Tag: <span>Ben Hymes</span>

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1996: Massillon 47, Akron St. Vincent St. Mary 7

Tigers go to the air for win No. 9

By Joe Shaheen
Independent Sports Editor

All you need to know about the thoroughness of the Massillon Tigers 47-7 thrashing of Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary Friday night as the Fighting Irish offense couldn’t advance the football past midfield until the 3:45 mark of the third quarter.

By that point, the Tigers had already built a 35‑0 1ead and were substituting liberally as looked they looked ahead to next week’s annual confrontation with the McKinley Bulldogs, who will play host to St. Thomas Aquinas this evening.

Program Cover

St. Vincent‑St. Mary veteran head coach John Cistone was matter-of-fact about his team’s demise in front of 8,766 at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

“Massillon is as good a football team as I’ve seen,” he said. “I’ve seen Ignatius on TV. But we scouted about three Tigers games … better … last year .. the last few years. I think. They’re pretty well balance. They’re real strong on the defensive and offensive lines. They pursue well. They have everything to be a great football team.”

The Tigers came into the ninth week wanting to establish some consistency in their passing game to balance an attack that has leaned heavily on the ground game the past three or four weeks. They accomplished that as starting quarterback Ben Hymes connected on 9 of 12 aerials for 195 yards and two touchdowns.

Hymes, who spent a season at St. Vincent-St. Marry before transferring to Massillon, was pleased with his performance.

“We saw some open guys and we threw it to them,” Hymes said with a broad smile. “Yes, I was glad to get a good game throwing the ball under by belt. We’re starting to get it all together going into the Canton McKinley game. We’re polishing it up.”

Hymes’ best throw of the evening came on the Tigers second possession. The Irish had just been flagged for pass interference on Devin Williams, giving Massillon the ball and a first down at the St. Vincent-St. Mary 38.

The Tigers offensive line gave Hymes airtight protection as he dropped back. Eric Lightfoot had a step on the St. V cornerback and Hymes hit him in perfect stride on the post pattern for the touchdown with 5:05 left in the first quarter. Josh Hose’s conversion kick gave Massillon a 14-0 advantage.

It also gave Hymes and the offense an extra dose of confidence, while forcing the Irish (and McKinley next week) to honor the Tigers passing game.

“We wanted to throw the ball better,” said Jack Rose. “The biggest emphasis this week was getting the passing game going again and throwing the ball where it is supposed to go and we did a good job of that.

“We needed to score some points tonight. We needed to hit some big plays. We needed for the quarterback to have some success. We needed to pass protect well. When Ben sets his feet, he’s pretty good. We were a lot more balanced offensively.”

The statistics bear out Rose’s claim. Massillon rushed for 207 yards and passed for 242 yards.

Brian Baer was Hymes’ favorite target this night, snaring four passes for 33 yards. Williams had three catches for 51 yards and a touchdown on a beautifully executed pump-and-go pattern along the left sideline that covered 19 yards with just over a minute remaining in the first half.

Massillon opened the game by marching 72 yards in 14 plays. Christian Morgan carried on seven of those snaps, crashing into the end zone from four yards out at 6:54 of the first period. Hose converted to make it a 7-0 game.

After the Irish went three-and-out, Hymes hit Lightfoot on the post pattern to make it a 14-0 game.

St. Vincent-St. Mary continued to struggle on its second possession. On second and 15 from its own 12, quarterback Rob Adamson went deep. But Lightfoot made a sensational, leaping interception at the 47. The senior safety was escorted down the left sideline by a cadre of Tiger blockers and dove into the end zone for the touch. Hose again was perfect and Massillon led 21-0 with just over four minutes remaining in the first period.

The Irish got one first down on their next possession but were force to punt from their 38. Massillon took over at its 30 and again began to drive the football. On second and 15 from the 25, Hymes hooked up with Baer for 16 yards over the middle. Two plays later it was Hymes and Williams making the connection for 27 yards to the Irish 23.

Six plays later, Elijah Blake found a hole over right guard and scored from three yards out. Hose’s PAT was true and the Tigers owned a 28-0 advantage with 8:33 left in the half.

Massillon upped its cushion to 35-0 at halftime when Hymes and Williams executed the hitch and go from 19 yards out.

The Tigers scored in the third period when Hymes hit fullback Jared Stefanko with a swing pass along the right sideline. Stefanko turned on the jets and 74 yards later was pulled down at the Irish 1. Morgan slashed into the end zone from there and it was a 41-0 game.

“The number one thing we were worried about was a letdown from the week before and looking ahead to the tenth week,” Rose admitted afterward. “Then you’re worried about injuries from guys not playing hard. It has been very difficult this week in the building because people are talking about the Moeller game and the McKinley game. But the kids were well focused and practiced very well all week long.”

As for Hymes, who admitted satisfaction at beating his old teammates, it’s time to prepare for McKinley.

“My main goal is to settle down until I get to the game.” he said. “If I had my choice. I’d be playing the game this Monday instead of next Saturday. This is going to be a long toward playing them for a long time now.”

First downs rushing 12 4
First downs passing 7 2
First downs penalty 1 0
Total first downs 20 6
Net yards rushing 207 91
Net yards passing 242 43
Total yards gained 449 144
Passes attempted 14 15
Passes completed 10 4
Passes int. 1 1
Times kicked off 8 2
Kickoff average 42.3 49.5
Kickoff return yards 32 87
Punts 2 8
Punting average 29.5 29.3
Punt return yards ‑7 ‑1
Fumbles 3 6
Fumbles lost 1 1
Penalties 2 6
Yards penalized 15 50
Number of plays 61 41
Time of possession 28:26 19:34
Attendance 8,766

ST. VINCENT 0 0 0 7 7
MASSILLON 21 14 6 6 47


First Quarter
MASS – Morgan 4 run (Hose kick)
MASS – Lightfoot 38 pass from Hymes (Hose kick)
MASS – Lightfoot 47 pass int. return (Hose kick)

Second Quarter
MASS – Blake 3 run (Hose kick)
MASS – Williams 19 pass from Hymes (Hose kick)

Third Quarter
MASS – Morgan 1 run (kick failed)
ST V – K Alvarado 2 run (Tricomi kick)
MASS – Tony Danzy 47 pass for Tip Danzy (kick failed)



Morgan 20-98, 2 TDs;
Blake 10-42, 1 TD;
Tip Danzy 1-20;
Hodgson 4-7;
Bradley 5-6;
Childs 2-6;
Autrey 1-6;
Hymes 1-4;
Stefanko 1-3.
St. Vincent
K Alvarado 5-56 1 TD;
Morgan 8-18;
Ake 2-14;
Short 5-11.

Hymes 9-12-195-1 2 TDs
St Vincent
Adamson 4-14-53-1;
Cook 0-1

Baer 1-83;
Williams 3-52, 1 TD;
Stefanko 1-73
Duffy Vance 1-47, 1 TD
St. Vincent

Paul Salvino

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1996: Massillon 28, Lima Senior 14

Heroes galore as Tigers roar

Lightfoot, Morgan key Massillon to 2‑0 start

Independent Sports Editor

Message delivered.

Massillon served notice to Ohio’s Division I football powers the Tigers are to be dealt with by handing powerful Lima with a convincing 28‑14 setback in monsoon conditions at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium, Friday. Only 7,363 witnessed what may well be a springboard victory toward a very special season for the orange‑and‑black

At the same time, Tigers junior Christian Morgan served notice to the Massillon coaching staff that he deserves to be the starting tailback, by rambling 77 yards for a touchdown on the very first play from scrimmage.

The 6‑4, 215‑pound junior who missed the opener with a bruised Achille’s heel, took a handoff from quarterback Ben Hymes and looked for a hole off the left side. Tackle Paul Salvino took his man inside and Morgan bounced to the sideline, where he broke a couple of tackles and was off to the races.

“I was nervous,” Morgan admitted. “I was just looking for someplace to go. Paul (Salvino) told me to go around on his outside hip. So I went around and broke a couple of tackles. Then I slipped but I kept my footing and I thought I was on television or something seeing all of that from space.”

Morgan confirmed he felt some pressure to produce after senior Elijah Blake rushed for over 100 yards last week as his replacement in the opener against Mansfield Madison.

“They were saying they were going to put Elijah in if I didn’t get the job done,” Morgan revealed. “When you know you’re not doing your job and they’re going to pull you any minute, you do what you got to do.”

Jack Rose recalled Morgan running the very same play in the opening scrimmage against Pittsburgh Penn Hills with less dramatic results. “He would’ve done the same thing over there if we’d have blocked it right,” Rose said. “He’s the type of back who’ll make people miss. If you just grab him, he’ll run right through an arm tackle.

“On that play, he’ll take it inside or outside depending on what he sees and how it’s blocked.”

Lima Senior didn’t travel over four hours to Massillon just to roll over after one touchdown. The Spartans came back to knot the score at 7‑7 with less than five minutes remaining in the first half.

After the ensuing kickoff, Lima quarterback Jimmy Morris ran the option from the Spartans’ 36‑yard line. He scampered around his right end and delivered a late pitch to running back William Bratton near midfield. Bratton, who rushed for over 170 yards last week against Toledo St. Francis, rumbled down the sideline to the Massillon 27.

Three plays later on third-and‑seven, Morris hit Craig George on a down‑and‑out pattern for a first down at the Tiger 15. Bratton, a 205‑pound senior, carried on three of the next four snaps, diving into the end zone from a yard out at the 4:30 mark of the second period. Jim Barker’s kick made it a 7‑7 contest.

Then Massillon displayed some championship mettle. After the ensuing kickoff sailed out of bounds, the Tigers moved from their 35‑yard line to midfield on a personal foul call against Lima. On second‑and-12, Morgan again found some space around his left side, advancing the ball to the Lima 40.

The drive appeared to be stalled when Hymes delivered a clutch strike to Brian Baer on fourth‑and‑eight to give Massillon a first down at the 15. Morgan and Jared Stefanko carried on consecutive plays to move the ball to the 3. Two snaps later, Morgan waltzed into the end zone. Josh Hose’s PAT made it 14‑7 with less than a minute until intermission.

“That drive showed a lot of heart and the quality of team they are over there, ” said Rush. “Jack has a very good team over there.”

“That was a great drive by our offense,” Rose said. “We had a couple critical plays in there and we were able to convert when we had to.”

Lima appeared to be on its way to tieing the game up a second time at the outset of the second half. The Spartans drove from their 20 to the Massillon 16 on six consecutive running plays. But the Tiger defense rose up and stopped the visitors for one yard total on their next three snaps. Nose guard Rico Person caught Morris behind the line for a yard loss on fourth‑and‑three to stall the march.

Then the Tigers’ special teams came up with a big play after Lima forced Massillon into a three‑and‑out series. Punter Eric Lightfoot boomed the ball 66 yards, over 50 of it in the air, to pin the Spartans back on their own 16.

“I’m not big on big plays turning a game around,” said Rush, “but that punt when we had them backed up was a big play I thought. It gave them a lot of momentum and took it away from us. We had held them and that hurt I think.”

But Lightfoot wasn’t impacting the game. On third‑and‑eight from his 22, Morris dropped back and threw the football over the middle Josh Kreider tipped the ball and Lightfoot intercepted. Some 37 yards later, the senior free safety was carrying the ball into the end zone and Massillon led 21‑7, with under five minutes left in the third period.

“I was just dropping back in coverage,” Lightfoot explained. “I saw the receiver crossing and I came over. Josh tipped it and it came right to me and I went all the way.”

“It’s nice to see us intercept a ball,” chuckled Rose. “Then to get the first pick and run it back (for a touchdown) in a game like this … that’s a huge, huge play.”

Again Lima fought back, driving from its 23 with the ensuing kickoff to the Massillon 5, where the Spartans’ had first-and‑goal. Four plays and three Lima timeouts later, the Tigers took over on downs and the outcome was no longer in doubt, though most of the fourth quarter had yet to be played.

Just to make sure there were no doubters remaining, the hosts marched 78 yards on 10 plays to close out their scoring for the evening. Morgan carried five times for 28 yards on the drive, including the final six over left tackle for a touchdown at the 6:55 mark of the fourth quarter. Blake picked Morgan up when the latter came off the field limping, carrying the ball on four consecutive plays and gaining 23 yards.

“They’re the best team we’ve played so far,” Rush said. “They didn’t make the mistakes. We panicked a few times.

“The Tigers are going to be very good. We scrimmaged Moeller and they’re better than Moeller. There’s no doubt about that. We thought they were going to throw the ball a little more, but they were able to run it pretty effectively on us all night long.” Morgan finished with 156 yards on 22 carries. He amassed 128 of those before the band show.

Statistically, the game was closer than the scoreboard showed. Lima out gained the Tigers 278‑264 and had one turnover to Massillon’s two giveaways. The Spartans dominated time of possession 28:55 to 19:05.

But it was the Tigers ability to make the big plays ‑ Morgan’s long TD run, Lightfoot’s booming punt and subsequent interception return for a touchdown ‑ that spelled the difference.

“I’ve coached a long time and I can’t remember a week of practice that went better than this,” Rose said. “Our sophomores all the way up to our seniors, they were into this week of practice. I knew we were going to have a great game and that’s a great credit.

First downs rushing 10 7
First downs passing 2 6
First downs penalty 2 0
Total first downs 14 13
Net yards rushing 215 207
Net yards passing 49 71
Total yards gained 264 278
Passes attempted 8 11
Passes completed 3 6
Passes int. 0 1
Times kicked off 5 3
Kickoff average 49.2 31.0
Kickoff return yards 0 0
Punts 2 4
Punting average 50.5 37.8
Punt return yards 13 0
Fumbles 4 2
Fumbles lost 2 0
Penalties 1 3
Yards penalized 14 35
Number of plays 48 60
Time of possession 19:05 28.55
Attendance 7,363

LIMA SENIOR 0 7 0 7 14
MASSILLON 7 7 7 7 28


First Quarter
MASS ‑ Morgan 77 run (Hose kick)

Second Quarter
LIMA ‑ Bratton 1 run (Barker kick)
MASS ‑ Morgan 2 run (Hose kick)

Third Quarter
MASS ‑ Lightfoot 37 pass interception return (Hose kick)

Fourth Quarter
MASS ‑ Morgan 6 run (Hose kick)
LIMA ‑ Bratton 4 run (Barker kick)


Morgan 22‑156,3TDs;
Stefanko 4‑41;
Blake 4‑29;
Bradley 1‑4.
Bratton 30‑173, 2 TDs;
Morris 12‑14;
Christoff 2‑12;
Cannon 3‑5.

Hymes 3‑8-49.
Morris 5-10‑63, 1 int.;
Collins 1‑1‑8.

Baer 2‑45;
Williams 1‑4.
Watkins 2‑33;
Christoff 2‑21;
George 2-17.

Paul Salvino

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1996: Massillon 33, Mansfield Madison 6

Tigers maul Madison in opener

Independent Sports Editor

The Massillon Tigers mar­ched 68 yards on 10 plays on their first possession of 1996, scoring a touchdown when a Mansfield Madison defender bobbled a sure interception and the ball fell into the hands of Ti­gers’ wideout Devin Williams.

It was that kind of night for Massillon, which rolled past a veteran Madison squad 33‑6 in front of 12,131 at Paul Brown Ti­ger Stadium, Friday.

Program Cover

The Tigers unveiled their new dropback passing attack against a Madison defense that had eight returning starters from an 8‑2 1995 campaign. Massillon quarterback Ben Hymes hit on 11 of 16 passes for 102 yards and two touchdowns. Just as important, the senior was not intercepted all night long and contributed a 30‑yard run to the goal line in his first career start.

But the play that set the tone culminated the initial drive of the season. On second and nine from the Madison 10, Hymes rolled right and threw to Brian Baer in the end zone. Rams safety Kevin Stamper stepped in and appeared to have a drive ­killing pickoff. However, the ball bounced out of his grasp and into Williams arms for the score.

Josh Hose drilled the conver­sion kick and Massillon was out 7‑0 at the 7:07 mark of the first quarter.

”We went right into coverage on that play,” pointed out Ti­gers coach Jack Rose. “Their free safety jumped the play and we didn’t see him. We were for­tunate, but Devin Williams has a way of doing things like that, you know. He always finds those tipped balls.”

Hymes made no bones about the fact he was lucky to avoid the interception.

“He was open in the end zone and I threw it a little behind him,” Hymes recalled. “But my guys worked hard and helped me out a little bit.”

Williams admitted he was fortunate to be where the ball bounced.

“I saw it bobbling in his hands,” Williams said. “I was in the right place at the right time and it fell in my hands. Part of that is luck, part of it is instinct and knowing where the ball is going to be at on that play.”

Madison crossed midfield on its initial possession of the even­ing, but a big hit by Tigers de­fensive back Henry McElroy on a third down completion stop­ped the Rams drive.

Madison earned one first down on its next drive but went three and out on the third pos­session of the evening. At that point the Tigers offense again got untracked. Elijah Blake ground out a first down at the Mansfield 42. Two plays later, with Hymes on the sideline be­cause of an open, scrape, Tip Danzy executed the option keeper around right end. He cut back at the Rams 30 and jitter ­bugged his way to the 12. A face­mask penalty moved the ball to the 8. On second and goal, Hymes found fullback Chris Au­trey with a soft toss in the end zone and Massillon led 13‑0 with 3:35 until halftime.

The Tigers defense continued to stifle Madison’s flex bone attack, holding the visitors to three first half first downs and 56 total yards.

“The defense really played well,” Rose said. “We can really snap to the ball this year. We’re a much faster team and that’s going to help us.”

But the Massillon mentor was worried at halftime.

“We’re up 13‑0 at halftime, but we had run 31 plays and only had 13 points to show for it, so I was a little concerned,” Rose said. “I told the offense they we­ren’t playing a real good tempo. There was no sense of urgency. The defense played with a sense of urgency. But overall, we made plays when we had to.”

If the first touchdown of the night set the tempo, the de­velopments just after the band show sealed the visitors’ fate. On the first play from scrim­mage in the third quarter, Madison quarterback Justin Larrick lost the handle on the football and Massillon’s Eric Lightfoot recovered at the Rams 19.

A holding penalty on the Ti­gers first snap moved the ball back to the 31, but Hymes found daylight around left end on the option keeper, before going down at the one. Raphel Brad­ley bucked in from there and it was 19‑0 with just 29 seconds elapsed in the second half.

Hymes hit a Tiger in the Mas­sillon end zone on the next pos­session, but was victimized by a drop or the orange and black would’ve broken the game wide open midway through the third.

Madison finally got its offense untracked late in the third quar­ter, marching 53 yards in eight plays. Larick hit Stamper on a seven‑yard scoring toss with just :41 remaining in the quar­ter to make it a 19‑6 game after three.

Massillon did not allow its guests to keep the momentum, however. On third and two from the Tigers 47 on the ensuing pos­session, Bradley found a gap up the middle, hurdled a Madison defender at the Rams 48 and sprinted untouched the rest of the way into the end zone. Hymes ran in the two‑point con­version and Massillon held a commanding 27‑6 lead with just under 11 minutes to play.

The locals closed the scoring when sophomore defensive tackle Gordon Biggums scooped up a Madison fumble and rumbled 51 yards to the Rams 9. Two plays later, Brad­ley dove into the end zone from a yard out at the 7:39 mark of the fourth.

Madison coach Dana Woodr­ing was matter of fact about the outcome.

“You have an opportunity to stop them down there deep and give your offense a chance to get going on the first drive of the game and they come away with a touchdown,” he said. “Then we didn’t start the second half off very good.

“The Tigers are a very good football team. We’re not going to take that away from them. They were the better team. They did the things they do well. They ran the off tackle very well. They have quick kids at the receiver spot. We had a lot of trouble manning up with them.”

First downs rushing 9 7
First downs passing 5 5
First downs penalty 0 0
Total first downs 14 12
Net yards rushing 176 139
Net yards passing 102 111
Total yards gained 278 250
Passes attempted 16 21
Passes completed 11 11
Passes int. 0 0
Times kicked off 6 2
Kickoff average 53.7 42.5
Kickoff return yards 26 80
Punts 4 6
Punting average 37.8 32.3
Punt return yards 41 0
Fumbles 4 4
Fumbles lost 1 3
Penalties 4 2
Yards penalized 32 14
Number of plays 56 54
Time of possession 26:06 21:54
Attendance 12,131

MADISON 7 6 6 14 33
MASSILLON 0 0 6 0 6


First Quarter
MASS ‑ Williams 9 pass from Hymes (Hose kick)

Second Quarter
MASS ‑ Autrey 6 pass from Hymes (kick failed)

Third Quarter
MASS ‑ Bradley 1 run (run failed)
MAD ‑ Stamper 7 pass from Larrick (run failed)

Fourth Quarter
MASS ‑ Blake 52 run (Hymes run)
MASS ‑ Bradley 1 run (kick failed)


Blake 8‑106, 1 TD;
Danzy 2‑27;
Hymes 15‑26;
Bradley 9‑22,2 TDs;
Chapman 3‑6;
Childs 1 ‑1.
Lantz 13-­59;
Deel 6‑25;
Larrick 6‑23;
Kilgore 3‑22.

Hymes 11‑16‑102, 2 TDs;
Larrick 11‑21‑111, 1 TD.

Williams 4‑30, 1 TD;
Baer 4‑30;
Martin 2‑46;
Autrey 1‑6, 1 TD.
Deel 5‑19;
Stamper 2‑13, 1 TD;
Henson 2‑33;
Hunt 1‑26;
Trammell 1­-20.

Paul Salvino