Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo

Newman’s 4 TDs wreck Warren
Tigers storm past Panthers 34-0

Independent Sports Editor

MASSILLON ‑ A Newman reminds Washington High football coach John Maronto of the old days.

“Derick Newman is a throw‑back,” Maronto said after watching Newman score four touchdowns and help the Massillon Tigers hang a 34‑0 haymaker on Warren Harding High Friday night before 9,535 in Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

The win made the Tigers the first high school football team in the nation to reach 600 wins.

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“Derick can run over people,” Maronto added. “A few times tonight, it was B.Y.O.B. for him.”

B.Y.O.B. has nothing to do with Gator Ade. It stands for “bring your own block” ‑ if there’s no hole, make your own.

That’s exactly what Newman did on a first‑down running play over the right side of the line. He was hit hard at the line but shed the defender, cut to the outside, deflected two more tacklers and used his 4.9‑second speed in the 40 to finish off a 43‑yard touchdown run.

The touchdown, Newman’s fourth of the night, gave the Tigers a 27‑0 lead at 11:23 of the fourth quarter.

Newman bulled for 103 yards in 16 carries and was complemented by tailbacks Michael Harris and Mike Norris, who combined for 124 yards on 28 totes.

“The coach told me in practice not to try to run around anybody, to try to run them over,” said Newman, a 6‑foot‑2, 206‑pound senior. “I’ve been bothered by a pulled hamstring, and the only thing I was worried about tonight was hurting it again.

“Fortunately, my leg felt good. The game felt good. On the long run, I got to follow the coach’s advice and run over a couple of guys, but I got to run around one guy, too.”

The outcome left the Tigers with a 2‑1 record. Warren, 0‑3, has yielded 13 straight touchdowns without scoring.

Friday night, Warren’s Panthers simply got out muscled by some bigger cats.

“The size of their backs was a big factor,” said Harding head coach Frank Thomas, a former Tiger aide whose head coaching mark with the Panthers dipped to 14‑19, including an 18‑6 win over Massillon last year.

“On several plays, our defensive people did a good job reading the play, but we’re tiny to say the least, and against that big, physical team, reading the play wasn’t always enough.

“They have a great defense. We weren’t sure how good their offense would be. But it seems to he on its way.”

The Tiger offense racked up its season high of 328 yards. The defense permitted its season low of 65 yards.

That figured to happen against a Warren team which bore no resemblance to the good Warren teams of yore.

It could happen again next week, when the Tigers take on 0-2 Akron Central‑Hower, which is idle this weekend.

A showdown against Barberton, 3‑0 after a 12‑9 win over Mentor Friday, looms Sept. 28 in the Rubber Bowl. After that, the Tigers will host rugged Austintown‑Fitch, a 21‑12 loser to McKinley Friday.

But first things first, the Tigers can take a few moments to savor the first sign indicating they can develop into a state power.

“That’s a little more like it,” Maronto said of the Warren wipeout.

“I knew when we left the locker room the players were ready to play. They were wired in as a team. You could see their determination as a team. They took the field and they played together. With that factor going for you, winning will take care of itself.”

Victory No. 2 for Maronto was No. 600 for the Tigers.

“The people of Massillon have a lot to be proud of,” Maronto said. “I’m happy to be here and to be part of it. This is a tribute to all of the players of all of the past teams.”

Maronto thanked his assistant coaches, one of whom, Nick Vrotsos, has been a Tiger aide since 1958.

“Now we have 600 wins,” Vrotsos said. “People keep telling me, ‘Congratulations, you were here for the first one and the 600th one,”‘ Vrotsos laughed.

Friday’s game turned into a laugher with Newman’s long touchdown run. But the outcome was pretty well decided by halftime, when Massillon led 21‑0 and held a 137‑34 edge in total yards.

The defense and special teams deserve heavy credit for the first three touchdowns. The Tigers kicked off and held Warren to three yards, but they stalled, too, after getting the ball on a punt. Warren got the ball back on a punt, but on third‑and‑nine, Hoagy Pfisterer blind‑sided quarterback Brian Hendrickson, whose fumble was pounced on by Tiger lineman Mark Harder at the 7.

The Tigers were in danger of repeating their penchant for having the ball near the goal line early in the game and not scoring, facing third‑and‑goal from the six. Newman solved the dilemma by following good blocking up the middle for a six‑yard touchdown blast. Mike Norris’ PAT kick made it 7‑0 with 3:30 left in the first quarter.

On Warren’s ensuing possession, running back Avery Patterson took a nuclear hit from Harder, forcing him to cough up the ball to “Tiger back” Daimon Richardson. Massillon had the ball on the Warren 28.

A 15‑yard pass from Paul Fabianich to Bart Letcavits and three rushes for 12 yards set up a first‑and‑goal on the 2. Newman tried the middle two times, plunging in for a score on the first play of the second quarter. Norris’ PAT made it 14‑0.

Norris’ booming kickoff and good coverage forced the Panthers to start from their own 11. The Panthers stalled and punted to Wes Siegenthaler, who made a short return to the Warren 45 in front of the Massillon bench.

The end of the play triggered a scuffle. A dozen Tigers charged from the sideline to the field, but Marrow was right behind them, ordering them back to the sideline. Warren’s Gary Snyder was ejected, not no penalty was assessed; in fact, the Tigers lost five yards in the melee, with officials incorrectly spotting the ball at midfield.

Newman made up the five yards on the first play. The Tigers methodically marched the 50 yards in 11 plays, with Newman going over the right side to score from the 2. Norris’ kick was good again at 4:13 of the second period, and the Tigers had their 21‑0 halftime lead.

Warren didn’t make it beyond its own 35 in the first half. The Panthers got that far as a result of a 15‑yard penalty.

Starting from their own 39 after the second‑half kickoff, the Tigers drove to the Warren 11 before Fabianich was sacked at the 23 on fourth‑and‑eight.

The Panthers then staged their biggest “drive” of the night, getting their second first down of the game and advancing to the 40. The drive ended there with a punt, and Massillon started from its own 30.

An 11‑yard completion on the Fabianich‑Letcavits connection put the ball on the 43, from where Newman broke his big run. Newman almost made the mistake of celebrating too soon, holding the ball aloft after running past the 5, then getting caught from behind as he crossed the goal stripe.

The Panthers kept the ball for two plays before Matt Swank’s interception launched a Tiger drive at the Warren 38. The Tigers ran out of downs at the 10.

Four plays later, Jerome Myricks picked off a Panther pass at the 30. Six plays later, Harris scored from four yards out with 1:34 left. Norris’ kick was wide, and the final score was cemented at 34‑0.

The Panthers’ strongest sniff of the goal line came on the final play of the game when Patterson rushed within three yards of midfield.

“Massillon is a state power‑they always are,” said Thomas, the Warren coach. “I can’t say how close they are to being at the top, but I can say they’re the best of the six teams I’ve seen, including scrimmages.”

“We lost last week, but we think we can win the rest of our games,” said the fullback, Newman. “We want to go to the state championship game.”

Beating a rebuilding Warren team was no sure indication such heights are in store. But the Tigers whizzed past an old nemesis without a hitch, and that stands for something.

First downs rushing 12 2
First downs passing 5 1
First downs by penalty 2 1
Total first downs 19 4
Yards gained rushing 249 45
Yards lost rushing 20 11
Net yards rushing 229 34
Net yards passing 99 31
Total yard gained 328 65
Passes attempted 14 13
Passes completed 7 5
Passes int. by 0 2
Times kicked off 6 1
Kickoff average 54.5 40.0
Kickoff return yards 19 99
Punts 1 4
Punting average 36.0 25.3
Punt return yards -8 4
Punts blocked by 0 0
Fumbles 3 3
Fumbles lost 0 2
Penalties 5 2
Yards penalized 34 30
Touchdowns rushing 5 0
Touchdowns passing 0 0
Miscellaneous touchdown 0 0
Number of plays 65 31
Time of possession 31:11 16:49
Attendance 9,535

WARREN 0 0 0 0 0
MASSILLON 7 14 0 13 34

M ‑ Derrick Newman 5 run (Mike Norris kick)
M ‑ Newman 1 run (Norris kick)
M ‑ Newman 1 run (Norris kick)
M ‑ Newman 43 run (Norris kick)
M ‑ Michael Harris 4 run (kick failed)

Duane Crenshaw