1925: Massillon 17, Erie (PA) Academy 10
KAMMER STARS His Great Playing Brings Victory In Sensational Tussle
A golden tornado blew into Erie Pennsylvania Saturday afternoon, swooped down on the Academy stadium where it played havoc for an hour, and then rushed away, leaving behind a sorrowful band of rooters to mourn the defeat of their brilliant football team.
The hurricane game from the direction of Massillon and like all hurricanes, carried away the spoils, a 17 to 10 victory over the highly touted Erie Academy team which at times threatened to get the better of its Massillon enemy.
That game will go down in the history of athletics, being the kind you read about in novels, keeping the several hundred Massillon fans and the equal number of Erie followers in a constant state of excitement. Nerves were at their highest pitch but were relieved at the middle of the last period when the tornado went wild and wiped away its opponents.
Elwood Kammer played the part of Harold Lloyd in the “Freshman” in the last quarter, bringing victory to his team when defeat seemed certain. However, there was no comedy about Kammer’s performance. He was the backbone of the orange and black attack and besides scoring 12 of his team’s points, kept the Massillon offensive in motion during the entire game. He scored the points that spelled victory with a 30-yard run around right end, immediately after “Bill” Price had intercepted an Erie pass. While Thomas, Massillon’s right end, was not carrying the ball, he was the man who spilled two Erie men at one time when they were about to tackle Kammer in his dash to victory.
Erie, as expected, put up a great showing against the youthful Tigers. While not exhibiting a wonderful offense, the team showed a powerful defense when playing in the shadow of its own goal posts. Time after time the Massillon machine rambled smoothly down the field until Erie was forced to back up to its goal posts. Then with the aid of secondary defense playing close to the line, the Erie team stiffened and blocked the steam roller holding once on the one foot line. Hickey was the best ground gainer for Erie and several times slipped away for nice gains.
Massillon fans seeing chances for victory snatched from the air so often in the third quarter began to feel doubtful if their team would go home with flying colors, which they so richly deserved, after playing Erie off its feet. It looked doubtful in the last period when the orange and black made a first down on the one-yard line. On the first attempt Erie held, but on the second smash, Kammer managed to hold the pigskin across by a few inches, enough to score anyway. A pass from McConnell to Brown who sprinted to the one-yard line was directly responsible for the touchdown, the play bringing a gain of 35 yards. The Massillon attack became stronger when Brown was shoved into the fray, his ability at throwing passes aiding materially.
Vince Define, the best safety man on the team, was missed considerably. Vince started the contest but lasted only a few minutes, being put out for scrapping with Rumble, said to be Erie’s star guard. Vince’s ability at running back punts was especially missed, neither Brown nor Smith being able to return kicks as well as the Navarre flash. It appeared that Define should not have gone out of the game as Rumble took the first swing which started the argument. Newspaper reporters did not see Vince strike back, but Referee Doing evidently had better eyes for Define was ejected from the game as was Rumble
Head Linesman Metcalf, of Erie either lost his eyesight, mind or both, in the second period when Massillon held Erie for downs on the local’s 32-yard line. Metcalf, instead of ordering his linesmen in Massillon’s direction, declared it to be fourth down, thus giving Erie an opportunity to carry the ball again and make a first down. Shortly afterwards the Pennsylvania team collected three points when Hostettler booted the ball between the bars from placement. Those three points should never have counted. Referee Doing failed to note Metcalf’s error, at least he paid little heed to Coach Stewart and the Massillon fans who set up a clamor because of the error.
Erie’s other points came as a result of a blocked kick. Parsons, center, breaking through the Massillon line and blocking Smith’s punt. The ball rolled over the goal line, and Frame, tackle, bounced on the pigskin for six easy points. Hostettler did his part by kicking the goal from placement for the extra point.
The orange and black offense was far superior to that of Erie, rolling up a total of 17 first downs to Erie’s five, one of which came on Metcalf’s boner. The Massillon team made the required yardage seven times in the third period and six times in the fourth making thirteen first downs in that second half, while Erie failed to register a single one in that time. Theirs came in the first and second periods, two and three being made in each quarter respectively. Massillon made three in the first and one in the second.
While the aerial attack was not as deadly as it was a week ago, five passes were completed for a gain of 65 yards. Erie completed three for 20 yards, the orange and black intercepting two and Erie one.
Smith’s punting featured big for Massillon, his kicks often going for 50 yards, passing over the head of the Erie safety man and rolling to the goal line. His boots were well placed and high so that the ends usually downed the receiver without a return,
Massillon fans turned out strong in spite of the cold weather, nearly half the crowd being from this city. The 192 who made the trip in the special train, followed the band through the Erie streets to the Y.M.C.A. where a short rally was held. The band also played at the “Y” following the game. Many people made the trip in automobiles also. A dance was given for the Massillon people following the game. Most of the fans, however, returned immediately after the contest.
As the final whistle blew a rabid Erie fan rushed to the press box with the statement that Massillon put the best exhibition of football on the field that he had ever seen from a high school team.
Coach Stewart showed another player Saturday afternoon in “Ned” Pizzino, mascot of the team, who showed how forward passes ought to be caught and punts kicked. “Ned” was all dressed up in regular football regalia and entered the field leading a bulldog with orange and black colors. A Tiger would have been more fitting but Tigers are scarce, and “Ned” is glad of it.
The display of Massillon colors, the uniformed band, the mascot, and Coach Stewart’s way of trotting his team of 38 on the field brought out the remark from an Erie fan, that Massillon sure knows how to spread it on and knows how to back a team.
Massillon – 17 Pos. Erie Academy – 10
Gump LE McManus
Storrie LT Frame
Singer LG Sweet
Price C Parsons
Crone RG Rumble
W. Harris RT Little
Thomas RE Goodman
Smith QB Grassberger
Define LHB Hickey
Kammer RHB Fuller
Halpin FB Hostettler
Score by periods:
Massillon 3 0 0 14 17
Erie 0 10 0 0 10
Massillon – Laughlin for Define, McConnell for Laughlin, Dommer for Singer, Brown for Halpin, Halpin for McConnell, Agler for Gump, McConnell for Halpin, Kelley for Dommer, Agler for Storrie.
Erie – Church for Rumble, Straso for Church.
Touchdowns – Frame, Kammer 2.
Point after touchdown – Hostettler, Smith 2.
Field goals (by placement) – Halpin, Hostettler.
Referee – Doing.
Umpire – Martin.
Head Linesman – Metcalf.
Time of periods – 15 minutes.
Here’s How Massillon
Walloped Erie Gridders
The orange and black elected to kickoff and Halpin booted the ball to the five-yard line, Fuller returning 18 yards. Grassberger went off tackle for two and Frame then punted to Define who was downed on his 45-yard line.
Massillon was penalized five yards for offside. Halpin made four and Kammer added another yard before Smith punted 50 yards to the eight-yard line.
Grassberger got away a poor punt which landed on his own 31-yard line.
Kammer hit center for four and Halpin the same spot for another. Kammer made five more and a first down on the Erie 21-yard zone. Kammer made four more and a pass, Define to Thomas was blocked. Kammer went off tackle for five and hit the same spot for a first down on the Erie 11 by inches. Define lost two and a Massillon pass failed. Frame threw Kammer for a one-yard loss. Halpin then stepped back and kicked a goal from placement from the 25-yard line.
Score Massillon 3, Erie 0.
Fuller kicked to Define who returned to the 31-yard line. Kammer made four, Define three and Kammer then went through for a first down in midfield. Smith lost five, Parsons and McManus tackling. Define lost two more, Frame spilling him. Define punted 43 yards to the fifteen-yard line. A scrap ensured and Define and Rumble were put out of the game.
Frame slipped and lost two. Frame punted to the 36-yard line and Laughlin was downed in his tracks. Halpin fumbled and recovered for a loss of 11 yards. He repeated the stunt and lost five more. With the ball in midfield Smith punted over his goal line.
The pigskin was put in play on the 20-yard line. Grassberger made a yard and Hickey added two more. Frame then punted to Massillon’s 28. Smith returned the punt with a kick of 62 yards, the ball rolling over the Erie goal line.
Again the oval was put in play on the 20 mark. Erie was penalized five for being offside. Frame punted to Smith on the 38. Kammer made three and Halpin two. A pass, Halpin to Gump, was grounded. Smith attempted a drop kick, the ball touching a Massillon player on the 25-yard line and going to Erie at that point. Hickey and Hostettler negotiated Erie’s first down on two plays. Grassberger circled left end for 13 yards and a first down in midfield as the quarter ended.
Hickey made four yards and Grassberger passed to Goodman for 10 yards on the next play. The following five plays negotiated a first down for Eire. Head Linesman Metcalf losing his “noodle” and permitting the extra play to go by. Hickey lost three yards, Thomas tackling. On the next play he carried the ball making up his loss. Grassberger passed to Hickey for eight yards. Grassberger failed to gain. The ball should have gone to Massillon at this point had it not been for Metcalf’s blunder. Another play was dished out and Hickey gained five yards giving Erie an undeserved first down. They were penalized five yards immediately for being offside. Hostettler made a yard, and a pass, Grassberger to Fuller, failed to gain. Hostettler booted a goal from placement tying the score at 3 all.
Halpin kicked to McManus who was dropped on his 25-yard line. Frame punted to the Massillon 30 and Smith punted back to the Erie 38. Grassberger made two but Frame lost eight who then punted to the Massillon 25 yard line, Smith being dropped without gain. Smith punted to midfield. Hickey hit left tackle for three, but Grassberger lost two. Hostettler made two and Frame then punted to the 15-yard line. Kammer negotiated a first down in two plays but the orange and black was penalized 15 yards for holding. Kammer made four and on the next play, Parsons slipped through and blocked Smith’s punt, the ball rolling over the goal line and Frame pouncing upon it. Hostettler kicked goal.
Score: Massillon 3, Erie 0.
The orange and black kicked off to Fuller who returned to the 30-yard line. Hickey made six and Fuller three. Grassberger then plowed through for a first down on the Erie 15. Hickey was stopped without gain. Two passes were incomplete and Frame punted to the Massillon 20 as the half ended.
Smith punted to Frame on the 35-yard line. Frame immediately punted back to the Massillon 20, Brown returning the pigskin 28 yards putting the oval on the 48-yard line. Kammer made four yards on a line buck. He then lost one but on the next play circled left end for 23 yards planting the pigskin on the 29-yard line. Massillon fans were yelling wildly for a touchdown. Halpin made five more and Erie was penalized 15 yards for McManus holding, giving the youthful Tigers the ball on the 11-yard line.
Kammer made two and was stopped without gain. A pass was incomplete and Storrie dropped the next pass on the goal line.
Frame punted to the 45-yard line. Halpin made two yards and Kammer seven more. Kammer was stopped without gain. On the next play he made a first down. Kammer in two plays made another first down, placing the ball on the 10-yard line. On the next play he lost one and then carried the ball for a gain of two yards. Erie was penalized five yards for being offside and the orange and black was given the ball on its third down on the four-yard line. Again Erie’s strong line arose to the occasion and Kammer was stopped on his second attempt on the one foot line. Frame punted back to the 23-yard line. Brown’s pass to Halpin lost a yard. Kammer lost another. Brown’s pass was intercepted by Grassberger. Fuller punted to midfield. Smith made seven and Kammer two. The battering ram added two more on his next plunge bringing a first down on the Erie 40. Brown passed to Smith for a gain of 15 yards and repeated for a three-yard gain. Kammer made three and a pass, Brown to Halpin netted another. Kammer then fumbled on the
13-yard line and Academy recovered. Frame punted to midfield, Brown returning to the 47-yard line. Smith failed to gain, Brown, pass to Smith gained three. The quarter ended with Massillon in possession of the ball on Erie’s 40-yard line.
A pass was grounded. Brown passed to Kammer for 12 yards and a first down on Erie’s 28-yard line. Kammer made five and added four more. He then made first down on the 11-yard line. Smith and Kammer each added a yard. A triple pass, Smith to Brown to Kammer, was worked to perfection only Kammer was more than 10 yards behind the Erie goal line when he caught the ball and the play did not count. This was a piece of real tough luck for the Massillon gridders who had just executed as pretty a play as was ever put on the gridiron.
Erie was given the ball on the 20-yard line. Hickey failed to gain and Hostettler made two. Fuller than punted to his 36-yard line, McConnell taking a fair catch. McConnell heaved a pretty pass to Brown who scampered to the one-yard line. Kammer failed to gain, but on his next attempt carried the ball across, amidst a din of enthusiasm. Smith kicked the extra point.
Smith kicked to the 10-yard line to Hostettler who returned 15. Hickey made a yard and Price then intercepted Grassberger’s pass on the former’s 30-yard line. On the next play Kammer circled right end for 30 yards and a touchdown, Thomas giving excellent interference. Smith added the point.
Score: Massillon 17, Erie 10.
Frame kicked to McConnell who was stopped on the 30-yard line. Kammer failed to gain and made a yard on his next plunge. Smith punted to the Erie 33-yard line. A pass was grounded. Kammer intercepted a pass on the 30-yard line. Kammer made three around right end . Brown made two more. A pass was incomplete. Smith missed a dropkick by a few feet from the 30-yard line.
Erie’s ball on the 20. A pass was grounded. Grassberger made five around end. Grassberger punted to the Massillon 13-yard line. Kammer failed to gain. Kammer lost a yard. Smith punted over the goal line as the game ended.