Tag: <span>Bill Gutbrod</span>

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1989: Massillon 7, Cleveland St. Joseph 14

Wind, snow, St. Joe add up to Tiger woe
Massillon looking ahead in 14‑7 loss?

Independent Sports Editor

Bill Gutbrod was in pigskin paradise.

Lee Owens was in parochial pain.

So it went for the opposing head coaches in the wake of Cleveland St. Joseph’s 14‑7 high school football victory over the Massillon Tigers in a wind‑driven snow Friday night in Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

Program Cover

“There was one thing I wanted to do before I retire, and that was to win a game down here,” said Gotbrod, 64, St. Joseph’s head coach since the school opened in 1950.

“It’s so hard to win in Massillon,” added Gutbrod, whose team beat the Tigers in a 1987 mud bath at Euclid but dropped the only four other games in the series. “They do all these things to pysche you out.”

As for that parochial pain, Owens’ team is 6‑0 against public schools and 1‑2 against private ones this year.

Even the win was murder, an overtime sweat job against Akron St. Vincent‑St. Mary.

Overtime was a possibility again Friday when the Tigers tied St. Joseph at 7‑all on a convincing drive ending early in the fourth quarter.

The Vikings seized back the momentum, however, and swallowed seven minutes on an 80‑yard drive ending on Sam Woodfolk’s 6‑yard yard touchdown run with 53 seconds left.

Afterward, Owens looked like a man whose million‑dollar lottery ticket had blown away with the snow.

“I could see it in practice. I could see it in team meetings. We just couldn’t get the full attention of the players for this game, and I have to take responsibility for that,” said Owens.

Misdirected focus on next Saturday’s McKinley game was “the problem,” Owens said.

The Bulldogs also had their equilibrium jarred, losing to Youngstown Cardinal Mooney at Fawcett Stadium.

“It’s still going to be a classic matchup between two great teams,” Owens said, “but I was hoping we’d both win. The great teams win the big games and we didn’t win a big one tonight.”

All is hardly lost. The Tigers still figure to be in first place in Region 3 of the Division I playoff standings, with about 125.3 points. A win over McKinley would guarantee a playoff spot.

A loss, however, would put Massillon in a mad scramble among six contenders for four berths. The other contenders: Jackson, McKinley Akron Garfield (a 14‑0 conqueror of Buchtel Friday), Grove City and Walsh Jesuit.

The week 10 schedule: Massillon vs. McKinley, Jackson vs. Hoover, Walsh Jesuit vs. St. Vincent‑St. Mary, Garfield vs. Ellet, and Grove City vs. Westerville South.

A win over St. Joseph would have clinched a playoff spot.

Two turning points kept it from happening.

The first was early in the game. The Tigers seemed bent on making a statement, driving 46 yards to the St. Joseph 12‑yard line on second and five.
The drive stalled. The Vikings regrouped to lead 102‑92 in first‑half yardage. The halftime score was 0-0.
Turning point No. 2 came after the Tigers tied the game at 7.

A St. Joseph scoring drive that produced a 7‑0 lead in the third quarter clearly aroused the Tigers, who converted a third‑and‑16 screen pass to the 31 then rip‑roared 69 yards on the ground for the game‑tying score.

The Tiger defense held St. Joseph to three plays and a punt. But the offense couldn’t keep its edge and in turn had to punt. When Chris Roth’s punt bounced inside the 5 and Joe Pierce couldn’t quite trap the ball at the 1, the Vikings got the ball on the 20 on a touchback and launched their winning drive.

Viking quarterback Tony Miller kept the Tigers mindful of the outside option game and had the volume level where he liked it.

“We had the crowd out of the game, which is something we wanted to do in this big stadium,” the 5‑11 junior said.

St. Joseph fullback Steve Clark hammered away on the inside.

“Our big boys started clicking,” Clark, a 5‑7, 200‑pound senior wound up with 118 rushing yards.

The Tigers still had a chance to send the game to overtime when St. Joseph had the ball at the 23 with two minutes left. The Vikings lack a strong kicking game and a field goal into a nasty wind would have been unlikely from there or even 10 yards closer. But on first down Clark rumbled 14 yards to the 9. It was getting away.

On second‑and‑goal from the 6, Miller took off on an option run around left end. He was met at the 5 but at the last split second flicked a crazy pitch to halfback Sam Woodfolk, who caught it cleanly at the 6 and dashed into the corner of the end zone.

It was 14‑7 with 53 seconds left.

The Tigers made a last‑ditch drive. A pass from Lee Hurst to Rameir Martin would have given them a first down at the St. Joseph 30 with time for one more play but the ace receiver lost the football as he was hit, and St. Joseph recovered to end any Tiger hopes.

This isn’t how the Tigers wanted to go into the McKinley game but then, the Bulldogs are in the same boat.

“We’re set back now”, Owens said. “We feel some real anger in our meeting after the game. I was glad to see that our players snapped out of it right away. There’s only one thing to do … put this behind us.

St. Joseph, 6‑2, used the victory to clinch a Division II playoff berth.

Gutbrod called it “one of the top three” of his 259 coaching victories at St. Joseph.

Clark had it at No. 1.

“This means everything,” he said.

It’s different for the Tigers. The pain of this loss will fade if they connect on their “everything” one week from today.

A drive‑by‑drive summary of Friday’s game:

JOE ‑ Start with opening kickoff on own 25 after 90‑yard TD return by Brian Brown is called back by clipping penalty. Drive nine plays to Tiger 40. Stall on downs on fourth down hit by Craig Turkalj.

MAS ‑ Start on own 40. Drive 12 plays to 12. Miss 34‑yard field goal.

JOE ‑ Start on own 20. Drive six plays to 40. Punt.

MAS ‑ Take over on Viking 35 on punt of minus‑five yards. Lose ball on fumble on second play.

JOE ‑ Start on own 32. Lose yardage to 21. Punt.

MAS ‑ Start on own 49. Three plays and punt.

JOE ‑ Start on own 24. Eight plays and clipping penalty to Tiger 30. Lose ball on Keith Rabbitt interception one play after St. Joe receiver drops would‑be TD pass near goal line.

MAS ‑ Start on own 25. Three plays and punt.

JOE ‑ Start at midfield Six plays, Miss 37‑yard field goal attempt with 51 seconds left in first half.

Halftime score:
Tigers 0, St. Joe 0

MAS ‑ Start on own 12 after successful St. Joe squib kickoff. Three plays and punt.

JOE ‑ Start on own 43. Three plays and punt.

MAS ‑ Start on own 15. Lose yardage to 13 and punt.

JOE ‑ Start on Tiger 35 after nearly blocking Chris Roth’s punt. Clark carries seven times for 32 yards and goes over from 1 on fourth down. Chris Stevers kick good at 3:22 of third quarter.

St. Joe 7, Tigers 0

MAS Start on own 18 after another squib kick. Drive 82 yards for TD, 6‑yard run by Ryan Sparkman. Key plays: 16‑yard Hurst‑to‑Manion screen pass, 22‑yard Lamonte Dixon run, Sparkman rushes of 13 and 14 yards. Gary Miller kick good at 11:56 of fourth quarter.

Tigers 7, St. Joe 7

JOE ‑ Start on own 20 after kickoff and touchback. Three plays and punt.

MAS ‑ Start at midfield. Three plays and punt.

JOE ‑ Start at own 20 on touchback. Drive 80 yards in 16 plays, Woodfolk scores on six‑yard run. Key plays: 13‑yard completion (only one of game for Vikings) on second and 12, followed by 13‑yard Clark run to Massillon 46. Stevers kick good at 0:52 of fourth quarter.

St. Joe 14, Tigers 7

MASS ‑ Start on own 32 after kickoff. Drive to 30 with 10 seconds left, lose ball on fumble with seconds left.

St. JOSEPH 14­

First downs rushing 8 13
First downs passing 3 1
First downs by penalty 1 1
Totals first downs 12 15
Yards gained rushing 159 225
Yards lost rushing 10 10
Net yards rushing 149 215
Net yards passing 71 13
Total yards gained 220 228
Passes attempted 18 4
Passes completed 7 1
Passes int. by 1 1
Times kicked off 2 3
Kickoff average 55.5 43.1
Kickoff return yards 13 31
Punts 5 4
Punting average 30.0 24.8
Punt return yards 4 0
Fumbles 2 1
Fumbles lost 2 0
Penalties 6 6
Yards penalized 40 49
Number of plays 50 63
Time of possession 17:12 30:48
Attendance 9,000 (est.)

Individual statistics
(Mas) Dixon 11‑59, Ashcraft 8‑33 Dixon 7‑42, Hurst 5‑15.
(Joe) Clark 27‑118, Miller 17‑48, Woodfolk 8‑23, Bardner 5‑21, Splete 1‑5.

(Mas) Hurst 7‑18‑1 71.
(Joe) Miller 1‑4‑1 13.

(Mas) Martin 3‑41, Manion 3‑13 Sparkman 1‑17.
(Joe) Stevers 1‑13.

St. Joseph 0 0 7 7 14
Massillon 0 0 0 7 7

SJ ‑ Clark 1 run (Stevers kick)
M ‑ Sparkman 6 run (Miller kick)
SJ ‑ Woodfolk 6 run (Stevers kick)

Rameir Martin
Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1987: Massillon 0, Cleveland St. Joseph 8

Tigers are angry; Vikes are No. 1
Game‑turning safety might not have been safety, game films reveal

Independent Sports Editor

Does Saturday’s mud‑bath, 8‑0 victory over the Massillon Tigers mean Cleveland St. Joseph is the best high school football team in Ohio?

“Oh, yes … we are … by far,” St. Joseph linebacker Jerry Carlock said even before he had wiped a mask of mud from his face in a slippery locker room at Euclid’s Panther stadium.

A day later, back in Massillon,*, the feeling in the Tiger camp was that St. Joseph was not even the best team in the game. A great team, to be sure. But a dubious victor.

The outcome left St. Joseph with four straight shutouts, an 8‑0 record and a certain perch atop Ohio’s poll of Division I teams. The Vikings entered the week ranked No. 2 behind Cincinnati Princeton, which was upset by defending state champion Fairfield Friday. The Tigers, 6‑2, will be back home Friday to take on 6‑2 Middletown, who own a win over Fairfield this year.

In the film room at Washington High School Sunday night, coaches hurled paper wads at the screen in disgust over critical calls that influenced the scoring.

“I’m sure there will be a few extra people at the Booster Club meeting (tonight at 7:30 at the high school) who are curious about the game films,” one parent of a Massillon player said Sunday.

The players would normally see those films this afternoon. “We may not waste our time showing the players the films because of the total situation,” Massillon’s head coach, John Maronto said.

The game turned on a controversial safety with 4:27 left in the third period.

Tim Radigan, a 140‑pound St. Joseph senior who played the game of his life, put a 28‑yard punt in Downtown Coffin Comer. It skipped out of bounds inside the 1.

Erik White quarterback sneaked one yard, Jerome Myricks was stopped for no gain, Jason Stafford plowed ahead for two yards, and Mark Kester set up to punt from the back of the end zone.

Massillon has been playing football since 1894. It is hard to imagine field conditions ever having been worse than they were in Saturday’s rain. It was not surprising that the long snap to Kester was a bad snap that bounced in front of him.

Kester fielded the ball, straightened up and facing a stiff wind got off his best punt of the miserable night. However, an official ruled that his knee had been down in the end zone. St. Joseph was awarded a safety.

“The game films show what we thought at first had happened,” Maronto said. “Kester made a very heady play. In fact, he was picked by the coaches as our best special teams player in the game,

Kester, a senior who also plays defensive back and split end, said he thought he did everything he needed to do to avoid the safety.

First downs rushing 2 5
First downs passing 1 0
First downs by penalty 0 2
Totals first downs 3 7
Yards gained rushing 84 146
Yards lost rushing 2 10
Net yards rushing 82 136
Net yards passing 45 0
Total yards gained 127 0
Passes attempted 11 2
Passes completed 2 0
Passes Int. by 0 1
Times kicked off 0 3
Kickoff average 00.0 42.0
Kickoff return yards 64 00
Punts 7 6
Punting average 21.7 30.5
Punt return yards 0 0
Fumbles 2 0
Fumbles lost 1 0
Penalties 3 5
Yards penalized 33 30
Number of Plays 37 47
Time of possession 20:00 28:00

Attendance 8,000(est.)

St. JOSPEPH 0 0 2 6 8
MASSILLON 0 0 0 0 0

CSJ ‑ Safety, Massillon punter Kester’s knee ruled down In end zone
CSJ ‑ Howard 10 run (run failed)

Recalling the play, Kester said he went to his knee to knock down the errant snap, knowing he must not hold the ball with his knee on the ground. He then lifted his knee off the ground and picked up the ball, avoiding the rush and kicking it cleanly to the 35‑yard line.

“If he doesn’t have possession when his knee is on the ground, it shouldn’t be a safety,” Maronto said. “Mark did what he was supposed to do.”

The safety stood, and Massillon had to free kick the ball away to St. Joseph trailing 2‑0.

A good kickoff by Lee Hurst kept the Vikings from having great field position, as they had to set up on their own 38.

The Massillon defense, which played masterfully even though senior tackle and co‑captain James Bullock left the game early after reinjuring a sprained ankle, forced a punt after three plays.

Radigan, whose six punts for a 30.5 average were outstanding under the conditions, got off another good one, and the Tigers’ Steve Siegenthaler couldn’t hang on to it. St. Joseph coverage man Byron Hopkins pounced on the ball at the 15. Massillon stayed in the game, though, when Mark Freidly leveled star tailback Desmond Howard on fourth‑and‑one at the 6.

The Tigers moved to the 14 on third and two. Viking linebacker Scott Zele leveled Myricks a split second after the Tiger senior took a handoff and Massillon had to punt.

Most of the fourth period remained, however, after St. Joseph couldn’t budge on three plays, setting up another punt on fourth down from Massillon’s 48‑yard line.

Then … astonishment.

Radigan got off his punt but a flag flew.

Penalty against Massillon … 15 yards?

But what penalty.

“I was given two versions,” said Maronto, who spoke cautiously but clearly was disturbed by the development. “One was too many men on the field. The other was illegal equipment.”

An official exiting the field said the penalty was for too many men on the field. “The game films show we had 11,” Maronto said.

One observer reported that a Massillon player’s mouthpiece was dangling out of his mouth as the play unfolded. If, in fact, the call was illegal equipment based on the mouthpiece ‑ the call would have been technically correct. Based on the field conditions and the moment of the game, however, whistling the technicality would have been utterly flabbergasting.

The 15‑yard penalty moved the ball to the 33 with 8:05 left in the game. Howard ran 8 yards on first down, but the Vikings got a half‑the‑distance penalty after a facemask violation corroborated by the game films. Howard then ran 3 yards to the 10. On second down, he ran over the left side and into the end zone.

Many fans were shocked when St. Joseph head coach Bill Gutbrod, in his 38th year at the helm, elected not to put the game out of reach with a point‑after kick.

“I asked my man if he could give me the point and he was honest,” Gutbrod explained. “He said with the field the way it was, there was no way, he could get off the kick. So we went with a run. ”

The run failed, leaving the Tigers with 6:27 to try for a touchdown and tying two‑point conversion.

Massillon set up on its own 34 after the ensuing kickoff but had to punt after gaining just a yard on a pass completion.

Kester’s punt was fair caught by Howard at the St. Joseph 33. Massillon defense answered the challenge again, forcing a punt after three plays. Radigan got his last lick in, booting the ball to the Tiger 37 with 3:30 left.

There had been nothing to indicate the Tiger’ could wade through 68 yards of slop in a short period of time. But hopes soared when, on first down, White heaved a bomb over the middle into the arms of flanker Wrentie Martin. Martin was behind the defender but couldn’t get the traction needed to escape for a touchdown and was caught at the St. Joseph 18.

The hopes were dashed, though, when White threw four straight incomplete passes, the last of which far overshot Martin with 1:48 left. St. Joseph was able to run out the clock.

“I had guys open, and I wish I could have gotten them the ball,” White said. “Unfortunately, the ball slipped out of my hands a couple of times. Believe me, I wish I could have gotten the ball there. ”

On this night, the ball had a mind of its own. St. Joseph had several chances to take a lead in the first half.

Siegenthaler made a nifty return of the game opening kickoff, a squib kick, and Massillon set up on the 44.

A 42‑yard punt by Radigan, with a strong wind at his back, buried the Tigers at their own 13 with eight minutes left in the first quarter, one play after Bullock was carried off the field.

Punt exchanges enabled St. Joseph to get progressively closer to the goal line. First‑half Massillon possessions began on the 13‑, 5‑, 15‑ and 9‑yard lines.

St. Joseph possessions began in Massillon territory at the 38, 32 and 23.

The half ended in more controversy. A 23‑yard run by Myricks, who three times in the first half was one man away from breaking the same kind of touchdown run he popped in the mud at Austintown‑Fitch last year, put the ball near midfield.

On fourth and one from the Viking 47, a crazy looking play with men in motion was cut short when the Tigers were called for a delay of game. The Massillon camp contends a game official was holding the ball in a towel when it should have been spotted.

The penalty set up a punt, and the half ended with St. Joseph in possession around midfield.

The loss ended a six‑game Massillon winning streak but did not end the Tigers’ playoff hopes. If they beat Middletown and McKinley, they should amass enough points to finish in the top four of, Division I, Region 2. Massillon then would need a favorable ruling from the Ninth District Court of Appeals, which has been asked to overturn an OHSAA playoff ban against the Tigers.

St. Joseph has clinched a Division I playoff berth, setting up the outside possibility of a Tiger‑Viking rematch.

Statistics were predictable, based on the mud. St. Joseph held a 136‑127 edge in net offensive yards. Howard rushed 29 times for 90 yards. The Vikings ran only 18 plays on which the 5‑foot‑8 speedster did not have the ball.

Myricks also had the ball on more than half of his team’s 37 offensive plays. The 5‑foot‑11 tailback rushed 19 times for 73 yards and caught a pass for 1 yard.

The crowd fell short of the 10,000 figure some observers reported. It was in the range of about 8,000. The visitors’ side was a sea of orange; in fact, numerous Massillon fans sat in the home grandstand, and more than half of the throng may have been Tigertown rooters.

They went home disappointed after watching a strange game.

Said one fan dressed in orange, “I sure would like to see a rematch on a dry field.”

But in the St. Joseph camp, the feeling was different. “We’ve got to be one of the top two or three teams in Ohio, based on what we’ve done on the field,” Gutbrod said.

Added the linebacker Zele, “It feels great to be the No. I team in Ohio,”

John Miller
Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1986: Massillon 22, Cleveland St. Joseph 17

Tigers win … let the ‘war’ begin

Independent Sports Editor

MASSILLON ‑ The private war is over.

Let the war the world watches begin.

The smallest and quietest home crowd of the Tigers’ season ‑ 7,425 ‑ watched their boys silence Cleveland St. Joseph 22‑17 Friday night.

It didn’t titillate those in the elevated chairs. But it was a beauty at (black) eye level.

“Without a doubt, it was the hardest‑hitting game of the year,” said Ken Hawkins, a Massillon senior who had a big hand (and foot) in the victory.

Hawkins looked weary. He said he felt like he looked.

“GlenOak can say they beat us. Fitch can say they beat us. But neither of them can say they hit us like St. Joe,” he said.

Program Cover

The crowd will be bigger and noisier next time. Canton McKinley is due to show up at 2 p.m. next Saturday at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

“McKinley is next and all, but it’ll take a few days to get over this one,” said Hawkins.

McKinley has to worry about a Hawkins tonight. The Bulldogs face Austintown‑Fitch at 7:45 p.m. in Fawcett Stadium. Fitch’s tailback, Leo Hawkins, scored the two touchdowns that did in the Tigers 14‑10 in a mudbath four games ago.

A star the Bulldogs won’t have to worry about is Jerrod Vance, the Tigers’ standout senior linebacker, who suffered a knee injury in the fourth quarter Friday and is out for the season.

That took some of the joy out of the victory. But it was still a win as big as the season is long.

“We played with composure and showed the kind of team we are,” said Tiger head coach John Maronto. “It was a real important game, because it came right before the biggest one, which now is staring us right in the face.”

The win kept the Tigers in the playoff race with a 7‑2 record and packed drama in the injunction decision due the day before the Massillon‑McKinley game from Judge Sheila Farmer. St. Joseph is 4‑3.

The verdict on Vance is a tough one. The 6‑foot‑2, 232‑pound senior, rated as one of the state’s top college prospects, was to be examined today to determine whether his knee injury will require surgery.

Massillon trainer Pat Trainor said it already is known Vance will not play in the McKinley game. His injury occurred, as many knee injuries do, when his foot was planted and a player collided with him. It came on the first play of the fourth quarter. The biggest drama Friday came with hundreds of folks in the parking lot thinking the game was in the bag.

Massillon led 22‑10 as the clock wound toward the 1: 00 mark of the fourth quarter. On fourth down from the Tiger 29, punt snapper Todd Perdue hiked the ball over Hawkins’ head. The ball squirted toward the goal line. St. Joseph senior Bob Shaffner beat Hawkins to the ball and smothered it for a touchdown.

Perdue to Hawkins had been a reliable snap combo all season. And long before that.

“We’ve been together since ninth grade,” Hawkins said. “That’s the first time something like that happened.”

Tom Beckwith’s PAT kick made it 22‑17 with 58 seconds left.

Obviously, the onside kick was next. And it was scary. Beckwith’s squibber took a crazy bounce over the Tigers’ front wall and squirted toward the St. Joseph bench, with everyone in hot pursuit. St. Joseph’s Sherman Dean came the closest to getting the ball, but he knocked it out of bounds near the Massillon 40.

Then … confusion.

St. Joseph coach Bill Gutbrod thought his team would get another crack at the onside kick.

“I thought the rule was changed to make it an automatic penalty when the ball went out of bounds,” he said.

But referee Ron Giacomo whipped out his rule book and showed Gutbrod that there had been no such rule change. The receiving team gets the option to take the ball or make the penalized team kick over. So the Tigers took over where the ball went out of bounds. Quarterback John Miller fell on the ball three times, and the game was over.

“They’re an awful good club,” Gutbrod said of the Tigers, then mentioning the other two clubs to which his team has lost. “Lakewood St. Edward… Cardinal Mooney. There couldn’t be more than a 6‑point difference between Massillon and those two clubs.”

The stats sheet showed little difference between the Tigers and the Vikings. Both teams had 13 first downs. The Tigers trailed 204‑196 in total yardage.

Both teams completed four passes. The leading rusher for the Tigers ‑ bulldozer Mike Norris gained 88 yards in 18 carries. The top rusher for the Vikings ‑ waterbug Desmond Howard ‑ picked up 87 yards in 22 carries.

“Howard’s longest run was 10 yardsm abd that was a big factor,” Maronto said. “This is the only game I know of where he hasn’t broken a long one. He reminds me a lot of McKinley’s runner, Jeff Richardson.”

Both coaches spent much of the night trying not to remind one another of what they had seen on the game films.

St. Joseph lives by the wishbone attack, but the Vikings often lined up in the “bone” and broke out of it before the center snap.

And the Tigers, who typically pass times a game, crossed up the Vikings by throwing on the game’s first play from scrimmage.

The play ‑ a quick pass from quarterback John Miller to split end Jerome Myricks ‑ netted 11 yards just seconds after Myricks streaked 41 yards with the opening kickoff. That set the tone for a scoring drive of nine plays and 54 yards, capped by Miller’s 11‑yard rollout run through a huge hole on the right side.

The drive was kept alive when Maronto elected to go for it on fourth‑and‑12 from the 34. After a timeout, Miller drilled a 14‑yard completion to Myricks for a first down.

Massillon led 7‑0 following Lee Hurst’s PAT kick.

The Tiger defense stuffed St. Joseph on its first possession, but Myricks mishandled the ensuing punt and the Vikings’ Dale Kitchen recovered his fumble at the Massillon 32. That led to Beckwith’s 26‑yard field goal, which made it 7‑3 at the 1:17 mark of the first quarter.

Hawkins’ foot rose to the fore midway through the second quarter. On fourth‑and‑six from the St. Joseph 37, Hawkins lofted a towering punt that hit on the 17 and bounded to the 1 where it was downed.

On the next play, St. Joseph quarterback Dale Pratt mishandled the snap and dove on the ball in the end zone for a safety.

In addition to falling behind 9‑3 With 6:36 left in the first half, St. Joseph had to give the ball back to the Tigers on a free kick. The Vikings elected to punt, and got off a boot fielded by Matt Swank, who took off toward the right sideline. However, the whistle had blown – St. Joseph had lined up offsides.

The Vikings made the mistake of punting to Swank again. This time, he made exactly the same cut toward the right sideline, broke into the clear, and wasn’t caught until he had brought the ball 46 yards to the 10.

On third-and-five, Miller lofted a pass that would have split the uprights had the 6‑foot‑8 Hawkins not leaped to pick it out of the air in the back of the end zone for a Tiger touchdown.

The Tigers went for two, but fullback Vern Riley’s run was stopped short. Massillon settled for a 15‑3 lead at the 4:58 mark of the second quarter, and that stood up as the halftime score.

“Coach Maronto told us at halftime that it wasn’t time to celebrate, that they probably would come back and hit us with their best shot of the game,” Norris said. “He was right.”

Little Howard raced 42 yards with the second‑half kickoff, setting up a 53‑yard scoring drive. Key plays were an 11‑yard scramble by Pratt on fourth‑and‑six and a 17‑yard pass from Pratt to halfback Jerry Carlock to the 3. One play later, Howard scooted into the end zone. Beckwith’s PAT boot made it 15‑10 with 7:33 left in the third quarter.

The ”composure” of which Maronto spoke then surfaced for the Tigers.

Massillon got back the momentum with an impressive 62‑yard scoring drive after the ensuing kickoff.

The march was built on the blocking of the offensive line ‑ Lance Hostetler, Tony Lambert, John Woodlock, John Schilling, Todd Feemster, Sean Murphy and Hawkins ‑ and the powerful runs of Norris.

The 5‑10, 212‑pound fullback picked up 40 yards in five carries. Miller finished the job with a 10‑yard rollout run to the 1, followed by his own sneak for a touchdown. Hurst’s kick made it 22‑10 with 3:12 left in the third quarter.

The rest of the game was uneventful until the final minute, when St. Joseph scored on the snap over Hawkins’ head.

Norris said St. Joseph gave the Tigers a little pep talk as the teams shook hands after the game.

“They told us to get McKinley for them,” he said.

As if the Tigers needed to be reminded.


First downs rushing 8 9
First downs passing 4 2
First downs by penalty 1 2
Totals first downs 13 13
Yards gained rushing 162 179
Yards lost rushing 7 19
Net yards rushing 155 160
Net yards passing 41 44
Total yards gained 196 204
Passes attempted 6 10
Passes completed 4 4
Passes int. by 0 0
Times kicked off 4 4
Kickoff average 50.3 40.8
Kickoff return yards 134 84
Punts 3 4
Punting average 46.3 34.5
Punt return yards 19 5
Fumbles 2 0
Fumbles lost 2 0
Penalties 5 7
Yards penalized 55 40
Number of plays 44 56
Time of possession 22:17 25:43
Attendance 7,425

St. JOSEPH 3 0 7 7 17
MASSILLON 7 8 7 0 22

MAS ‑ Miller 11 run (Hurst kick) ST. JOE ‑ Beckwith 27 FG
MAS ‑ Safety, St. Joseph quarterback Pratt falls on ball in end zone
MAS ‑ Miller 5 run (run failed)
ST. JOE ‑ Howard 3 run (Beckwith kick)
MAS ‑ Miller 1 run (Hurst kick)
MAS ‑ Shaffner recovers fumble in end zone (Beckwith kick)

Jerrod Vance
Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1985: Massillon 28, Cleveland St. Joseph 14

Tigers pull switch in beating St. Joe
St. Joseph’s husky lumberjacks were wide as they were tall, but a question dogged the Cleveland boys, which Tiger has the ball?

Independent Sports Editor

MASSILLON – Enter, please, a new cliche in The World Book of Wonderful Sports Quotations.

He who lives by the game film dies by the game film.

The Massillon Tigers who were studied all week by the Cleveland St. Joseph Vikings weren’t the same Tigers who ambushed them 28‑14 Friday night before a season‑high crowd of 11,482 in Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

“The new stuff they did hurt us,” said St. Joseph linebacker Ralph Godic. “There were a lot of tricky things they did which we didn’t see on the films.”

Oh, how the films can lie.

Program Cover

“Their backs were a lot quicker in person than they appeared on film,” noted St. Joseph head coach Bill Gutbrod. “My, they have the backs.”

It was a marvelous Massillon defensive effort, really, that was at the heart of the victory that sent St. Joseph to its second defeat versus five victories.

But it was an exotic offense that set P.B.’s Big House a buzzing as the Tigers improved to 5‑2 and got back in the playoff hunt.

The two most prominent scenes not played on Gutbrod’s game films were Cornell Jackson running the football and Wes Siegenthaler playing quarterback.

Jackson, a surprise starter who had missed five games with a knee injury, brought 6 feet, 3 inches and 205 pounds of fast‑lane excitement to the Tiger offense. He ended the night with 10 carries for 51 yards and a touchdown.

The numbers weren’t overwhelming, but as Tiger head coach John Marrow noted, “Cornell Jackson is a force.”

“I can’t describe how great it felt to play again,” Jackson said, “I was as excited as I was when I was a sophomore.”

Scene No. 2 was a delicious variation of the old switcheroo.

On the eighth play of the game, after Paul Fabianich had taken all seven snaps at quarterback, with Siegenthaler playing split end, Fabianich came out of the huddle and lined up at wide out, with Siegenthaler lining up over center.

Siegenthaler kept the ball and got buried for a two‑yard loss, but the St. Joseph defense started wandering.

The Tigers pulled the switcheroo more times, with Siegenthaler running the QB keeper on seven occasions for 64 yards.

Sometimes the game films don’ lie.

“In the films, we saw that a lot of yardage was gained against St. Joseph on the option,” said Fabianich. “Wes, of course, is a very good runner. When we pulled the switch, I heard their coaches saying a couple of times, ‘Watch for the double pass.’ But the situation was designed for Wes to run the ball. I think we crossed them up.”

Sometimes the game films lie.

Sophomore Jerome Myricks, who is listed incorrectly in the program as a junior, doesn’t show up as a ball carrier in any of the Tiger game records. But the speedy Myricks hit St. Joseph for a 15‑yard gain on the Tigers’ third‑play of the game and finished with five carries.

Junior tailback Michael Harris, a star of the game films and the Tigers’ leading rusher coming in, surprisingly didn’t play ‑ he was slightly injured but was available if needed.

In another twist, junior Jerry Gruno saw his first extensive action on defense, playing most of the game at left tackle.

In short, Game No. 7 was full of surprises.

About the only thing it lacked was high suspense.

The Tigers grabbed an early lead, got a late challenge from the Vikings, then staged a clutch drive on which Mike Norris scored his third touchdown of the night.

After a scoreless first quarter, the Tigers stalled early in the second period and sent in Ken Hawkins to punt.

Hawkins got off a beautiful boomer that backed up St. Joseph deep man Andre Smith to the 15. Smith’s back peddling left him off balance and caused him to drop the ball, which squirted to the nine, where the Tigers’ Todd Perdue pounced on it.

0n second and goal from the 4, Jackson swept right and high stepped into the end zone. Norris’ PAT kick was flat but went through and the Tigers led 7‑0 with 8:34 left in the half.

St. Joseph drove 57 yards to the Tiger 30 after taking the ensuing kickoff, but on fourth and one Lance Hostetler’s tackle stopped Godic, who plays fullback in addition to linebacker, and the Tigers took over at the 29.

After an eight‑yard loss, Siegenthaler and Fabianich pulled one of their switches, with Siegenthaler keeping for a 25‑yard gain to the Viking 41.

Two plays later, it was back to the exotic, as Fabianich pitched to Norris, who pitched to Siegenthaler, who gunned the ball to a wide-open Bart Letcavits. Letcavits caught the ball and crashed to earth at the 1 for a 38‑yard gain.

Norris then hit the middle three times, going over the left side for score on third and goal from the 1.

The PAT kick failed at the 1:28 mark, and the Tigers settled for a 13-0 halftime lead.

The Tigers took the second‑half kickoff but stalled at midfield.

Then the Massillon defense, which yielded just 107 yards in the first half, buried the Vikings deep in their own territory, forcing a fourth‑and‑12 punt train the nine.

Siegenthaler fielded the punt near midfield and danced his way to another of his spectacular returns, getting the bull to the 15. But for the third time this season, a long Siegenthaler return was negated by a clipping call, which, for the record, “de‑finitely wasn’t clipping,” according to Siegenthaler.

The Tigers started from their own 41 and scored anyway, using Norris’ power running and a 13‑yard burst by Jackson to get the ball to the 4 on first and goal. Norris went over the right side and scored easily from there, and fullback Derick Newman tacked on a two‑point conversion run to make the score 21‑0 with 1:11 left in the third quarter.

Than the Vikings made it interesting, starting on their own 28 after the kickoff and rampaging 72 yards in just five plays, with split end Dale Pratt breaking wide open along the right sideline and hauling in a 30‑yard TD toss from quarterback Bob Duffy. Smith’s two‑point run made it 21‑8 with one second left in the third quarter.

Siegenthaler streaked 48 yards with the kickoff, but the Tigers ran out of downs on the Vikings 16. St. Joseph drove to midfield but had to punt, but the Tigers stalled and had to punt from deep in their own territory.

Another good boot by Hawkins forced the Vikings to start on their own 46. From there, they marched 54 yards in seven plays, with Smith racing in from 11 yards out. The PAT kick failed, but St. Joseph now had a chance, trailing 21‑14 with 2:55 left in the game.

The key to the game became St. Joseph’s ability to recover an onside kick. The squibber traveled 11 yards to Massillon’s Bob Foster, who smothered the ball at the Tiger 49.

The Tigers’ offensive line and Newman took over from there. On first down, Newman exploded over the right side for 33 yards to the 18. Six plays later, Norris swept left to score from three yards out. Norris’ kick made it 28‑14 with 30 seconds left.

In the end, the game looked even on paper, with the Tigers holding a 303‑301 edge in total yards. But the Tiger defense played extremely well while the Tigers was all but putting the game out of reach during the first three quarters.

“St. Joseph was as big an offensive team as we’ve seen, but we have great defensive quickness and tonight we played as a team,” said Perdue, a junior linebacker. “If we’d played this well last week, we could have beaten Austintown Fitch.”

“We just had to watch them up the middle,” added Tiger tackle Duane Crenshaw. “We reduced our mistakes and played good team ball tonight.”

When the defense began to give ground in the second half, Newman counterpunched an offense. The 206‑pound senior gained just three yards in three first‑half carries but surged for 69 yards in nine second‑half lugs.

St. Joseph’s wishbone backfield spread the carries among Al Forney (seven for 73), Godic (12 for 73) and Smith (10 for 57). Norris gave the Tigers 53 yards in 15 trips.

Duffy completed 10 of 24 passes for 115 yards. Fabianich connected on just one of eight tosses for four yards, but Maronto created him with doing “a good job of running the offense.”

St. Joe’s defense just didn’t
Have Siegenthaler’s number

Independent Sports Editor

MASSILLON ‑ Wes Siegenthaler is a split end, wingback, quarterback, kickoff returner, punt returner and cornerback.

Maybe it was only fitting that a guy who wears so many hats wore more than one number Friday night in the Massillon Tigers’ 28‑14 high school football victory over Cleveland St. Joseph.

Siegenthaler wore No. 87 in warm-ups and No. 20 during Friday’s first half. At the start of the second half, No. 1 was on his back.

Actually, it wasn’t fitting. No. 20, which used to belong to Robert Cooley – he transferred to Tuslaw ‑ is one size smaller than Siegenthaler’s regular jersey No. 1.

“He forgot his jersey, that’s all,” said Tiger head coach John Maronto.

But that’s not all there was to it in the mind of Bill Gutbrod, the St. Joseph head coach. The start of the second half was delayed several minutes while Siegenthaler’s jersey change was debated.

Ohio high school rules prohibit such a jersey switch, unless there are extenuating circumstances.

The second half began only after Siegenthaler’s ripped No. 20 was presented to Gutbrod on the St. Joseph sideline.

“The jersey had a little tear in it – I think they tore it. It was about that big,” said Gutbrod, holding his thumb and index finger two inches apart.

Gutbrod, who at age 60 and with 36 years under his belt at St. Joseph is one of the nation’s veteran high school coaches, wasn’t happy about the incident but cut the jersey talk short.

“It had nothing to do with the game,” he said. “They did a good job. Give them credit.”

Duane Crenshaw