Tag: <span>Lyron Wilson</span>

Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

2013: Massillon 34, Canton McKinley 7

Blocked kick changes momentum
Massillon’s Dailey returns it for huge TD vs. McKinley

Independent sports editor

CANTON McKinley was poised to get the momentum during Saturday’s 124th meeting against Massillon at Fawcett Stadium.

The Bulldogs, despite a one-touchdown deficit, were lining up for a half-ending field goal. They also were in line to get the opening kickoff of the second half as well, which could have completely altered the look of the game.

In one of the most bizarre plays in the series’ history, Massillon took the momentum back from McKinley when Alex Dailey returned a blocked field goal 45 yards for a touchdown. And the Tigers would never let it go in rolling to a 34-7 win.

“That’s something we work on, our special teams,” Massillon head coach Jason Hall said. “Anybody who comes to our practices, the first 30 minutes of the day is just special teams. From blocking to scooping and all that, it’s all built. Not quite rolling around, ball bouncing around like that, but we work it.”

The Tigers were looking at, at best, a 7-0 halftime lead before the field-goal try on a fourth-and 2 from their 20. Instead, Bailey’s return gave Massillon a 14-0 advantage, a multiscore margin it maintained the rest of the way.

“It’s a great feeling, but I’ve got to owe it all to Marcus Whitfield for making the block and Malik Dudley for keeping the play alive,” Dailey said. “He could’ve picked it up, and he probably would’ve been tackled. Instead, he laid a block for another teammate to get it, and their guys just tried to pick it up. In the end, I just ended up with it.”

The sequence all started with the block. With the Bulldogs lining up for the 37-yard field goal try, Whitfield swooped in and got the kick almost before it got airborne.

“It was just a presnap thing,” Whitfield said. “This whole game, I was just wanting to go (all out). That was just one of those things, just a big effort and heart play.”

Things began to get crazy as the ball rolled toward midfield. For a moment, it seemed as if both teams froze, thinking it was a dead ball as would be the case on a blocked point-after touchdown try.

Then, both teams began the wild chase to get the loose pigskin. Massillon’s players were trying to pick the ball up to score. McKinley’s players, instead of just falling on it to lull the half, also seemed to be trying to make a play on the ball.

Dudley and Nathaniel Devers – like Dailey and Whitfield, Tiger captains – both picked up key blocks to keep Bulldog players from getting the ball. Dailey finally got his hands on it, avoided touching his knee to the ground before gaining total balance and racing to the end zone.

“It just uplifted everybody’s spirits,” Devers said. “It was just a (heck) of a play.”

The sequence had a negative impact on the Bulldogs. They would get no points there, then went three-and-out coming out of halftime.

“From an emotional standpoint, it was bigger than the points,” McKinley head coach Todd Filtz said. “That was a devastating blow that we had to recover from.”

And one McKinley never could recover from.


Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2013: Massillon 23, Akron St. Vincent St. Mary 28

Turnovers costly as Tigers forced to regroup with playoff lives on the line against McKinley

Independent sports editor

MASSILLON Massillon once again found itself in a deficit against an elite football team. And once again, the Tigers found themselves fighting in the fourth quarter with an opportunity to come all the way back.

And once again, that early hole proved to be too much as the Tigers suffered a 28-23 setback to the top-ranked Division III team in the state, St. Vincent-St. Mary, on Friday night at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

The Tigers found themselves in a 21-3 first-half hole thanks to four turnovers, three of which led to touchdowns for the reigning Division III state champion Irish.

Still, Massillon pulled to within 28-23 with 6:03 remaining on a Marcus Whitfield touchdown catch. But they never got a final opportunity to go for a winning drive as the the Irish chewed up the remainder of the clock.

“As a team, we just can’t do that,” a dejected Massillon coach Jason Hall said. “We gave up a fumble for a touchdown. We had two muffed punts. It’s just mental mistakes in the first half. … We couldn’t score from the 1. We’ve got to play better next week.”

The Tigers have no choice in that matter, whether it was archrival McKinley or somebody else next week. At 7-2, they likely need to beat the Bulldogs – who are 9-0 – on Saturday at Fawcett Stadium in order to qualify for the playoffs in Division II Region 2.

“They might need to dwell on it for about 24 hours,” Hall said. “We get an extra day. It’s definitely do-or-die. As a team, coaches and players, we have to do a better job. We can’t wait until the middle of the third quarter. We can’t kill ourselves with turnovers.”

In both losses, Massillon put itself behind the eight-ball. In Week 7, the Tigers battled back from a double-digit deficit at Austintown Fitch to close to within three points late in the fourth.

Both times, the Tigers couldnt’ finish the deal. The clock ran out at Fitch, while the Irish marched down the field during the last six-plus minutes.

Newman Williams picked up a big eight yards on third-and-3 from the Tigers 34. Then, with just less than two minutes left, he gained seven yards on fourth-and-2 to close things out.

“I knew in my mind we had to get that,” said Williams, who scored a pair of touchdowns and gained 56 yards on 10 carries. “I was going to try my hardest to do whatever I could to get that.”

The very first play set the tone for the Tigers, as Nathan Bischoff intercepted a deep pass for the Irish. That one wouldn’t hurt Massillon, as St. Vincent-St. Mary missed a 32-yard field goal.

But when the Tigers fumbled on their next possession, the Irish cashed in. Three plays and 25 yards later, Williams scored from 6 yards out for a 7-0 St. Vincent-St. Mary lead.

A muffed punt by Massillon set up Williams’ second scoring run, a 2-yarder with 7:49 left in the half to give the Irish a 14-3 lead. That lead grew to 21-3 when Dante Booker picked up a fumble and returned it 71 yards for a touchdown with 4:20 remaining.

“Defensively, we’ve created a ton of turnovers,” St. Vincent-St. Mary coach Dan Boarman said. “That’s really helped us out.”

Booker’s fumble return took the momentum away from Massillon after the Tigers got an interception by Reggie Rogers three plays before. Rogers, though, helped the Tigers take a 21-10 deficit at halftime when he pulled in a 19-yard pass with 15 seconds left in the back of the end zone.

After the Irish took a 28-10 lead out of the intermission with an eight-play, 71-yard scoring drive, Massillon began to wrest control of the momentum. Lyron Wilson’s 16-yard run with 2:02 left in the third pulled the Tigers to within 28-17.

Wilson finished with 105 yards on 21 carries.

The Tigers, who were stopped on fourth-and-goal from the Irish 3 with 5:29 remaining in the third quarter, outgained the Irish 304-239.

“The big negatives out-weighed a lot of positives,” Hall said. “We just have to look at that. It’s going to click for us, and hopefully it translates into a win next week.”


Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2013: Massillon 37, Steubenville 21

Tigers handle adversity to escape Death Valley

Independent sports editor

STEUBENVILLE Massillon had plenty of reason to feel like things weren’t going to go its way in Friday’s visit to Steubenville’s Harding Stadium.

The Tigers battled turnovers. They battled a rugged Big Red team. They fought the flags.

Yet, when push came to shove, Massillon shoved the hardest. And that’s why the Tigers picked up their first win at Steubenville since 1977 – with a 29-year hiatus in there – with a 37-21 win over Big Red to improve to 5-0 on the season.

“It’s crazy; it’s a beautiful thing,” Massillon running back Lyron Wilson said. “We’re the first team to beat them in how long? … It was a great game for us.”

And that great game for the Tigers was in large part because of Wilson’s running. The senior rushed for 234 yards on 24 carries, and scored three times, the last with 3:54 remaining after a crazy a sequence.

“We handled adversity,” said Wilson, who also credited fellow running back J.D. Crabtree, who ran for 55 yards and a score on eight carries. “We scored down there three times, and they called all but one of the touchdowns back. We just fought and kept running; the line blocked their tail off. I just ran for everything.”

That third score came after the Tigers had two other scores or near scores called back by penalty. After the second, it sent head coach Jason Hall into near-hysterics on the sideline, as he rushed at the officials.

Hall’s frustration arose from a night where the Tigers had 14 penalties for 92 yards. Five of those came on that final scoring drive.

“I just told our kids to keep playing,” Hall said. “We had to handle some adversity. They just kept playing. I may have lost my cool a little bit.”

The Tigers found themselves in a dogfight until the fourth quarter because of those flags, which self-destructed several drives. They also turned the ball over three times. Massillon only led 16-14 at halftime, and just 23-21 entering the fourth quarter.

Steubenville also helped, with three turnovers of its own. Both teams also gave the other team good field position with bad punt snaps.

Massillon, which had first-half leads of 2-0, 9-0 and 16-7 before a late first-half score by Steubenville, took control of the game on the first play of the fourth quarter. Facing fourth-and 1 from the Big Red 4, freshman Danny Clark play-faked and then spun around to the left and hit Beau Huffman for a four-yard touchdown and a 30-21 lead.

The Tigers scored on three of its four meaningful second-half possessions, prior to three kneeldowns at the end of the game. Crabtree had a 5-yard scoring run on the first drive of the second half for a 23-14 lead, a five-play, 45-yard march that was all runs by the Tiger running back.

“That’s just how we do it,” Wilson said. “That’s how we do it. That’s exactly how we do it.”

Steubenville, which scored on a 1-yard Robert Hayden run and a 10-yard Mandela Lawrence Burke to Kair McClurg pass in the first half, scored its final touchdown on a 10-yard Dimitri Collaros-to-Lucas Herrington pass to make it 23-21 with just over four minutes remaining in the third quarter.


Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2013: Massillon 35, Mentor Lake Catholic 6

Runaway Tigers
All phases clicking in blowout victory

Independent sports editor

MASSILLON Massillon scored on the ground. It scored through the air. And it scored on defense.

And when it was all said and done Friday night at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium, the Tigers had scored a 35-6 knockout of visiting Lake Catholic to improve to 4-0 for the first time since 2009.

“I think both our offense and defense came out with a great focus tonight, especially after our defense struggled for a few series last week,” said Tiger cornerback Reed Fichter, whose second-quarter interception return for a touchdown helped break the game open. “We came out and made a statement tonight. We’ve got momentum going into next week. We’ve just got to keep our heads on straight and keep getting better each week.”

That’s especially true next Friday night, when Massillon heads to Steubenville, a place that has been a house of horrors. The Tigers are 0-2 since the series was renewed in 2009. But on this Friday night, Massillon made sure to keep its eyes on task at hand against Lake Catholic.

“We came out of Warren (last week) and still feel like we haven’t put together a full four quarter game: special teams, offense and defense all working off each other,” Tiger lineman Nathaniel Devers said. “So we wanted to practice and make sure we could come out and execute. … We’re not looking past anybody. This was a tough team.”

Massillon’s offense wasn’t quite the picture of four-quarter efficiency against the Cougars, as it had been the week before at Warren Harding. Still, the Tigers were good enough, showing at times the diversity of run and pass that can make them a handful for opposing defenses.

On this night, Lake Catholic was forced to choose to deal with the two-headed rushing monster than is Lyron Wilson and J.D. Crabtree. Or, it could try to take away the deep passing game from quarterback Danny Clark.

Turns out, the Cougars had enough problems with both to make it a long night. Massillon finished with 316 total yards, with 172 coming on the ground and another 144 coming through the air.

Most of that damage was done in the first half, which ended with the Tigers in front 35-0.

Massillon went into the locker room with 228 total yards, 117 of those in the air and anotherin the air.

“They were a blitzing team and we were kind of just going with the flow of the game,” Massillon coach Jason Hall said. “We ran at it, and had success running at it. I thought we threw a couple of good balls.”

The Tigers scored on their second and third possessions to take the lead for good at 13-0. The first score came on a 3-yard run by Crabtree, while Clark hit Beau Huffman for a 17-yard scoring strike for the second.

Wilson also got into the scoring act, rushing for a 15-yard touchdown late in the first half. He finished with 97 yards on 14 carries, while Crabtree rushed for 78 on 13 attempts.

The defense took over the scoring from there. Fichter picked off a pass and return it 62 yards for a touchdown and a 20-0 second-quarter lead.

Two Cougar possessions later, Saive Isles – who had earlier set up a score with an interception – hauled in an overthrown pass and returned it 34 yards for a touchdown. Fichter hit Malik Dudley for a two-point conversion and a 28-0 lead.

“As a whole team, we feed off each other,” Huffman said. “No matter, whether it’s defense feeding off the offense or offense feeding off the defense. Tonight, it was the offense feeding off the defense. That was just huge.”

When the Massillon defense wasn’t scoring points, it was doing its best to keep Lake Catholic from so much as getting a first downs. In fact, the Cougars didn’t cross the 50 through three quarters, with just three first downs and 80 total yards in the first 36 minutes of the game.

They finished with 126 total yards, 106 of those on the ground.

The first time Lake Catholic snapped on the Tiger side of midfield came with 10:39 remaining after Massillon botched a punt snap and the Cougars took over 1 yard from the goal line. On the next play, Justin Sanders scored to break up the shutout.

By that time, though, it was 35-6 and Massillon could start thinking about being 4-0 … and Steubenville.


Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2013: Massillon 35, Warren Harding 14

Quick strike gives Massillon momentum to down Harding

Independent sports editor

WARREN Massillon had seen a two-touchdown lead completely disappear in the second quarter of its first road game of the season on Friday night at Warren Harding.

But instead of allowing the momentum to continue to move away from them, the Tigers took all of one play to swing it back in their favor. Buoyed by the late first-half score, the Tigers put their foot on the accelerator coming out of the half to run away from Warren 35-14 at Mollenkopf Stadium.

The Tigers, who were tied with the Raiders 14-14 with 3:41 remaining in the half, scored just 10 seconds after Warren had tied the game on a 32-yard Danny Clark to Reggie Rogers touchdown pass. They then scored on their first two second-half possessions to pull away to improve to 3-0 on the season.

“I knew right away that I wanted to come right back after they had a good little drive there and tied it up,” Massillon coach Jason Hall said. “We got that good return (by Marcus Whitfield). It was definitely a chance to come out and take the home-run shot to Reggie. … It was a good play.”

Clark, making his second start of his career, finished the game 8-of-13 for 145 yards with the one score. He didn’t attempt a pass in the fourth quarter after the Tigers took the 21-point lead.

After the touchdown pass, Warren — which was playing as the “Panthers” on this night in honor of the former Warren Harding teams — only threatened one other time, reaching the Massillon 1 midway through the fourth quarter. But by that point, the game was all but decided.

Warren, now 1-2, was also hurt by a pair of second-half turnovers, including a Mike Smith interception at the Warren 43 that turned into the Tigers’ final touchdown, a 7-yard run by J.D.

Crabtree with 5:21 remaining in the third. Lyron Wilson also had a 16-yard scoring run in the quarter.

“We got that 14-0 lead in the beginning, and they came back,” said Crabtree, who scored three times on the night. “We made a few mistakes. We came in at halftime and we really made some adjustments and came out and we were ready.”

Massillon came out of the chute determined to take command of the line of scrimmage. And that’s just what the Tigers did on their first drive, marching 62 yards in eight plays to take a 7-0 lead when Crabtree powered in from a yard out with 8:56 left in the first quarter.

The third Massillon drive ended the exact same way, with Crabtree going in from a yard out to close out a four-play, 30-yard possession. The second Andrew David point-after kick gave the Tigers a 14-0 lead with 2:38 remaining in the half.

“They (the coaches) were really rough on them the whole week,” Crabtree said of the Massillon line, which helped the Tigers rush for 147 yards on 29 carries. “They were in full pads. I have all the respect in the world for them. We couldn’t make plays without them.”

Keemari Murry got loose to get Warren back into it, scampering for a 34-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter. Murry, a sophomore tailback, had 82 second-quarter rushing yards and 107 yards on the ground in the first half.

Murry finished the game with 193 yards on 34 carries with the one score.

“You have to take your hat off to them,” Hall said. “They ground and pound it a little bit in there.”

Warren tied the game up at 14-14 by showing just how valuable the return of Lamar Carmichael at quarterback is to the offense. Carmichael, hampered by a foot injury the first two games, eluded the Tiger pass rush and found Nate Walls for a 16-yard touchdown pass on fourth-and-6 with 3:41 remaining in the half.

That led to Whitfield’s big kick return to the Warren 32, which led to the touchdown pass that gave Massillon the lead for good.


Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2013: Massillon 23, Canton Glenoak 20

Triple OT
Massillon outlasts GlenOak for second victory

“Take your hat off to GlenOak; they had a great defensive game plan. They just brought the house at us all night.” MASSILLON COACH JASON HALL

Independent sports editor,

MASSILLON Massillon’s season opener against Perry last week had its share of miscues, penalties and turnovers. But the Tigers were able to overcome those to still run away with the win.

The second time Massillon took the field this season was filled with more of the same as it welcomed nemesis GlenOak to Paul Brown Tiger Stadium on Thursday night. And once again, the Tigers were able to overcome all of that to get the win.

This time, though, it was no rout. Instead, it was a nail-biting, breath-taking rally that gave Massillon a 23-20 triple-overtime win over the Golden Eagles.

“I happy with it, but at the same time, I’m really disappointed with the way we played,” Massillon coach Jason Hall said after his team moved to 2-0 thanks to a 20-yard Andrew David field goal in the third overtime, followed by a fourth-down stop from his team’s own 1. “Take your hat off to GlenOak; they had a great defensive game plan. They just brought the house at us all night. We didn’t do a great job. We have to get back to fundamentals.”

On a night when history was being made with Danny Clark becoming the first freshman to ever start at quarterback for Massillon, a different kind of history was seemed possible as well. Outside of McKinley, no other Stork County team ever had beaten the Tigers in three consecutive meetings, but such an opportunity was there for GlenOak after taking the 2011 and 2012 contests.

It was nearly there, but GlenOak – which led 10-6 in the fourth quarter, as well as 20-13 in the second OT – couldn’t convert a fourth-and-goal from the Tiger 1 in the third overtime. Mike Smith came up to stop Jason Simon for a loss to preserve the win. The stop capped a night in which Massillon, despite a 288-152 edge in yards and an 18-8 first-down edge, shot itself in the foot over and over again. The Tigers turned the ball over five times, missed an extra point and three field goals, allowed GlenOak to pick up six recorded sacks in the game and missed onmultiple opportunities in Golden Eagles territory in the first half.

“We just kept battling and battling,” Hall said. “We didn’t play our best game.” as for Clark, there were times where he looked like exactly what he was, which is a freshman. Yet he gave Massillon a 13-10 fourth-quarter lead when he hit Marcus Whitfield on a 10-yard touchdown strike with 4:46 remaining, then helped send the game into a third OT with a 21 yard TD pass to Reggie Rogers.

Clark finished the game 14 of 24 for 170 yards with three touchdowns, two of which went to Rogers. The two also hooked up for an 18-yard score with 9:31 remaining in the first quarter to give Massillon a 6-0 lead.

“Danny’s a tough kid,” Hall said. “He’s going to learn from this. We’re going to learn from this.” GlenOak would rally twice. Simon’s 2-yard touchdown with 3:44 left in the first half gave the Eagles a 7-6 lead. They would then march down for a game-tying 31-yard field goal with 17 seconds left in regulation to send it to overtime tied at 13-13.

Both teams missed field goals in the first overtime session. Massillon’s was pushed wide left, while GlenOak’s was blocked.