Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo

Tigers Smash Canton Lincoln 55-13
Massillon Team Comes From Behind After Lions Score First Touchdown


An inspired Canton Lincoln football team made a determined first period bid against the Washington high school Tigers before 11,728 fans here Friday evening but succumbed to Massillon’s power and went down to a 55-13 defeat.

The visiting Lions came out strong at the start of the game, grabbed a 6-0 lead with an
86-yard march in 11 plays and momentarily succeeded in stopping the Tigers. But a series of bad breaks were like pouring ice water down their backs and they cooled off as Massillon got the upper hand.

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The first period was a dilly, from a standpoint of close scoring, ending with Massillon in front 7-6. Lincoln scored its touchdown the hard way, returning the kickoff 21 yards to the 35 and slam-banging the rest of the way. The Tigers went 57 yards on a minus two for their ball carrying efforts. A 15-yard penalty against Lincoln and interference on an incomplete pass moved the ball from the Massillon 34 to the Lions 13. The interference was called on third down with 12 yards needed for a first down.
* * *
ONCE IN the shadow of the visitors’ goal, the local team struck swiftly, Homer Floyd going over on the first play for the T.D. and Tom Boone kicking the extra point to give the Tigers the lead.

The first was still in Lincoln and after an exchange of punts, the Lions seemed ready to roll again, but with a first down in their grasp, they were penalized 15 yards for illegal use of the hands. They were further cooled off when John Francisco intercepted a forward pass to gain possession of the leather for the Tigers.

After that there was nothing to it.

The Massillon juggernaut began to roll, marched 70 yards to a touchdown in the first minute of the second period, added two more before the end of the half, three more in the third and one in the fourth when the ranks were being filled by the 32 substitutes used by Coach Chuck Mather. Lincoln scored again against these in the last minute of the game.

It was a far better contest than that of a week ago from play on the part of the Tigers and from a standpoint of spectator interest.

There were few times out for injuries or penalties and the officials kept the game moving.

Then too, Lincoln had enough offense to keep the game interesting.
* * *
YOU WOULDN’T believe a team could be beaten as badly as 55-13 and yet show up so well in the statistics. The Lions tallied 20 first downs to Massillon’s 21 and gained 329 yards, sufficient to win most games. The Tigers gained 452 yards and lost 28 for a net of 424. Lincoln finished with a net of 305.

Had it not been for its first period hard luck, Lincoln might have made even more of a fight of it.

However, there should have been no doubt in the mind of any spectator but that the Tigers were by far the stronger team.

They were much smoother than a week ago, though dents were made in their armor at times as the Lincoln backs frequently ripped for yardage and completed 12 of 28 passes.

Coach Mather was in a good mood after the game. “I thought we looked better tonight, didn’t you?” he asked. “We were a lot smoother,” he said, and then hastened off to make a final check of members of the team. He found them in good condition. John Francisco had him worried when he sustained a bruised leg, but it did not appear to bother him to any extent after the game. “I’ll be all right, coach,” said John.
* * *
THE TIGERS were better in several ways – not only smoother in their execution of plays. Tom Boone was kicking off and getting points from placement. He averaged 49 yards on his kickoffs and converted seven of his eight tries for extra point.

Pass receivers were running loose in the Lincoln backfield too, but Rich Crescenze was throwing the ball just a shade too far. Otherwise the Tigers’ percentage of completions would have been higher than four of 14. The 131 yards gained on the four are more impressive.

Long runs and long passes for touchdowns are the reason why the Tigers got so many more points for their first downs than did Lincoln.

The fancy stuff provided additional entertainment for the fans and served notice on future opponents they have to stop half a dozen backs to beat Massillon.

Slickest run of them all produced the orange and black’s third touchdown in the second period. Capt. Fred Schmidt of the visitors got off one of his few good punts that Johnny Francisco took on the 16. Johnny started for the sideline in a wide arc and slipped the ball to Floyd who was coming from the opposite direction. Francisco was on the 10 when he made the handoff and Floyd tore full steam along the east sideline behind fine blocking to race 90 yards and across the north goal with the ball.
* * *
THE FOURTH T.D. came on a pass from Crescenze to Traylor good for 52 yards and almost as many cheers. Another in the third to Boone gained 25 and a touchdown while Francisco went 20 yards and Bill Stone 33 yards for other third period scores. The last one was lugged over by Willie Longshore on an 18-yard jaunt around left end.

The victory was the second of the season for the Tigers and the defeat was the first of the year for Lincoln. Washington high now has 15 triumphs in a row or 35 in its last 36 games. The record will be threatened next Friday night when Lima Central, boasting one of its best teams in years, comes here.

It will be the first engagement between teams of the two schools and interest is so high in Lima that the school is chartering a special train for students and fans and two radio stations are making tape recordings to be played back Saturday to their home-town fans.
* * *
THE TIGERS kicked off to Lincoln to start last night’s ball game and it seemed just what the Lions wanted. They got back to the 35 with the ball and reeled off five first downs as they passed and marched their way to the two. They sent little Vic DeOrio into the slot and he got over for the six points.

Longshore brought Dave Muntean’s kickoff back to the 34. Traylor was thrown for a loss of four but Lincoln was penalized 15 yards. The Lions dropped Francisco for a two-yard loss and Crescenze’s attempted pass was grounded. On third down he fired again and this time interference was called on the incompleted pass and the Tigers were given the ball on the 13. Floyd went over on the first play and Boone’s extra point made it 7-6.

Francisco’s interception of Don Nehlen’s pass on the 42, set the stage for the next score. Francisco and Traylor in five plays took the ball to the six, but it took four more to get it over from that point, Francisco diving across for the score. This was the only extra point attempt missed by Boone.

Next came Floyd’s long punt return after taking a handoff from Francisco.

Two passes produced the fourth Tiger score. Crescenze tossed 20 yards to Jim Letcavits and then the 52-yarder to Traylor.

A poor Lincoln kick that went out of bounds on the Lion’s own 25 paved the way for the fifth score early in the third period. On the first play after the punt, Crescenze threw 25 yards to Boone to score.

A rhubarb that followed the point after touchdown ended with the ejection of Floyd from the game and a 15-yard penalty on the Tigers on the following kickoff.

The officials held Floyd had punched a Canton tackle. Floyd’s version was that the Canton tackle had him pinned on the ground, was roughing it up and wouldn’t get off of him. Floyd said he had to force him off. The violation occurred after the extra point had been made.
* * *
AL SHILLING recovered a Lion fumble in midfield to get the Tigers off to their sixth T.D. Stone in two plays went to the 20 and Francisco the rest of the distance.

Stone scored on the first play of the fourth quarter on a 33-yard run to cap a 75-yard march in which Traylor and Francisco both got off long runs.

The Tigers’ final points were scored midway in the fourth quarter. Starting from their own 32, Stone hit for four, Francisco for 32. Traylor for 14 and Longshore went the last 18.

Lincoln took the following kickoff on its own 23 and marched 77 yards to score. DeOrio going over for the points.

The line-ups and summaries:
ENDS – Letcavits, Lentz, Lopez, Barrett, B. Francisco, Canary, Lorch, McConnell.
TACKLES – Schram, Dean, Woolley, Blocher, Hill, Moore, Feather.
GUARDS – Agnes, Eaglowski, K. Fisher, Shilling, Holloway, R. Maier, Gardner, Speck.
CENTERS – T. Fisher, Grant, Rohrbaugh, Spicer.
QUARTERBACKS – Crescenze, Porter.
HALFBACKS – Traylor, J. Francisco, Fromholtz, Duke, Longshore, Yoder, Wallace, Byrd.
FULLBACKS – Floyd, Stone, R. Johnson, Archibald, Boekel.

ENDS – Langman, Muntean, Hoobler, Harpst. Gillspie.
TACKLES – Sedlock, Capper, Brooks.
GUARDS – Kelly, Felton, Grainger.
CENTERS – Bryant, Parks.
HALFBACKS – DeOrio, Schmidt, Meiser, Volzer.
FULLBACKS – Ujcich, Zettler.

Score by periods:
MASSILLON 7 20 14 14 55
LINCOLN 6 0 0 7 13

Massillon – Floyd 2; Francisco 2; Traylor; Boone; Stone; Longshore.
Lincoln – DeOrio 2.

Points after touchdown:
Massillon – Boone 7 (placekick).
Lincoln – Schmidt (placekick).

Referee – Pianowski (Cleveland).
Umpire – Jones (East Cleveland).
Head Linesman – Machock (Elyria).
Field Judge – Ballenger (Kent).

Mass. Lincoln
First downs 21 20
Passes attempted 14 28
Passes completed 4 12
Had passes intercepted 1 2
Yards gained passing 131 94
Yards gained rushing 321 235
Total yards gained 452 329
Yards lost 28 24
Net yards gained 424 305
Times kicked off 10 2
Average kickoff (yards) 49 44
Yards kickoffs returned by 32 152
Times punted 1 6
Average punt (yards) 30 27
Yards punts returned by 103 6
Tiimes fumbled 0 4
Lost ball on fumble 0 2
Times penalized 3 4
Yards penalized 35 50

Jim Lectavits