-pint halfback who filled the shoes of Bo Kester and Brunker, right end.
With Kester kept on the bench because of an injured shoulder, Heben broke into the game and played every minute, running back punts and flashing around the ends with the speed expected of him. Brunker, several times broke through to toss Niles ball carriers for big losses. Burkish and Monroe tacklers likewise played a good game on the line. While Foster did little in any offensive way, his punting kept Niles back in its own half of the field. He likewise placed two balls outside back of the 20-yard line and only a bad bounce kept a third from going out on the one-yard line.
The size of the crowd undoubtedly the largest that has seen Washington high play in three years, was a manifestation of the interest shown in this year’s team and conclusive evidence that Massillonians will turn out to see football when football is played. The Tigers are not loafing on the job. They tackled and blocked with ferocity last night, forcing Niles to take time out five times for injuries while the local team never once stopped the game for that reason.
Niles made six first downs to Massillon’s four and completed three passes out of nine attempts for a total gain of 40 yards. Massillon’s two pass attempts were incomplete. Niles was penalized 65 yards and Massillon 60 yards.
Line up and summary:
Massillon Pos. Niles
Lohr le Fasanelli
Burkish lt Gales
Krier lg Predika
Hoyman c Ragazzo
Schimke rg Kovalik
Monroe rt Kramer
Brunker re Snowball
Knowlton qb Infante
Schrake lh Woods
Heben rh Petty
Foster fb Antennuci
Score by periods:
Massillon 0 2 0 6 8
Massillon – Brinker, le; Jones, rt; Amic, fb; Snavely, lg; Mansbury, lh; Keller, re; Bray, lt.
Niles – Naples, lh; Hess, rt; Knight, lg; Honiak, qb.
Massillon – Krier.
Safety – Petty (tackled by Brunker and Lohr).
Referee – Jenkins (Akron).
Umpire – Michaels (Ohio State).
Head Linesman – Soller (Akron).
Time of periods – 12 minutes.