Tag: <span>Dyson Berry</span>

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2017: Massillon 35, Akron Firestone 6

Tigers bounce back, flatten Firestone

Chris Easterling – The Independent
Oct 13, 2017 10:19 PM

MASSILLON Massillon’s first possession Friday night against visiting Firestone went for a three-and-out. It was the first time the Tigers failed to score on their opening possession.

Problem for the Falcons was that Massillon had plenty of other possessions after that one in which it didn’t go three-and-out. In fact, more often then now, they went for touchdowns, as the Tigers bounced back with a 35-6 win over Firestone at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

Game action vs. Akron Firestone

“I think we were focused and dialed in, which is what we needed to do,” Massillon coach Nate Moore said after his team bounced back from a Week 7 loss to Canisius (N.Y.) to improve to 6-2. “I don’t know how much better we got; we definitely played better. We need to get the film evaluated and evaluate this game just like we did the previous games and continue to get better every week.

Massillon also shook off any first-possession disappointment to make sure it established control of the game before the teams went to the locker room for halftime. The Tigers scored on four consecutive drives after its first one to open up a 28-0 lead going into the break.

It would take Massillon until its second possession of the second half to get on the board as well. That’s when Aidan Longwell hooked up with Aydrik Ford for a 17-yard touchdown to make it 35-0 with 4:31 remaining in the third quarter.

That was one of three touchdown passes for Longwell. He also hit Jayden Ballard and Austin Kutscher for touchdowns in the first half.

Game action vs. Akron Firestone

“We wanted to come out and make an effort to be more balanced,” said Moore, whose team racked up 360 total yards in the game. “Certainly not perfect, but I thought we did well”

While the Massillon offense generated the points, the Tiger defense was able to do something it had struggled to do at times, even during the five-game win streak. It was consistently able to get off the field quickly.

Two passes to Darshun Williams – a 13-yarder on the Falcons’ first drive and a 39-yarder on their sixth – accounted for the only two times in the first half in which Firestone managed to get across the 50. The first time, which reached the Tiger 43, ended in a punt from the Massillon 46.

The second one put the Falcons on the Massillon 19. The next four plays netted minus-5 yards before Anthony Ballard intercepted a pass in the end zone on fourth down with :38 remaining in the first half.

Game action vs. Akron Firestone

That was one of two first-half interceptions for the Tigers. Max Turner – who started due to a handful of players being suspended for the first quarter due to a violation of team rules – came up with a one-handed pick to squelch Firestone’s second drive.

Remove Williams’ two big plays and Firestone’s offense netted just 38 yards on 25 first-half plays. Williams would put the Falcons on the board with a 34-yard touchdown catch from Joe Namsick with 8:49 remaining in the game.

The Falcons would finish with 232 yards on 54 plays. Of those, 83 came on the lone scoring drive of the game.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt we played better,” Moore said. “Did we play to our potential? No. We need to continue to evaluate and improve. We’ll do that again this weekend.”

Game action vs. Akron Firestone

That defensive performance was counted by a workmanlike effort by Massillon’s offense. One fact which was obvious from the very first possession was the Tigers’ desire to work both the run and pass.

Of the four first-half touchdown, two were passes by Longwell and two were runs. Ballard and Kutscher each caught a score in the first quarter, while Tyree Broyles and Jamir Thomas each ran for a score in the second quarter.

At halftime, Massillon had run the ball 18 times for 111 yards, while Longwell was 11-of-14 for 136 yards passing. The Tigers would finish with 163 rushing yards on 35 attempts, while Longwell was 15-of-19 passing for 197 yards.


Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2017: Massillon 31, Warren Harding 21

Massillon runs past Warren Harding for second win

Chris Easterling – The Independent
Sep 08, 2017 10:11 PM

WARREN Massillon and Warren Harding have engaged in more than their share of shootouts over the last two or three seasons. While the faces may have changed, that trend didn’t change on Friday night as they renewed acquaintances at Mollenkopf Stadium.

There were no Austin Jasinskis or Lynn Bowdens on the field. However, players such as Jamir Thomas and Kayron Adams were, both of whom had a hand in what ultimately became a 31-21 Massillon win on “Throwback Night” in Warren.

“First off, (Warren’s) a good football team with some good running backs,” said Massillon coach Nate Moore, whose team is 2-1 heading into Week 4’s home game with Ursuline. “We had a hard time tackling those guys, plain and simple. You just swing harder. You just swing hard and keep playing hard.”

The biggest hammer the Tigers were able to swing was Thomas, who rushed for 148 yards and a score – which gave Massillon a 14-7 first-quarter lead – on 27 carries. He helped Massillon rush for 209 yards on 45 carries as a team, with Zion Phifer adding 61 yards on 14 carries.

Those rushing numbers helped the Tigers offset a Warren offense which gained 276 yards of its own on the ground in the game.

Of those, 202 yards and all three touchdowns came from Kayron Adams. However, 66 yards came on the Raiders’ lone second-half score, a third-quarter touchdown that cut it to 28-21 with 3:50 remaining in the quarter.

“We were vastly improved from Week 1,” said Warren coach Steve Arnold, whose team – which was paying tribute to the old Warren G. Harding Panther teams – falls to 0-2. “We threw the ball better. We’re going to be able to run the ball all year; I don’t think that’s going to be an issue.”

For Massillon, it was a case of never having to play from behind. That meant from the opening seconds of the game.

Game action vs. Warren Harding

Anthony Ballard drew up the perfect start to the game for Massillon. Ballard took the opening kickoff at his own 16, found a crease in the blocking and raced virtually untouched to the end zone for a touchdown just 12 seconds into the game.

“We wanted to kick the ball down the numbers and we kicked the ball down the middle,” Arnold said. “That’s not what we practiced all week. So, consequently, you kick it down the middle on a shift, we have an overload on one side.”

Game action vs. Warren Harding

Almost like a starter’s gun at a track meet, Ballard’s kickoff signaled the start of an early shootout between the two long-time rivals. Four consecutive combined possessions between the teams would result in four combined touchdowns, the last of which was a 15-yard pass from Aidan Longwell to Austin Kutscher with 7:46 remaining in the first half to give Massillon a 21-14 lead.

The two would also hook up for a 37-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter which made it 28-14 Tigers. Longwell finished 8-of-11 for 120 yards, while Kutscher had four catches for 82 yards.

Adams had both first-half touchdowns for Warren: a 7-yard run to tie it at 7-7 and a 15-yard run to even things up at 14-14. The last came with 8:52 remaining in the half.

Adams added a 66-yard touchdown run one play after the second Longwell-to-Kutscher touchdown pass, cutting the Massillon lead to 28-21. Warren would get inside the Tiger 20 only once more after that, while Massillon would tack on a 21-yard Klay Moll field goal with 6:03 remaining.

Game action vs. Warren Harding

Massillon had a hand in both Raider first-half scoring drives thanks to what has been an early-season issue: penalties. The Tigers had back-to-back flags on the first – a late hit and a pass interference – to move the ball from their own 33 to the 9.

The second drive was aided by a iffy pass-interference call in the end zone on a 50-50 ball on fourth-and-12 from the Massillon 30. The next play, Adams scored his second touchdown of the night.

The Tigers were flagged eight times for 83 yards in the game. That includes six flags for 69 yards in the first half.

Game action vs. Warren Harding

“We have to get back to the drawing board and watch the film and get things corrected,” said Moore, whose team has been flagged 39 times in three games. “It’s a continuous process of getting better every week. That’s just part of it.”

One other early-season trend helped Massillon come up with the game’s first defensive stop. Dyson Berry intercepted a pass in the end zone on third-and-31 for Warren with 3:28 remaining in the half. It was the third pick in as many games for Berry.


Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2017: Massillon 24, Canton Glenoak 10

Massillon Keeps Ball, Win Away From GlenOak

Chris Easterling – The Independent
Sep 01, 2017 10:45 PM

Massillon played a game of keep-away on Friday night at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

The Tigers spent much of the game keeping the ball away from GlenOak. That led directly to Massillon keeping the win away from the Golden Eagles as well, as it emerged with a 24-10 victory to even its record at 1-1.

Aided by a 33-carry, 107-yard effort from Jamir Thomas, Massillon was able to run 80 plays in the game to just 43 for GlenOak, which is 0-2 for the first time since 1998. The Tigers finished with 356 total yards, while the Golden Eagles’ 188.

“There’s no doubt about it he was a part of it,” Massillon coach Nate Moore said of Thomas, who had missed the season-opening loss to Mentor due to disciplinary reasons. “But great performance by our offense and a great performance by our defense, especially in the first half. I’m proud of those guys.”

The tone of the game was set in the first half. Massillon’s first two drives took 19 and 21 plays, respectively.

Even more importantly, they both resulted in points. Klay Moll ended the first one with a 23-yard field goal for a 3-0 lead; Thomas ended the second one with a 1-yard plunge to give the Tigers a 10-3 lead.

By halftime, Massillon had already run 45 plays for 166 yards to just 16 plays for GlenOak for 61 yards. Of those, nine plays and 30 yards came on the Golden Eagles’ first drive, which ended in a Dean Sarris 20-yard field goal to tie the game at 3-3.

Game Action vs. Canton Glenoak

“The first half, obviously, we just couldn’t get off the field defensively,” GlenOak coach Scott Garcia said. “They ran the ball right down our throats. I think it was 45 plays for them in the first half to 16 for us. You’re not going to win games like that.”

The running game certainly was the backbone of the Tiger win. Massillon ran for 157 net yards on 55 carries – including 28 yards on 12 carries on a 15-play, game-sealing fourth-quarter scoring drive that ended on an Aidan Longwell 1-yard run with 2:33 remaining.

Game Action vs. Canton Glenoak

However, two pass plays may have been the ultimate difference. The first was a 33-yard Longwell-to-Austin Kutscher touchdown pass immediately after a Dyson Berry interception in the third quarter to put the Tigers in front 17-3.

The second, maybe bigger, one came on the final scoring drive. Facing a second-and-21 from the GlenOak 38, Longwell hit Dean Clark on a wheel route for 36 yards to the Eagle 2.

Three plays later, Longwell powered in from the 1 for a 24-10 Tiger lead. GlenOak would go four-and-out on its next possession to squelch any further threat.

“It was a great throw,” Moore said of the Longwell-to-Clark pass. “It was sort of a back-shoulder throw. Great call by our offensive coaching staff. The kids executed, and that’s what it takes to win big games.”

Longwell, in his second start, was 15-of-25 for 209 yards with the one touchdown pass.

Meanwhile, GlenOak quarterback Tate Rhoads was never able to get the one part of his game that had Tiger defensive coaches most concerned in the week leading to the game. That would be his rushing ability.

Game Action vs. Canton Glenoak

Rhoads, who had 78 yards on six first-half carries before leaving with a broken collarbone in the teams’ 2016 meeting, was held to just six rushing yards on four carries.

“He missed a couple of reads that he should’ve given the ball,” Garcia said. “He just didn’t do it. He didn’t play very well and he knows it, and we’re going to move on.”

Rhoads was 16-of-24 for 145 yards with a 6-yard touchdown pass to Chris Armstead with 8:01 remaining to cut Massillon’s lead to 17-10. He also had the interception, which Berry made on a diving catch after the ball deflected off of the receiver.
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