Category: News

2022 Lift-a-thon Results

And energetic group of players and fans gathered in the WHS gym for the annual Steve Studer Memorial Lift-a-thon, the first in front of a live audience since the Covid-19 Pandemic hit the country.  Once again, Strength Coach Dan Studer did a fantastic job of organizing and conducting the event.

Three lifts were performed by each participant: clean lift, bench press and squat. Each lifter selected his preferred weight for each lift and then attempted as many lifts as he could until his arms or legs gave out.  A composite score was then used to determine the winner of each of twelve weight classes based on the total weight lifted and the number of reps.  Achievement medals were then awarded to the top three lifters in each category.  Here are the winners:

140 lb. weight class – Gage Gordon (Jr.)

  • Total Load – 780 lbs.

150 lb. weight class – Zach Leibler (Jr.)

  • Total Load – 815 lbs.

160 lb. weight class – Kyler Wiggins (Jr.)

  • Total Load – 775 lbs.

170 lb. weight class – Ma’Taeaun Frazier (Jr.)s.

  • Total Load – 825 lbs.

180 lb. weight class – Stephen Hogan (Jr.)

  • Total Load – 740 lbs.

190 lb. weight class – Freddie Lenix Jr. (Sr.)

  • Total Load – 875 lbs.

200 lb. weight class – De’Airre Pringle (Sr.)

  • Total Load – 1,005 lbs.

215 lb. weight class – Cody Fair (Jr.)

  • Total Load – 995 lbs.

230 lb. weight class – Dorian Pringle (Jr.)

  • Total Load – 1,025 lbs.

Heavy weight class – Seth Voshel (Jr.)

  • Total Load – 970 lbs.

Super Heavy weight class – Mike Looney (So.)

  • Total Load – 1,070 lbs.

For complete results, click here.

140 lb. weight class – (1) Gage Gordon, (2) Zahnii Berry, (3) Ransom Els

150 lb. weight class –  (1) Zach Liebler, (2) Jaden Welch, (3) Landon Smith

160 lb. weight class – (1) Kyler Wiggins, (2) Shon Robinson, (3) Adonis Marshall

170 lb. weight class – (1) Ma’Taeaun Frazer, (2) Trent Campbell, (3) Jameir Gamble

180 lb. weight class – (1) Stephen Hogan, (2) Chance O’Neil, (3) Riley O’Neil

190 lb. weight class – (1) Freddie Lenix Jr., (2) Marquavion Young, (3) Chris Fair

200 lb. weight class – (1) De’Airre Pringle, (2) Willtrell Hartson, (3) Kendall Thomas

215 lb. weight class – (1) Cody Fair, (2) Christian Kring, (3) Maverick Clark


230 lb. weight class – (1) Dorian Pringle, (2) Chase Bond, (3) Malachi Card

Heavy weight class – (1) Seth Voshel, (2) Brady Jones, (3) Chase Finnegin

Super weight class – (1) Mike Looney, (2) Isaiah McElroy, (3) Mike Mercurio



Moeller, St. Edward Highlight 2022 Massillon Football Schedule

Other than the McKinley contest, the highest attended game each year is the opener.  And Head Coach Nate Moore has another whopper on the slate for this year in Cincinnati Moeller.  The last time these two teams squared off was in 2006 in the Queen City as part of the Prep Classic, with the Crusaders coming away with the win.  After suffering through several substandard years, Moeller rebounded in 2021 to finish 11-4, losing in the Division 1 state semifinals to Springfield.  With several returning starters off of that team, they are expected to be strong again this year.

Lakewood St. Edward travels to Massillon for a third year in a row.  Two years ago, the Tigers let the game slip away on a trick play at the end.  Last year it was inexperience and injuries that resulted in a 35-18 loss to the eventual Division 1 Champions, their fifth crown in the last eleven years.  Incidentally, their only setback last season came in overtime against Moeller, by the score of 28-21

The Tigers return 13 starters plus several oft-used backups from last year’s 11-3 team that finished regional runner-up in Division 2.  With several of the returnees in key positions, they are expected to be particularly strong at quarterback, running back and defensive line.  Coach Moore will enter his eighth year and currently owns a 71-20 record while at Massillon, which includes three trips to the state finals.  He also captured the D2 title while previously at Cincinnati LaSalle.

Here is the full schedule along with some key data:

1. Cincinnati Moeller – H

  • League: Greater Cincinnati League
  • Playoff Division: 1
  • 2021 Overall Record: 11-4
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Lost to Springfield 22-21 in the state semifinals
  • 5-Year Record: 26-30 (.464)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 4 appearances; lost in state semifinals in 2021
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Defeated Massillon 48-14 in 2006
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon: Moeller leads 10-2
  • Bonus: Returns wide receiver Tennel Bryant and linebacker Joe Ginnetti, both of whom were Honorable Mention All-Ohio, and defensive lineman Chase Brown (2nd Team All-District).

 2. Canton GlenOak – A

  • League: Federal League
  • Playoff Division: 1
  • 2021 Overall Record: 3-7
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Lost 40-12 to Stow in Round 1
  • 5-Year Record: 8-40 (.167)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 2 appearances; lost in Round 1 both times
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Lost 34-0 to Massillon in 2021
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon: Massillon leads 13-4
  • Bonus: Last year’s 3-7 record was the best since 2017.  Returns 8 starters on offense and 9 on defense; 3 are 2-way players

3. Mansfield Senior

  • League: Cardinal Conference
  • Playoff Division: 3
  • 2021 Overall Record: 9-3
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Lost 13-10 to Parma in Round 2
  • 5-Year Record: 38-19 (.667)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 4 appearances; lost 14-7 in overtime to Trotwood Madison in 2019
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Lost 55-0 in 2005
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon leads 43-4-5
  • Bonus: 20-10 league record in the past five years with  one tie for first and two runner-ups; beat undefeated Aurora 27-21 in overtime to advance to the 2019 state championship game

4. Warren Harding – H

  • League: All-American Conference
  • Playoff Division: 2
  • 2021 Overall Record: 5-6
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Lost 35-28 to Austintown Fitch in Round 1
  • 5-Year Record: 28-24 (.538)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 4 appearances; lost in Round 3 in 2020
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Lost 49-46 to Massillon in 2021
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon: Massillon leads 58-25-3 (second-longest series)
  • Bonus: Returns 2 starters on offense and 3 on defense, including sensational quarterback Dalys Jett (2nd Team All-District), who last year against the Tigers completed 21 of 34 passes for 358 yards and 6 touchdowns and ran 9 times for 78 yards and a TD.

5. Lakewood St. Edward – H

  • League: None
  • Playoff Division: 1
  • 2021 Overall Record: 15-1
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Defeated Springfield 23-13 to capture the state championship
  • 5-Year Record: 53-10 (.841)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 5 appearances; state titles in 2018 and 2021
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Defeated Massillon 34-18 in 2021
  • Historical Series vs. St. Edward: 4-3
  • Bonus: Returns 2 starters on offense and 2 on defense, including defensive lineman Wyatt Gideon (3rd Team All-State)

6. Austintown Fitch – H

  • League: All-American Conference
  • Playoff Division: 2
  • 2021 Overall Record: 7-4
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Lost 48-28 to Akron Hoban in Round 2
  • 5-Year Record: 33-17 (.660)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 3 appearances; 2-3 record
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Lost 31-21 to Massillon in 2021
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon: Massillon leads 19-8
  • Bonus: Returns 5 starters on offense and 5 on defense, including offensive lineman Josh Fitzgerald and defensive back DeShawn Vaughn, both Honorable Mention All-Ohio, and kicker Josiah Berni (2nd Team All-District)

7. Middletown, DE – H

  • League: Blue Hen
  • Playoff Division: 3 – largest
  • 2021 Overall Record: 10-1
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Defeated Smyrna 28-22 to capture the Delaware state championship
  • 5-Year Record: 46-8 (.852)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 5 appearances; 6-4 record; 1 state championship, 3 state runners-up
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: did not play
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon: 0-0
  • Bonus: Lost last year to national power St. Joseph Prep, Philadelphia, 24-6; lost to IMG Academy in 2018, 52-7; defeated Smyrna in the 2017 regular season, but lost to Smyrna in the state finals

8. Canisius, NY – H

  • League: Monsignor Martin Association
  • Playoff Division: Inter-league
  • 2021 Overall Record: 6-4
  • 2021 Playoff Results: did not qualify
  • 5-Year Record: 30-19 (.612)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 4 appearances; 4-4 record
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Lost 23-13 to Massillon in 2021
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon: 1-1
  • Bonus: 2020 season was played in Spring 2021

9. (TBD) – H

10. Canton McKinley – H

  • League: Federal League
  • Playoff Division: 1
  • 2021 Overall Record: 9-4
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Lost 42-0 to Lakewood St. Edward in Round 3
  • 5-Year Record: 40-16 (.714)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 5 appearances; 5-5 playoff record
  • Last Time vs. Massillon: Lost 35-13 to Massillon in 2021
  • Historical Series vs. Massillon: Massillon leads 74-53-5; Massillon has won 10 of the last 11
  • Bonus: Returns 5 starters on offense and 6 on defense, including wide receiver Cynceir McNeal and defensive lineman Bryan Foster, both Hon. Mention All-District.  Three of four defensive backs return.

The book on Massillon:

  • League: Independent
  • Playoff Division: 2
  • 2021 Overall Record: 11-3
  • 2021 Playoff Results: Lost 26-25 to Green in the regional finals
  • 5-Year Record: 59-11 (.843)
  • 5-Year Playoff History: 5 appearances; advanced to the state finals in 2018, 2019 and 2020; regional champion in 2017; lost in regional finals in 2021
  • Bonus: Returns 8 starters on offense, including quarterback Jalen Slaughter (Hon. Mention All-District), running backs Willtrell Hartson (Hon. Mention All-Ohio in 2020) and Freddie Lenix Jr. (All-District), linemen Marcus Moore, Sam Snodgrass (Hon. Mention All-District) and Mike Mercurio, and receivers Ardell Banks (Hon. Mention All-District) and Jaden Welch.  Returns 7 starters on defense, including lineman Marcus Moore (1st Team All-District, 2nd Team All-Ohio), Michael White (Hon. Mention All-District)and Chase Bond, linebacker Maverick Clark, and defensive backs Freddie Lenix Jr., Jaden Welch and Zack Liebler.  Returns kicker Nolan Hendricks.


Jim Houston – Wall of Champions

Sometimes dreams come true.  As a young Jim Houston sat in Cleveland Municipal Stadium on a cold Sunday afternoon watching his brother Lin play for the Browns, he had one thought in his mind: that could me some day.  “I remember going to Cleveland Stadium as a 9-year-old to watch the Browns,” Houston said.  “I used to wonder what it would take to play for the Browns.  Playing for Massillon, Ohio State or the Browns was a dream.”  Later in his life, that dream would become reality.

Not only did he follow his family footsteps to Massillon and then onto Ohio State and Cleveland, he also became one of the few players to win national championships at the high, college and professional levels, all within his home state.  For his many accomplishments, he was inducted into the Massillon Wall Champions in 1964.

Houston was born in Massillon on November 3, 1937.  One of four boys in the family, he was the third to play football professionally, joining Lin (Cleveland) and Walt (Washington).  “The Houston family was a remarkable football family.  Lindell, Jack (Purdue captain), Walt and Jim (Ohio State captain) all played college football.  Lindell and Jim made All-American.  They were all good football players.  All of them.  They weren’t cocky.  Just down to earth fellas.  They always said that their brother Howard would have been the best of all.  He lost his legs in an auto accident.  They were all good boys.” – Luther Emery (The Independent)

“In Massillon it was understood, you go the extra mile to do what you can do to be successful on that football team,” said Jim.  “Extra training, extra work, extra effort.  Not only my brothers told me that, but my mom and dad were saying, ‘you’ve gotta do that.’” – Scott Shook’s “Massillon Memories”

But that dream was almost derailed before it began.  Astonishingly, Houston was cut by Lorin Andrews Junior High Coach Roger Price in the 7th grade.  It’s no surprise that he was devastated.  But his mother said simply to try out again the next year.  After gaining size and speed, he made the 8th grade team.

“I was determined I’d never get cut again,” he said.  “I tried out in the 8th grade and made it.  By the ninth grade I had started to grow.  It was kind of a reverse psychology thing.  You put a kid down and he’ll fight back harder every time.  I was determined I’d never get cut again.” – Ref. Scott Shook’s Massillon Memories

High School

Houston played initially on the sophomore team in 1953 at 5’-11”, 150 lbs., and then, having sprouted to 6’-1”, 180 lbs, became a starter at left end during his junior year under Head Coach Tom Harp.

The team finished 9-1 that year, but captured the state championship in spite of the loss due to a confluence of events.  Massillon had lost to No. 2 Alliance 19-7, but had defeated No. 3 Canton McKinley 36-6 and No. 4 Mansfield 18-0.  Meanwhile, McKinley defeated Alliance 26-6 and No. 9 Springfield 26-7, but lost to unranked Warren and Massillon.  It probably also helped that Massillon was the defending state champs.

In his senior year (1955) Houston played both offensive end and defensive end, although he was inserted at linebacker against McKinley.  The Tigers finished 8-1-1 that year, with a 13-7 loss to the Bulldogs and a 12-12 tie with Mansfield.  During that season, Houston caught 10 passes for 180 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for another.  Included in that were scoring receptions of 61-yards and 13-yards against Toledo Waite in a 32-13 victory.  He was also instrumental in gaining the tie with Mansfield.  With the Tigers down 12-6 with less than a minute left, Houston caught passes of 8 and 26 yards to advance the ball to the Tyger 6 yard line.  From there Don Duke powered it in with just two seconds on the clock.  Unfortunately, the PAT kick was just right of the goal and the game ended in a tie.

After the season, Jim was named 1st Team All-Ohio and subsequently accepted an offer from Ohio State.


Houston became a starter in 1957 during in his sophomore year under Buckeye Head Coach Woody Hayes.  Aside from his excellent blocking and tackling, he now weighed well over 200 lbs.  So he lined up at both offensive end and linebacker on defense and held that position throughout his remaining time in Columbus.  Jim caught four passes that sophomore year for 16 yards and a touchdown.  The team finished the regular season 9-1, including a win over Michigan, 31-14, with the lone loss coming at home against Texas Christian (5-4-1), 18-14.  As Big 10 Champs, they were invited to the Rose Bowl, where they defeated Oregon 10-7.  Following the win the Buckeyes were named national champs in the Coaches’ UPI poll (Auburn (10-0) was No. 1 in the A.P. poll).

Houston, Jim_1959The next year, Ohio State slipped to 6-1-2, tying Wisconsin and Purdue, while losing 21-0 to Northwestern.  But they did defeat Michigan, 20-14.  Houston caught four passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns.  After the season he was named both the team’s Most Valuable Player and an All-American.

Jim became captain for his senior year (1959) and repeated as the team’s MVP.  For the season, he caught 11 passes for 214 yards and 4 TDs, including a 100-yard game against Michigan in a losing effort.  The team, however, finished 3-5-1.  Nevertheless, All-American honors were again achieved.

OSU wouldn’t forget Houston in later years by naming him to the Ohio State Varsity O Hall of Fame in 1979 and then the Ohio State Football All-Century Team in 2000.  And America wouldn’t forget, either.  In 2005 Jim was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.


Houston’s dream of playing ball in Cleveland was realized when Head Coach Paul Brown used his No. 8 first-round pick on him.  Jim was also drafted by the Buffalo Bills of the AFL but, like his older brother Lin, he chose the Browns.  Coach Brown had him slated for defensive end, as he liked his size and speed.  At that time he was 6’-3” and weighed 240 pounds.  He also ran the 40-yard dash in 4.8 seconds, which was not bad for a big man.

But Houston would not stay at defensive end, for new coach Blanton Collier (1963-70) moved him to outside linebacker.  “Jim is a great athlete,” said Collier.  “I’m sure he would be a standout at any position he played in pro football.  He’s just naturally gifted.”

Houston said he liked the move, but noted that he still had things to learn.  “I’m a little nervous inside wondering about covering some of those speedy backs, but I really don’t get upset,” he said.  “Maybe because I’m used to playing under pressure.  There was just as much pressure at Massillon and Ohio State as there is here.  After a while you adjust to it.  Physically, it’s an easier spot than end.  You don’t have people stepping on you all the time.  You do a lot more running.  I’m down to about 233 pounds now, but I feel much quicker.  I think I’m beginning to do more of the things instinctively.  Toughest part of the job, of course, is the pass coverage.  A mistake there can cost six points.” – Charles Heton

Houston wrapped up his career in 1972, with the final two years coming under Coach Nick Skorich.  Along the way his many accomplishments included the following:

  • 186 games played, 148 as a starter
  • 14 interceptions for 313 yards and 3 TDs, with a long of 79 yards
  • 11 fumble recoveries
  • 29.5 quarterback sacks
  • 1 pass reception for 10 yards and a TD
  • All-Pro in 1964, 1965 and 1966
  • Co-Captain in 1968
  • NFL Pro Bowl in 1964, 1965, 1969 and 1970
  • NFL championship in 1964, defeating Baltimore 27-0
  • NFL runner-up in 1965
  • Overall team record of 121-63-5

And Houston did all this while early in his career maintaining his status in the military.  He was assigned as an active duty army officer at Fort Dix, New Jersey, and he used accumulated leave when reporting to the Browns for practices and games.  Later he was in the reserves.

In 1966 he was named a Cleveland Browns Legend.


When football ended Jim made home in Sagamore Hills, Ohio, and was Regional manager for Midwestern National Life Insurance Company of Ohio, fathering four children along the way.  But he never forgot his roots.  “Do you know what it’s like to have Massillon as your hometown?” he said.  “It’s the greatest thing going.  Everybody knows of Massillon, Ohio.  Everybody, unless they’ve never seen a football game ever.”

In later years he suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disease, known to cause cognitive problems in football players, along with ALS and dementia.  In fact, all three brothers suffered dementia.  He died on September 11, 2018 at age 80.

Tiger Legacy Thrills Visitors at the MassMu

Paul Brown Museum Exhibition:  Tiger Legacy: The Story Continues

Tiger Legacy: The Story Continues in the Paul Brown Museum within the Massillon Museum features 68 photographs of Massillon Tiger players, traditions, and special moments from the 2021 football season.


The Tiger Legacy project began in collaboration with photographers Gary Harwood and David Foster in 2011 as an artistic and cultural narrative documenting the 2011 and 2012 Washington High School football seasons and the community’s embrace and celebration of this tradition. A second phase, which dove deeper into community relationships, culminated in the exhibit Tiger Legacy II and a full-color, award-winning book.

Now, ten years after the first Tiger Legacy exhibition, the project combines unexhibited and unpublished images from the original projects, and new photographs depicting the enduring legacy of the Tiger football tradition.

Harwood is a member of the Teach Arts Roster for the Ohio Arts Council, he taught visual storytelling at Kent State University, and he is the co-author of Tiger Legacy: Stories of Massillon Football and author of Growing Season: The Life of a Migrant CommunityTiger Legacy was selected as one of the ten best photography books for the summer of 2016 by American Photo Magazine.


Located in the 2018 wing of the Massillon Museum, the Paul Brown Museum features regularly rotating exhibitions. The Paul Brown/Massillon Tiger Football History Timeline is always on display. It spotlights Paul Brown’s fedora, his Hall of Fame gold jacket, and a chronology of his career. The paralleling Massillon Tiger timeline spotlights the 1940 Massillon-McKinley game ball signed by the entire Tiger team and the milestones of Massillon’s high school and professional squads.


What:  Tiger Legacy: The Story Continues Exhibition
When:  Regular Museum hours through July 10, 2022
Where:  Massillon Museum, 121 Lincoln Way East, Massillon

Five Players Announce College Commitments

Five outstanding players from Massillon’s 11-3 regional runner-up from last season have recently selected their colleges for next year to further their athletic and academic careers.  Inside linebacker Nathan Depuy will attend Walsh University.  Kicker/punter Shane Rue will head to Ashland University.  Offensive lineman Ta’Jamere Nash will attend the University of Findlay.  Offensive / defensive lineman Jaiden Woods will attend Wittenbert.  And Nate Watkins will attend Alderson Broaddus University.

Depuy (No. 44) became a full-time starter in 2021 and finished third on the team with 65.5 tackle points, including 44 solos and 43 assists.  He also had a team leading 11.0 tackles for loss (10th all-time) and 1.5 quarterback sacks, in addition to six recovered fumbles, which set a new Massillon career record.  Against Austintown Fitch, Nathan was the leading tackler in a 31-21 victory, recording 9.5 tackle points, including 8 solos and 3 assists.  But fans will remember his 2-yard touchdown run at the end of the game against Canton McKinley in a 35-7 victory.  For his effort he was named 1st Team All-Northeast Inland District and 2nd Team All-Ohio.

Rue (No. 1) was the starting placekicker in 2021 and showed tremendous accuracy.  He connected on 46 of 47 extra points and 8 of 12 field goals, with a long of 42 yards, which came against Fitch.  Four of his marks are in top Top 10s of all-time season records.  On kickoffs, he averaged 53.9 yards and booted 17 of his 70 tries into the end zone.  Shane was also the backup punter, kicking 8 times, while averaging 36.1 yards per kick.

Nash (No. 72) was an starting offensive lineman in 2021 after serving as a primary backup the previous year.  From his tackle position, he helped the Tigers rush for nearly 200 yards per game.  Ta’Jamere was named Second Team All-Northeast Inland District.

Woods (No. 57) was a starting offensive lineman and substitute defensive lineman.  He was named 1st Team All-Northeast Inland District and 1st Team All-State for his offensive performance.

Watkins (No. 10) played outside linebacker.  He recorded 28.5 tackle points, including 24 solos and 9 assists.  He also had 8.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 quarterback sacks.  Nate was named Honorable Mention All-Northeast Inland District.

Congratulations to these Massillon Tigers.


Jaiden Woods
Jaiden Woods




Massillon’s Austin Brawley Commits to Kent State

Austin Brawley has selected Kent State University to continue his academic and athletic career.

“After a very long recruiting process.  I want to start off by thanking my Family & Friends for believing me throughout this whole journey, as well as for always loving and supporting me through all of my hardships.  Secondly, I would like to thank Coach Moore, Coach Hack, and the rest of the coaching staff for pushing me day in and day out to put me in the position I am today.  Last but not least I will be pursuing my athletic and academic at Kent State University.  Thank you Coach Lewis and Coach Cox for the once in a lifetime opportunity.” — Brawley

The 2-year starter had a stellar career for Massillon, excelling on offense, defense and special teams.  He was also a member of the senior leadership group.  On offense this year he was the second leading receiver, catching 35 passes for 585 yards and four touchdowns.  On defense as a safety he was second on the team with 72.5 tackle points (57-31), intercepted 4 passes, broke up another 13, recorded 2 tackles for loss and forced 3 fumbles.  On special teams he returned 20 kickoffs for an average of 24.0 yards per return, returned 27 punts for an average of 16.6 yards per return and blocked 7 kicks, which is an all-time Massillon record.  His 9 career blocks is also a record.  In fact Austin made major plays in nearly every game, including:

  • Pickerington Central – 7.5 tackle points
  • Canton GlenOak – 79-yard punt return for a touchdown
  • Reynoldsburg – 39-yard pass interception return
  • Warren Harding – 89-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to open the game
  • Lakewood St. Edward – 49-yard pass return for a touchdown; 60-yard kickoff return; team-leading 8.0 tackle points
  • Austintown Fitch – team leading 6 pass receptions, including a long of 50 yards
  • Euclid – 47-yard pass reception for a touchdown; pass interception
  • Canisius, NY – team-leading 4 pass receptions for 109 yards, including a 72-yard pass reception for a touchdown; team-leading 9.0 tackle points
  • Wooster – 44-yard punt return for a touchdown; team-leading 5.0 tackle points
  • Canton McKinley – 28-yard pass interception return
  • Columbus Independence – 53-yard punt return for a touchdown
  • Westerville South – team-leading 6 pass receptions for 70 yards, including a 40-yard reception for a touchdown
  • Big Walnut – team-leading 3 pass receptions; team-leading 8.0 tackle points
  • Green – pass interception

And let’s not forget his punt return against Perry in the 2020 playoffs, where he chased down the ball and returned it 80 yards for a touchdown enabling Massillon to open a commanding 28-6 third quarter lead.

The Booster Club Congratulates to Austin and his family.

2021 Football Season Wraps Up with Annual Banquet

It was a night of recognition at St. George’s Church for the 2021 football team banquet as several awards were presented to the players, officially wrapping up another successful campaign.  This year’s squad compiled an 11-3 record and a fifth consecutive trip to the playoff regional finals.  Only a controversial call at the end of the Green game derailed what might have been a chance to advance to a fourth straight state title game.  It was also a season marked by inexperience, key injuries, player interruptions and replacement starters.  But the team endured nevertheless and set the table for continued success.

Head Coach Nate Moore opened the event by thanking the many individuals and groups for their unending support.  “We have so much support,” he said, “and it allows us to keep doing this.”

Following dinner the assistant coaches presented the various participation awards, while expounding on each player’s individual achievements and effort.  Then the special awards, most of which were selected by the players themselves, were presented by various teammates to the winners.  They included:

  • Coach of the Year – Dan Hackenbracht (safeties)
  • Captain Awards – Darrius McElroy and Dominic Salvino
  • Brandon Burlsworth Character Award – Jaiden Woods
  • Thayer Munford ACT Award – Nick Hatheway
  • John Pizzino, Sr. Academic Football $1,000 Scholarship – Nick Hatheway
  • Paul David Memorial Academic Award – Jaiden Woods
  • Bob Smith / Bill Snyder Sportsmanship Award – Kurtis Miller
  • Offensive Scout Team Player of the Year – Anthony Hillard
  • Defensive Scout Team Player of the Year – Malachi Card
  • Lunch Pail Award – Jaiden Woods
  • Hardnose Award – Austin Brawley
  • Carl “Ducky” Schroeder Outstanding Lineman Award – Jaiden Woods
  • Offensive Player of the Year – Darrius McElroy
  • Defensive Player of the Year – Ryan Zentkovich
  • Special Teams Player of the Year – Austin Brawley
  • Lifters of the Year – Darrius McElroy and Dominic Salvino
  • Tom Harp Coaches’ Award – Dominic Salvino
  • Most Valuable Players – Darrius McElroy and Austin Brawley (the voting was too close to select just one)

“It was an unbelievable year,” said Moore.  “So much fun to be around.  An 11-5 record.  Five straight 10-win seasons.”  Four  particular games stood out to him:

Head Coach Nate Moore at the 2021 Football Banquet

Austintown Fitch – 31-21 win.  Down 14-10 late in the second quarter, Fitch’s quarterback connected on a 74-yard pass for a sure touchdown.  Only Ryan Zentkovich chased down the receiver and stripped him of the ball at the 2 yard line.  The ball then rolled out of the end zone for a touchback.  Three plays and 80 yards later Massillon took the lead and held on for the victory.  “Fitch, on the road, where they play good football,” said the coach.  “Facing adversity from every direction.  The table was set for an upset.  They had all the momentum.  But we kept fighting and made some big plays.  If we don’t get that game, who knows how the rest of the season would have gone.”

Wooster – 31-0 win.  Returned consecutive punts for touchdowns to take an early 14-0 lead. “Absolute domination by our defense and special teams,” said Moore.  The Tigers held the Generals to just 128 yards of offense.

Big Walnut – 38-0 win.  Regional semifinals.  Undefeated opponent, averaging 43 points per contest.  “Unbelievable game top to bottom,” remarked the coach.

2021 Victory Bell Repainted

Canton McKinley – 35-13 win.  Down 13-7 at the break, Massillon scored four second-half touchdowns in five possessions to put the game away, while holding the Bulldogs under 50 yards of total offense.  “No win sticks out like Week 10 against Canton McKinley.  We came out in the second half and really dominated the game, in all three phases.  Darrius McElroy completely dominated for a quarter and a half.”  It was the sixth straight victory over the Bulldogs.  McElroy would earn the Great American Rivalries MVP award.

“I’m not ready to leave this team,” summed up Moore.  “This football team was awesome.  I wanted to take them to the next round.  But we fell short.”

The underclass players will now look forward to January 3 when they resume workouts in preparation for the 2022 season.  Unlike this past campaign, the Tigers will have a wealth of experience returning, plus several outstanding players off last year’s 9-2 junior varsity team and 8-1 freshmen squad.  Massillon should be strong at quarterback, running back, defensive line, linebackers and special teams, with several rotation players ready for their turn at the other positions.  Based on this, look for Coach Moore to assemble another outstanding schedule that will challenge the team and help prepare them for a long post-season run.

Advanced Industrial Roofing in conjunction with ESPN990 presented the “I Went Through the Roof for the Tigers” award to the following players:

  • Offensive Player of the Year – Darrius McElroy
  • Defensive Player of the Year – Austin Brawley

Retiring Booster Club President Tim Boerner announced the 2022 president as Harry Haines.

All-County – Austin Brawley, Te’Jamere Nash, Marcus Moore, Riley Campbell, Dominic Salvino

All-District – 1st Team: Jaiden Woods, Marcus Moore, Riley Campbell, Nathan Depuy and Austin Brawley; 2nd Team: Freddie Lenix Jr., Te’Jamere Nash, Shane Rue, Camden Beasley and Ryan Zentkovich; Honorable Mention: Jalen Slaughter, Sam Snodgrass, Michael White, Ardell Banks and Nate Watkins (Austin Brawley was also named Co-Defensive Player of the Year)

All-State – 1st Team: Austin Brawley and Jaiden Woods; 2nd Team: Marcus Moore, Riley Campbell and Nathan Depuy

Several No. 1 performance records were set during the season, including:

  • Career rushing yards per game – Willtrell Hartson – 121.4
  • Single game punt return yards – Austin Brawley – 140 vs. Canton GlenOak
  • Single season punt return yards – Austin Brawley – 447
  • Single season punt return touchdowns – Austin Brawley – 3 (tied)
  • Career punt return touchdowns – Austin Brawley – 4
  • Single season kick returns – Austin Brawley – 20
  • Single season yards from tackles for loss – Nate Watkins – 70 (tied)
  • Single season fumbles recovered – Nathan Depuy – 6
  • Career fumbles recovered – Nathan Depuy – 6
  • Single season blocked kicks – Austin Brawley – 7
  • Career blocked kicks – Austin Brawley – 9
  • Single season PAT kick percentage – Nolan Hendricks – 100% (tied)
  • Career PAT kick percentage – Nolan Hendricks – 100% (tied)
  • Single season tackles for loss yards – Team – 382
  • Single season forced fumbles – Team – 15 (tied)
Darrius McElroy at the 2021 Football Banquet – Co-Most Valuable Player, Offensive Player of the Year
Austin Brawley at the 2021 Football Banquet – Co-Most Valuable Player, Special Teams Player of the Year
Ryan Zentkovich at the 2021 Football Banquet – Defensive Player of the Year
Dominic Salvino at the 2021 Football Banquet – Tom Harp Coaches Award

Five Tigers Named All-Ohio for 2021

Five football players from Massillon’s 11-3 team have been named by the Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association to the Division II All-Star Team.  They include:

  • Jaiden Woods – Senior offensive lineman – 1st Team  All-Ohio,
  • Austin Brawley – Senior defensive back – 1st Team All-Ohio,
  • Marcus Moore – Junior defensive lineman – 2nd Team All-Ohio
  • Riley Campbell – Senior defensive lineman – 2nd Team All-Ohio
  • Nathan Depuy – Senior linebacker – 2nd Team All-Ohio

All five were previously named 1st Team Northeast Inland All-District.  And all except Depuy were earlier named All-Stark County.

The Co-Offensive Player of the Year is Green wide receiver Trey Martin.  The Co-Coach of the Year is Rob Page of Big Walnut.

All-Ohio players from Tiger opponents:

Pickerington Central – D1

  • CJ Doggette – defensive lineman – 1st Team
  • Tyler Gillison – defensive lineman – 1st Team
  • Alex “Sonny” Styles – defensive back – 2nd Team
  • Kyle Imboden – offensive lineman – Honorable Mention

Canton GlenOak – D1

  • None

Reynoldsburg – D1

  • Markez Gillam – wide receiver – 1st Team
  • Dijon Jennings – quarterback – 2nd Team

Warren Harding – D2

  • Dom Foster – wide receiver – Honorable Mention
  • Kinkade Tyson – defensive lineman – Honorable Mention

Lakewood St. Edward – D1

  • Christian Ramos – quarterback – 1st Team
  • Joe Lavelle – offensive lineman – 1st Team
  • Michael Kilbane – defensive lineman – 1st Team
  • Zyion Freer-Brown – linebacker – 1st Team
  • Danny Enovitch – running back – 3rd Team
  • Giovanni Kennedy – offensive lineman – 3rd Team
  • Wyatt Gedeon – defensive lineman – 3rd Team
  • Joel Castleberry – defensive back – 3rd Team
  • Ben Lavelle – punter – Honorable Mention

Austintown Fitch – D2

  • Devin Sherwood – quarterback – 1st Team
  • Josh Fitzgerald – offensive lineman – Honorable Mention
  • DeShawn Vaughn – defensive back Honorable Mention

Euclid – D1

  • Claishon Ivory – wide receiver – Honorable Mention
  • Aiden Turos – kicker – Honorable Mention
  • Chase Smith – defensive lineman – Honorable Mention
  • Ryan Merrill – linebacker – Honorable Mention

Wooster – D2

  • Micah McKee – wide receiver – 2nd Team
  • Drew Rader  – kicker – 3rd Team

Canton McKinley – D1

  • Harold Fannin – defensive back – 1st Team
  • Stefan Monahan – offensive lineman – 2nd Team
  • Nehemiah Saipaia – defensive lineman – 3rd Team
  • Khris Williams – running back – Honorable Mention

Columbus Independence – D2

  • Jalin Sample – Columbus Independence linebacker – Honorable Mention

Westerville South – D2

  • Kaden Saunders – wide receiver – 1st Team
  • Tyler O’Riley – offensive lineman – 2nd Team
  • Brandon Armstrong – defensive back – Honorable Mention

Big Walnut – D2

  • Nate Severs –  running back – 1st Team
  • Garrett Stover – defensive back – 1st Team
  • Aiden Hernandez – offensive lineman – 1st Team
  • Nicky Pentello – wide receiver – 2nd Team

Green – D2

  • Trey Martin – wide receiver – 1st Team
  • Trevor Van Horn – quarterback – 2nd Team
  • CJ Dawson – offensive lineman – 2nd Team

Football Banquet Ticket Information

Date – Tuesday, 12/14/2021

Time – Doors open @5:30pm, Dinner @6:00pm, Awards @7:00pm

Location – St Georges Greek Orthodox Church (364 1st ST SE, Massillon, Ohio 44646)

—Ticket Information—-

Cost -$25 each ticket (cash or check only, Checks payable to The Massillon Tiger Football Booster Club)

Tickets Available

@Howards Tiger Rags (125 Lincoln Way W, Massillon, Ohio 44647, See Tim, Wednesday – Saturday 10:00 to 5:00pm)

@O’Reilly,s Auto Parts (2500 Lincoln Way E, Massillon, Ohio 44646, see Bill Brown, Monday – Friday 08:30-5:00pm)

@Washington High School Ticket Office, (Tuesday – Friday 7:30 – 1:30pm)

All-County Team Announced

WHBC recently announced its all-county team, which is selected by the area coaches, and six Tigers received honors.   Darrius McElroy was named the Most Valuable Player for Massillon.  The senior quarterback and co-captain completed 47 of 83 passes for 448 yards and two touchdowns.  He also rushed 84 times for 431 yards and 11 TDs.  Darrius was instrumental in leading his team to a 35-13 victory over Canton McKinley for which he was named the Great American Rivalry Series Most Valuable Player.

Other honorees included:

  • Austin Brawley (senior wide receiver) – Second on the team in receptions, with 35 for 589 yards (16.8 yds/rec.) and 4 touchdowns, with a long of 72 yards.
  • Te’Jamere Nash (senior offensive lineman) –  Helped his team rush for 5.6 yards per carry, which is ranked 5th among all spread offense teams and 15th among Massillon teams all-time.
  • Marcus Moore (junior defensive lineman) – Recorded 31.5 tackle points, including 19 solos and 25 assists.  Also had 10.5 tackles for loss with 2.0 quarterback sacks.  Also intercepted a pass against Wooster and returned it 53 yards, nearly for a touchdown.
  • Riley Campbell (senior defensive lineman) – Recorded 46.0 tackle points, including 31 solos and 30 assists.  Also had 10.0 tackles for loss and a team leading 4.5 quarterback sacks.
  • Austin Brawley (senior defensive back) – Senior defensive back.  Second on the team with 72.5 tackle points, including 57 solos and 31 assists.  Also had 1.0 tackles for loss, two pass interceptions, four pass breakups and one fumble recovery.  Blocked 7 kicks and returned 4 kicks for touchdowns.  He also set or tied school season records for punt return yards, punt return touchdowns, kick returns and blocks.
  • Dominic Salvino (senior long snapper) – Co-Captain.  As a result of consistently excellent snaps, the kickers were able to convert 59 of 60 extra points and 9 of 14 field goals.

Canton McKinley’s Harold Fannin was named Player of the Year.  Alliance’s Thomas Butt received the Jim Muzzy Scholastic Achievement Award.

Massillon finished the 2021 season with an 11-3 record and was runner-up in the playoff regional championship game.