Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo



AS brilliant as the stars overhead, Alliance’s vaunted running attack swept aside a light but scrappy Massillon line in Mount Union stadium Friday evening to pile up a 30-6 victory before the largest crowd ever to witness a football game in that city.

A cloudless sky and a snap in the air, added zest to a perfect setting for the midseason football climax. All roads led to Alliance last night and spectators not only witnessed a grid game but got a taste of football themselves as they rammed the line in a rush through the gates to gain admittance to the field where 10,000 fans gathered to see the amazing red and blue sweep on to the Stark county championship and leadership in the Northeastern Ohio Big Ten race.

Tigers Hold Until Late In Half
Subjecting the Massillon line to a continual hammering the big and powerful Alliance team threatened in the first quarter but the scrappy Tigers yielded ground only after a hard battle and succeeded in staving off a score through sheer grit, intercepted passes, a recovered fumble and a 25-yard penalty slapped on the Alliance team.

After the first quarter exhibition, few in the Massillon stands doubted that the Tigers would be able to stand up under the Alliance battery and as expected the big red clicked late in the second period and crashed through for a score, its only one of the half, though it made 15 first downs to Massillon’s one.

Then came the third period, disastrous and again encouraging for Massillon. Two fumbles, early in the quarter, gave the Aviators two chances for touchdowns and they made the most of their opportunities, Russell going over both times which added to Stump’s second period score brought the total number of points to 18 for Alliance.

Tigers Score
Then it was that the Tigers were given an opportunity to uncork the weapon which they had brought to Alliance, and which they had hoped would bring them victory – the forward pass, and they bombarded the Aviators with such skill that for a moment the entire Alliance team was up in the air, Massillon fans were on their feet, one touchdown was scored and another might have been save for what Tiger fans charge was an error on the part of the officials.

Alliance covered up after Knowlton had flipped the ball to Brunker for a touchdown early in the fourth quarter and from then on the Aviators had the best of it, an intercepted pass and the loss of the ball on downs giving the Aviators two more scoring opportunities in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter, Russell going over for his third touchdown and Stump counting a second time.

There’s no denying Alliance has the better football team, as 23 first downs to nine attest, but the game was far more thrilling to the 10,000 spectators than 99 out of 100 encounters would be with a 30-6 score.

Alliance was for Alliance, Massillon’s 2,000 were 2,000 to the man for Massillon, but Alliance couldn’t restrain itself from offering a few cheers for the courage of the light Massillon team and its brilliant passing attack that opened up the game and time and again brought the cheering mob to its feet as an orange shirted youngster emerged from a huddle of red shirts and pulled the ball out of the air with amazing skill. It is not often a team will complete four passes in a row, or make a sustained drive for a touchdown with nothing but a forward pass as a weapon. Likewise fans seldom have the opportunity of seeing an eleven gain 165 yards from scrimmage through use of the forward pass. In other words the game was an unusual one, surprisingly fast and exceedingly interesting in spite of the one-sided score.

Up Against Good Big Team
A good little team can frequently defeat a slow big team but a good little team can hardly be expected to smite down a good big team. This in short sums up the reasons for the Tigers’ defeat last night. No alibis’ to offer, simply out-powered and outplayed, by a heavier team that played little more than straight football and supported the runner with brilliant interference.

Massillon, on the other hand found its running attack stopped completely by Alliance. The Tigers had hoped to run the ends ragged but this soon loomed impractical, for little 130 pounders like Brunker find themselves unable to take big 200 pounders like Pugh and Anderson out of the play and when ends can’t get the tackles, offensives on the flanks cannot be expected to gain ground. Then too, Alliance’s wingmen, Johnson and Karleski, were on the job, turning every side sweep into the tackles who could not be taken out by the light Massillon wingmen.

The Tigers gained but little ground from scrimmage, while Alliance picked up practically all of its yards on a straight running attack.

Tigers Heavily Outweighed
Advance weights received from Alliance indicated that the Aviators out-weighed the Tigers 16 pounds to the man, but Coach George Wilcoxon, tutor of the Alliance team was himself responsible for the statement after the game that his team had a 30-pound advantage. Russell, listed at 175, actually is 15 pounds heavier. Willie Pugh tips the beams well above 208 pounds, his listed weight. Compare Russell’s 190 pounds with Willie Hutsell’s 121 pounds or Knowlton, Shrake and Hebe, 135 pounders and you have some idea of mountainous task before the Massillon team last night.

Massillon fans, as a rule, are first to criticize their team but all criticisms last night and today favor the Tigers. Spectators are convinced that the orange shirted boys gave everything they had and put up a great game in face of the overwhelming odds against them.

Alliance unleashed its first attack late in the opening periods when Bergwall intercepted Knowlton’s pass on his own 30-yard line. Through a straight running attack, the Aviators’ carried the ball to the 10-yard line where Heben intercepted Russell’s pass and carried back to the 25-yard line before being tackled. Again the Aviators took the ball in midfield on Knowlton’s punt and carried to the five-yard line but were set back 30 yards on a
25-yard and five-yard penalty. Getting the ball on their own 35, the red and blue struck back a third time carrying back to the four-yard line where Farmer’s fumble was recovered by a Massillon linesman. Knowlton punted back to the 25-yard line and there followed the first sustained march for a touchdown.

Alliance Scores
Bergwall gained six yards and Russell snapped a pass to Johnson for a first down on the 10-yard line. Russell picked up three yards and Stump sallied through the remaining seven for the score. Pugh had two chances to placekick the extra point when Massillon was offside, but missed the uprights both times. The half ended a few minutes later with the score 6-0 in favor of Alliance.

Two breaks in the third period paved the way for a pair of Alliance touchdowns. Heben received the kickoff and carried back to the 30-yard line where he was stopped by Johnson. On the next play, Karleski covered a fumble on the locals 20-yard stripe. Farmer and Russell got four yards in two attempts. Stump wiggled through a first down and Russell came right back to smash through to the two-yard line and score on the next play. Pugh’s kick was again wide of the posts.

Again the Tigers received, Knowlton fumbling the kickoff on the 35-yard line and Hudson recovering for Alliance, Stump gained a yard and Russell three yards in two attempts. A five-yard penalty advanced the ball enabling Alliance to drive through on the next scrimmage for a first down on the 20-yard line. Farmer made two yards and Stump six more through right tackle. Farmer hit the same spot for a first down on the 10-yard line. Russell went over for a touchdown in two plays. Stump tried to kick the extra point but it was wide.

Aerial Circus Staged
This set the stage for the aerial circus, Knowlton returned the kickoff to his 30-yard line. Heben lost three yards but Knowlton stepped back and passed to Lohr for a first down on the Alliance 45-yard line. A second pass to Schrake gained a first down on the 23-yard stripe but an official called holding on the play and the Tigers were penalized 15 yards. The ball for some reason known only to the officials was brought back five yards and Alliance was penalized another five yards for being offside on an incompleted pass. Two passes, Knowlton to Lohr and Knowlton to Brunker brought a first down on the 12-yard line. Alliance took time out. Here the Tigers resorted to a bit of strategy they had been planning for weeks but it failed.

Knowlton attempted a short underhand pass through t he line of scrimmage to Schrake. Schrake got the ball in his hands but muffed it and an Alliance man pounced on the pigskin. The officials erroneously, it seems, ruled the pass a lateral though it was a straight shot through the line of scrimmage. A lateral is a free ball and consequently the ruling gave Alliance the ball and ended a serious Massillon threat.

That did not discourage the Tigers, however, and they continued to fling passes every time they gained possession of the ball. Russell finally punted out on the 10-yard line and Knowlton uncorked a pass to Lohr for a first down on the 30-yard line just as the quarter ended. On the first play of the second period, a 25-yard peg to Schrake gained a first down on the Alliance 45 stripe. Knowlton had a pass grounded but on the next attempt he shot the ball to Lohr who took it from out of a huddle of players for a first down on the Alliance 20-yard line. Finding all players covered, Knowlton ran the ball back and gained a yard, but on the next play worked a pretty fake and shot the pigskin to Schrake for another advance of eight yards. A second pass was grounded but a long heave to Brunker, who crossed over from his right end to the left side of the field, gained a touchdown. Krier was rushed in to placekick, but booted low and wide of the posts.

Alliance Scores Again
Alliance offered a better defense to the aerial bombardment thereafter. Alliance received, but a 15-yard penalty forced the Aviators to punt the ball to Heben, who was stopped on its own 40. On the next play Karleski intercepted Knowlton’s pass and Bergwall plunged through for a first down on the Massillon 25-yard line. Stump picked up nine yards at left end and Russell made it first down on the 10-yard line. Stump whaled center for four yards and Russell in two attempts went over for the touchdown. His attempted pass for the extra point was knocked down.

Possibly confused on downs, Dietz, substitute quarterback, called for a running play on a fourth down with seven yards to go and Alliance took the ball on Massillon’s 46-yard line. Stump got loose and ran back to the 25-yard line and before being tackled. Russell made three yards and Alliance was set back five for being offside, but Bergwall found a hole for eight yards and a pass, Russell to Johnson, gained a first down on the five-yard line. Stump went over from this point. For the fifth time, Stump’s attempted placekick was low and wide and the score remained at 30-6 the rest of the way.

Line up and summary:
Massillon Pos. Alliance
Lohr le Johnson
Birkish lt Pugh
Krier lg Monti
Hoyman c Hudson
Schimke rg Andreanni
Jones rt Anderson
Brunker re Karleski
Knowlton qb Stump
Schrake lh Farmer
Heben rh Bergwall
Amic fb Russell

Score by periods:
Massillon 0 0 0 6 6
Alliance 0 6 12 12 30

Massillon – Bray, lt; Brinker, le; Snavely, lg; Williams, fb; Hutsell, rh; Dietz, qb; Mansbury, lh; Swihart, e; Ripple,c.

Alliance – Russell 3; Stump 2.
Massillon – Brunker.

Referee – Mackay (Mount Union).
Umpire – Wagner (Mount Union).
Head Linesman – Gross (New Philadelphia).