Tag: <span>Paul Salvino</span>

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
Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

1995: Massillon 21, Austintown Fitch 14

Tigers overcome injuries, Fitch

Independent Sports Editor

Call it a character builder.

The Massillon Tigers, severely handicapped by the loss to injury of their leading rusher and leading receiver, dug deep and came out with a 21-14 victory over an inspired Austintown Fitch crew in front of 10,922 at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium, Friday.

Massillon (4‑1 ) had to do it without Vinny Turner, who suffered a pulled hamstring in the final seconds of the first half that prevented him from going 78-yards for a touchdown, and Vaughn Mohler, who may be done for the season with a torn lateral cruciate ligament.

Program Cover

Clinging to a 14‑7 lead, Massillon began the second half by marching 67 yards in 15 plays. The sustained drive ate 7:17 off the game clock and was capped by George Whitfield’s one‑yard quarterback sneak into the end zone. Josh Hose added the conversion kick and the Tigers had the game under control at 21‑7.

Whitfield ran the football six times on the drive for 32 yards and hit Dustin Limbach for seven yards and a first down.

Raphel Bradley (6‑2, 215­-pounds) started the second half in Turner’s place and came up big for the Tigers. The junior tailback rushed six time for 22 yards on the march and icked up a pair of first downs.

”That was a critical drive there,” Rose agreed. “We had to go with Raphel and he did a good job for us. He carried it well for us and blocked well.

”That drive took eight mi­nutes off the clock. You do that and you’re going to be hard to beat.”

Fitch head coach Jack Kenney admitted he was feeling good about his teams chances after learning Turner was through for the night.

“We said we’re going to come out and we’re going to stuff them right now and we didn’t and they go in and score,” Ken­ney said. “That was a defining moment in this ball game.

“When Turner Went down I was prepared for them to go into more of a passing game. But they just come up with somebody else. They have a lot of great athletes around here.”

Fitch came right back after Massillon went up by 14 and moved the ball from its 25 to the Tiger 23, where the Falcons had first‑and‑10. But Jared Stefanko stuffed quarterback Jeff Lawrence on an option keeper for a two‑yard loss, and two plays la­ter Henry McElroy batted down a pass in the end zone to quell the visitors’ threat.

The gang from Austintown wasn’t through, though. After a pass interference call on Massillon, Lawrence hit David Yargo between the numbers at the Tiger 30. The ball bounced off Yargo’s pads and was grabbed in midair by Fitch’s Chayne Mitchell who sprinted into the end zone for an “immaculate reception” touchdown that covered 53 yards.

Chris Calcagni tacked on the PAT and it was a 21‑14 game with just under six minutes to play.

After the ensuing kickoff, the Tiger’s went three‑and‑out and punted. Fitch took over at its 37 with 3:24 to play. The Falcons managed a pair of first downs and penetrated to the Massillon 40. On first down at that point, Eric Lightfoot sacked Lawr­ence for a six‑yard loss. Two plays later, with Paul Salvino pressuring Lawrence, Stefanko intercepted the Fitch quarter­back at the 30‑yard line to secure the victory.

“Jared had a great drop and read the quarterback real well,” Rose said. “That was a great play at a very important time.”

Whitfield had a fine all ­around game for the Tigers, rushing for 59 yards in 15 totes. He hit on 7‑of‑15 passes for another 59 yards and 1 touchdown. But it was the senior’s execution of the option that left Rose smiling.

“That’s going to help us down the road.” Rose said. George was hitting option alley and took it right in there. He doesn’t need to pitch it a lot be­cause they’re going to try to take away the pitch man and make him run it. He is a big, strong back and he call take it up in there. He is a strong runner and he just needs to assert himself out there.”

Kenney, too, was impressed with Whitfield’s contributions.

“He gives Massillon a very, very balanced, nice attack,” Kenney said. ”That makes it difficult because we couldn’t gang up on anything.

“Their coaches were right in tune. Whatever we’d give, they’d take. They’re well prepared, as you’d expect from a class outfit like this. It was their balanced attack that kept us off guard.”

Massillon opened the scoring by moving the ball 42 yards in nine plays after Fitch went three-and –out on its first possession.

Turner, who finished with 123 yards on 10 carries, had the big play with a 14‑yard burst off right guard that took the ball to the 11. Two plays later, Whitfield rolled left and found tight end Chris Martin for a nine yard TD at the 6:00 mark of the first period.

Fitch counterpunched with a textbook, 14-play, 77-yard drive, that ate up nearly seven minutes. Chris Hunter scored standing up from a yard away with just over a minute gone in the second period. Calcagni’s kick made it a 7-7 contest.

After an exchange of punts, Massillon moved from its 39 to the Fitch 22 where it faced second‑and‑seven. Whitfield dropped back to pass and I threw what appeared to be a sure interception to Lawrence. But the pass went through the Falcon DB’s hands and was caught by Devin Williams at the three yard line.

On the next snap, Turner went in over right guard and tackle. Hose’s conversion boot made it 14-7 with 3:00 to go in the half.

“I think that was the real heartbreaker,” lamented Ken­ney. “If we go in at 7-7, we’d certainly have had a lot more confidence for the second half.”

Actually, Fitch dodged another bullet a couple of mi­nutes later when Turner pulled up lame on what looked to be a sure TD jaunt.

”Oh, yeah, he’s gone for a touchdown,” Rose said. ”We have it walled off and Vinny’s going down the sidelines for an 80‑yard run.

“But Raphel is going to do a good job for us. He is a strong back with great speed. he will break a tackle, get into the secondary and he will be gone.”

But Rose wasn’t all smiles afterward. In addition to the injuries to Turner and Mohler, he was upset with his team’s inability to keep the yellow flags in the officials’ pockets.

“We had six penalties tonight for 73 yards and they played error free ball evidently,” Rose said. “ We’re got to learn to not make those mistakes. We were in a mode where we could’ve got another touchdown drive going.

First downs rushing 10 8
First downs passing 5 4
First downs penalty 0 3
Total first downs 15 15
Net yards rushing 245 109
Net yards passing 59 108
Total yards gained 304 217
Passes attempted 15 14
Passes completed 7 5
Passes int. 1 1
Times kicked off 4 3
Kickoff average 52.0 52.7
Kickoff return yards 68 76
Punts 3 2
Punting average 37.7 25.5
Punt return yards 0 0
Fumbles 0 1
Fumbles lost 0 1
Penalties 6 0
Yards penalized 73 0
Number of plays 53 51
Time of possession 26:01 21:59
Attendance 10,922

FITCH 0 7 0 7 14
MASSILLON 7 7 7 0 21


First Quarter
M ‑ Martin 9 pass from Whitfield (Hose kick)

Second Quarter
F ‑ Hunter 1 run (Calcagni kick)
M ‑ Turner 3 run (Hose kick)

Third Quarter
M ‑ Whitfield 1 run (Hose kick)

Fourth Quarter
F ‑ Mitcliell 53 pass from Lawrence (Calcagni kick)


Turner 10‑123, 1 TD;
Whitfield 15‑59, 1 TD;
Bradley 7‑32
Wonsick 6‑31
Hunter 14‑54, 1 TD;
London 6‑27;
Lawrence 12‑19;
Mullennex 3‑6;
Toth 1‑3.

Whitfield 7‑15‑1, 59 yards 1 TD.
Lawrence, 5‑14‑1, 108 yards 1 TD.

Williams 2‑29;
Wiles 2‑9;
Martin 1‑9, 1 TD;
Limbach 1‑7;
Mohler 1‑5.
London 2‑40;
Chine 2‑15;
Mitchell 1‑53, 1 TD

George Whitfield