Tag: <span>Tiger Stadium</span>

Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1974: Massillon 20, Canton McKinley 15

Final-Seconds Aerial Blasts Rally by Pups

Repository Sports Editor

MASSILLON – At a few moments past the hour of four o’clock Saturday afternoon, an inflated brown leather ellipsoid floated downward from the sky.

It nestled in the arms of a young man by the name of Edward Bell, an 18-year old who is enrolled at Washington High School here and who just happened to be jogging about in an area of real estate known as Tiger Stadium.

Program Cover

His specific location was a plot known as “The End zone” – an appropriate name, for his simple act of catching the ball “ended” many things.
It was the end of the scoring in this 79th scholastic football classic which has pitted the young warriors of Canton McKinley and Massillon Washington high schools since 1894 (flu scratched a game during World War I), put the 79th episode into the books reading Massillon 20, McKinley 15.

It ended the Canton McKinley undefeated record this season at nine, blasting hopes for the first 10-0 season since 1956.

It ended the McKinley Bulldogs’ dreams of a berth in the Ohio High School Athletic Association championship playoffs. New Philadelphia High will represent Region 3.
It ended the dramatic and brilliant McKinley comeback, which saw the Pups’ Roch Hontas kick a 25-yard field goal for a 15-14 lead only 73 seconds before the game clock was due to run out.

Game Action 1974 vs. McKinley

It also will mean the end, no doubt, of McKinley’s No. 1 ranking in the wire service polls. The Pups were attempting to win the mythical wire service title for the first time since 1955 and 1956, when they won back-to-back championships with 20 straight wins over two seasons.

Bell was catching the beautiful, crisp, clear, sunny afternoon’s second TD pass thrown by teammate and quarterback Greg Wood, a youngster much maligned but now vindicated.
Wood hit halfback Mark Streeter with a 24-yard scoring strike when the game was but nine-and-one-half minutes old, and the Tigertowners smelled an upset.

Game Action 1974 vs. McKinley

Massillon’s first score was no fluke, as the Tigers drove the ball 71 yards in 12 plays after stopping McKinley on fourth down and a foot.

The Bulldogs’ Mike Kolbs pounced on a Massillon fumble on the third play of the game, but McKinley couldn’t cash in.

Trailing 7-0 McKinley got on three yards on three plays after the kickoff and Hontas punted to the Tigers’ 36, from where Wood engineered his second scoring drive.
Wood, who was one of the whipping boys for the boo-birds and boosters when Massillon lost three of its first four games this season, again whipped his team down the field and in a dozen plays had used up three minutes, 50 seconds of playing time, covered 63 yards and put another seven points on the board.

Wood himself did the honors, diving the final two yards over the right side.

Game Action 1974 vs. McKinley

Hontas got the Pups moving, finally, as he began hitting his aerials.
The Pups scored on a 36-yard pass from Hontas to end Ruben Floyd. But when Jonathan Moore, McKinley’s leading rusher and scorer, failed to make the three yards for the
two-point conversion, the Pups were a long eight points behind.

The drive was 77 yards in 13 plays, but was kept alive by a major Massillon mistake, a roughing-the-kicker penalty on a fourth-and-14 Hontas punt at the Bulldogs 19.

Massillon with 237-pound fullback Bill Harmon and slippery scatback Tom Grizzard (both juniors) roaring through massive holes opened by a rejuvenated Tiger offensive forward wall, mounted yet another threat.

The Tigers tidal wave trundled down the turf to the McKinley 28 before ebbing. From there, Dave Dowd, who kicked the two PATs, missed a field goal try from the 35.

But the short chip shot hit like a nine iron on the five yard line and McKinley was 95 yards away from the equalizer and the fourth quarter was two plays old.

Hontas retreated into his own end zone and flipped a screen pass to wingback Bob Armstrong, who got out to the 13, and the McKinley march was on.

Massillon linebacker Dennis Bricker made what looked like a drive-stopping tackle on a screen to Floyd at the Bulldogs own 21, setting up a fourth-and-two situation.
But faint heart never won a football game and Moore got eight on a sweep and the march continued for 95 yards in 18 plays, capped by fullback Bob Lombardi’s three-foot blast to pay dirt with 3:37 left in the game.

Hontas’ pass to Lombardi was incomplete and the Tigers still prevailed by a pair, 14-12.

The ensuing on-side kickoff bounced into a mass of Massillon and Canton players and McKinley’s Eric Llewellyn came up with the football and the Pups were born again.

Hontas quickly completed a pair of passes to Tom Grafton and Ray Ellis and Lombardi got nine yards in three tries to set the state for what the Canton backers would love to have settled for.

With Bill Poulos holding, Hontas kicked a 25-yarder right through the middle of the uprights, putting three points on the McKinley side and joy in the hearts of Canton fans.

The clock read 1:13.

Then came the dirge, tolled by the “Bell”.

Wood threw the ball three times and Bell caught all three on down-and-out patterns for 12, 9 and 12-yard gains.

He missed one and then got sacked and the ball was at the McKinley 34 with 13 seconds remaining.

Bell lined up on the right side, blew downfield and started another cut to the outside, but then suddenly flew for the goal.

He was all alone past the goal line when Wood’s toss settled into his arms. The clock showed there were six seconds remaining.

It was Massillon’s 43rd win in the long series against 31 losses. There have been five ties.

It put Warren and McKinley in a tie for the All-American Conference title for the second year in a row. Last year, the two shared it with Massillon also.

The victory gave Massillon a 6-4 season record and today in Tigertown nobody even remembers those four losses that happened such a “long time ago sometime this season.”

Massillon 7 7 0 6 20
McKinley 0 0 6 9 15

Mass. – tb Mark Streeter, 24 pass from qb Greg Wood (g Dave Dowd kick).
Mass. – Wood, 2 run (Dowd kick).
Mck. – e Ruben Flloyd 36 pass from qb Roch Hontas (run failed).
Mck. – fb Bob Lombardi, 1 run (pass failed).
Mck. – Hontas, 25 FG.
Mass. – se Eddie Bell, 34 pass from Wood (pass failed).

Tigers Score
On Desperation Pass
Massillon Stuns McKinley

Beacon Journal Staff Writer

MASSILLON – “If I live to be a 100,” said one veteran sportswriter, “I’ll never see a football game as exciting as that one.”

The gentleman was referring to Saturday’s clash between Massillon and Canton McKinley in which the Tigers scored on a 34-yard touchdown pass with only five seconds remaining to shock the previously undefeated Bulldogs 20-15 before 21,754 at Tiger Stadium.

Massillon ends 6-4 and McKinley 9-1.

The victory was especially disappointing to McKinley because it probably cost the Bulldogs a spot in the Class AAA computer playoffs.

The Bulldogs held a 14-point lead over New Philadelphia in Region 3 of the latest computer poll but the Quakers beat previously undefeated Dover Friday night which should give them enough points to overtake McKinley.

The two players mainly responsible for the Tigers’ victory were quarterback Greg Wood and split end Eddie Bell.

It appeared McKinley had won the game with 1:13 left when the Bulldogs Roch Hontas kicked a 25-yard field goal to put McKinley ahead 15-14.

But following the ensuing kickoff which Massillon returned to its own 35-yard line, Wood and Bell teamed up for three straight pass completions to move the ball to the McKinley 31.

Wood was then dropped for a three-yard loss but on the next play Bell slipped behind the McKinley secondary and Wood lofted a perfect pass which Bell gathered in over his shoulder in the corner of the end zone.

“EDDIE ran a beautiful patter,” Wood said. “I just laid the ball up there. I knew he was going to catch it as soon as I threw it.”

“I heard the McKinley coaches yelling to watch for the deep pass,” Bell explained. “But the McKinley players must not have heard them. That was probably the biggest catch I’ll ever make.”
Late Score Keys Massillon
Massillon coach Chuck Shuff said, “I couldn’t believe it when I saw Bell in the open.” And neither could McKinley’s John Brideweser.

“We were in a prevent defense,” he explained. “And the one thing that is NOT supposed to happen is a deep pass. But those things happen.”

The Tiger defense shut out McKinley’s high scoring offense for the first 24 minutes in limiting the Bulldogs to only four first downs and 84 yards.

Massillon’s ball-control offense, on the other hand, was equally impressive as it scored 14 points in the first half and rolled up 12 first downs and 203 yards.

Massillon, which did not punt once, took a 7-0 lead with 2:35 remaining in the first quarter when Wood hit Mark Streeter with a 24-yard touchdown pass and David Dowd kicked the first of two conversions. The drive covered 71 yards in 12 plays and took almost six minutes.

FOLLOWING a McKinley punt, Massillon drove 67 yards in 11 yards to increase the margin to 14-0 with 9:59 left in the half. Wood got the touchdown on a fourth-and-goal situation from the two.

The Bulldogs pulled to within 14-6 following the second half kickoff by driving 70 yards in 12 plays. The touchdown came on a 36-yard pass from Hontas to Ruben Floyd. The conversion failed when tailback Jonathan Moore was stopped short of the goal.
After stopping a Massillon drive at the Bulldog 13, McKinley fullback Bob Lombardi scored on a one-yard run with 3:53 remaining to cap a 95 yard, 17-play drive. A pass for the conversion failed and Massillon led 14-12.

McKinley followed with an onside kick and the Bulldogs Eric Llewellyn recovered tat the Massillon 46. Eight plays later Hontas kicked the apparent winning field goal.

MASSILLON 7 7 0 6 20
McKINLEY 0 0 6 9 15

MASSILLON – Streeter, 24 pass from Wood (Dowd kick).
MASSILLON – Wood, 2 run (Dowd kick).
McKINLEY – Floyd 36 pass from Hontas (run failed).
McKINLEY – Lombardi, 1 run (pass failed).
McKINLEY – Hontas 25 FG.
MASSILLON – Bell, 34 pass from Wood (pass failed).

Shuff Officially Accepted
in Tigers’ Lair

Repository Sportswriter

MASSILLON – This proclaimed scholastic football capital of the United States has added another full-blooded Tiger to its lair.

“I’m a Tiger now!” exclaimed a shell-shocked Chuck Shuff when the first-season Massillon Washington coach finally wormed his way into his office – some 30 minutes after his Tigers (6-4), unbelievable 20-15 conquest of arch-rival Canton McKinley (9-1) before a Tiger Stadium throng of 21,754 football fanatics Saturday afternoon.

The storybook finish is unparalleled .

“I JUST COULDN’T believe it when I saw Eddie Bell in the open,” Shuff said of the 34-yard pass the 5-foot-10, 154-pound senior split end caught (in the end zone) from classmate Greg Wood. It came as the Tigers merely were driving for field position to give placekicker Dave Dowd a shot at a field goal attempt.

“I don’t think we could call for another ounce of energy out of any of our boys,” Shuff said of the physically drained coaches and players.

“We stopped their running game as far as the big play and that type of defensive effort took a lot of noise,” he said.

The McKinley loss assured Behling’s 9-0-1 Quakers a berth vs. Upper Arlington in this week-end’s Ohio Class AAA playoff semifinals.

“I thought it was all over,” Behling said of the Hontas field goal, “but that’s the Tiger spirit.”

“Never any worry,” former Massillon and Kent State University coach Leo Strang told Shuff, but it was Strang who appeared worried at half time. He’s the guy who had his fingers crossed as he wandered through the stands to say hello to his Tigertown friends.
– : –
“IT’S THE GREATEST victory I’ve ever been in,” shouted long-time Tiger aide Nick Vrotsos before he and his fellow coaches took what each proclaimed as “the best one (shower) I’ve ever had” when the players escorted their coaches to the drink.

“Hey guys, we don’t have to walk the alleys. We can walk the streets,” Vrotsos shouted to his fellow coaches from the showers.

One-time McKinley standout L.C. Young, the Massillon superintendent of schools, embraced Shuff and said, “Just keep it going.”

“Something good had to happen,” Young said. “We lost the levy (Tuesday) and these boys and coaches just went through hell.”
– : –
AMONG THOSE who probably were in the rocker room were two former Massillon players – Phil Garcia and Nick Pribich – who Friday sent Behling and the Quakers a telegram and assured them: “If you beat Dover (New Philly did, 7-0), we’ll do our part tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon and come Monday you’ll be No. 1.”

AND that’s the main reason Behling left the office he once worked in proud as a peacock – and with the Massillon-Upper Arlington game film in his grasp.

It’s ironic how this series has been a thorn in the side of what is supposed to be the favored team.

However, the intense rivalry is what makes this classic so great. It was only 12 months ago the Bulldogs knocked the Tigers out of a play-off berth.

21,754 Fans Jam
Tigers’ Lair For Thrilling Clash of Old Foes

Repository Staff Writer

MASSILLON – There are rumors the world does not revolve around the annual McKinley-Massillon football game.

That may be true, but you’ll never convince thousands of rabid fans on both sides of the traditional rivalry.

And they were out in force Saturday – 21,754 strong – at Tiger Stadium to watch the Massillon Tigers smash their way past McKinley’s Bulldogs to rack up a final-seconds
20-15 victory.
Like a Movie Thriller
The final Massillon touchdowns – with six seconds showing on the clock – looked like the plot clincher in an old 1940s college football movie.

In fact, the entire game had a certain “scripted” appearance to it.

Weather was perfect for the big climax to both schools’ schedules, with bright sun and temperatures in the low 60s to warm spectators, but just enough breeze to keep players from becoming uncomfortable.

Near Massillon’s city limits, incoming Canton fans traveling bumper-to-bumper found crepe-paper-covered cars along the roadway, their sides and trunks plastered with giant “Beat McKinley” signs.

Such vehicles were greeted by jeers and groans from west-bound autos displaying a different kind of sign – “Beat Massillon.”

Approaching the stadium the noise was the first thing that hit arrivals.

A calliope, blended with honking horns and clanging cowbells, provided an overlying pattern of high-pitched accents, while shouts, cheers and jabber of the crowd produced a back ground buzz that increased in intensity as people filled the stadium.

There were shouts of players – clear and strong during warm-up exercises but lower and harsher as they began to pound each other during the game. Above all was the blare of the loudspeaker.
Hot Dogs and Pizza
There was plenty to keep the other senses busy, too.

The air was filled with the smell of popcorn, hot dogs and pizza. You could smell the aroma of recently rain-moistened earth, too, and there was just a hint of smoke.

The eyes, too, were attracted to splashes of color that dotted the stands, with oranges and reds of the two schools livened by the bright November sun.

There was food and drink to appease taste buds, as well, and as for touch – well, who says the field is the only place at a football game where there is contact?

Saturday, Massillon and McKinley fans were squeezed into Tiger Stadium like a Size-12 foot in a Size-10 shoe. Activity at the concession booths under the grandstand at halftime was really something else, too.

You’d think someone over 6 foot tall who weighs in at 210 pounds could hold his own against a bunch of 10-year-olds at the hot dog stand, wouldn’t you?

Well, forget it. Those kids squirm and push their way to the front of the line like first-string fullbacks running through a second-string defensive line.
Game Takes Over
But once the game got underway, no one paid much attention to anything but what was happening on the gridiron.

Less than a minute into the second quarter, with The Tigers only one touchdown ahead, Paul Akers of 425 15th Street NW, president of the McKinley Alumni Booster Club, still was confident.

With the Bulldogs putting on a defensive stand at their own four-yard line, Akers said, “I know the Pups are going to come through for us.”

“C’mon, Bulldogs! You can hold’em!” he shouted, jumping to his feet. The McKinley defensive unit held. It was fourth down and four yards for a touchdown.
The Dream Dies
“We’re going to show Massillon who’s NO. 1. I tell you, we’re going to come back,” Akers declared.

He jumped up again as play resumed and a Massillon ball carrier rammed his way across the goal line. A shout died on Aker’s lips and he stood with his arms at his side, a dejected expression on his face.

A few yards away, Phyllis Kobie of 2855 Thackeray Drive NW, Massillon, was every bit as excited as Akers was upset.

“I think it’s just fantastic! Massillon’s going to win this game!” she shouted over the blare of the nearby McKinley band.

Joe Studer
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1968: Massillon 6, Canton McKinley 26

’69 Tigers’ task: bring bell back
Few bright rays in 26-6 defeat


The locomotive bell rests today at Canton McKinley high school – a symbol of one of the tasks that await the Washington high grid team in 1969.

Not many bright rays come out of a beating like the Massillon Tigers took last Saturday, but the realization that there is always a next year helps somehow to soften the blow.

Program Cover

Tigers fans know that the Orange and Black – like the fabled Phoenix bird – will rise from the ashes of defeat to begin anew when next September rolls around. The Tigers never stay down long.

There’s only one way to describe their 26-6 defeat before 22,300 at snowy Tiger Stadium. The Orange and Black were out manned – but not out fought.

The Tigers were unable to cope with the hard-firing Bulldog offensive line, the powerful rushes of juniors Rocco Rich and Rich Brown, fullback and halfback respectively. Another junior, wingback Ed Floyd, got timely big yardage on reverses.

The slight-of-hand of senior quarterback Mark Hontas and the pursuit and penetration of McKinley’s defensive line led by Jon Brandyberry, Lonnie Ford and Brown’s brother Mark were also factors.

Adding to their miseries, the Washington high eleven lost the services of senior tailback Jim

George Whitfield (66)

Smith, leading rusher and scorer in the All-American conference (AAC) in the first quarter via an ankle injury. Trainer John Whitmer called it a “freak muscle stretch” of a type he’d never seen before.

“It sure couldn’t help us,” Massillon coach Seaman said. “It had to hurt us.”

The loss of a great back like Smith is bound to hurt a team,” McKinley Coach Ron Chismar, said.

McKINELY HIT Massillon with two quick scores in the first quarter after capitalizing on a couple of breaks. A poor snap and a short punt gave McKinley the ball on the Massillon 46. Floyd and Rich combined 18 and 13-yard runs to set up the Pups’ first score.

Rich drove over right tackle from the one with 7:38 left. Hontas’ conversion-attempt pass to Rich was incomplete.

Another short punt following the kickoff put the ball on the 40. Floyd and Rich again combined their talents for 12 and 28-yard runs to set up the second score.

Rich went over left tackle – this time from the two – at 5:40. Brown ran the conversion through left tackle.

The Orange and Black’s only touchdown drive – a 64-yarder after Mark McDew’s 26-yard runback – saw the Tigers grind out the short yardage after Smith got hurt at the beginning of the drive. A 15-yard personal foul penalty and five-yard off side walk off were important.
* * *
FULLBACK MIKE AUTREY scored around right end from 27 yards out, using the sideline like a tightrope and putting forth great second and third efforts. Malinowski’s attempted conversion pass to McDeew was broken up by Ed McMillan with the clock showing 1:14.

The Tigers never got out of their own territory after that.

1968 Massillon vs. Canton McKinley

Dave Couto and Chuck Stoner stopped a McKinley drive at the Massillon six and Bert Dampier hauled in a Bulldog pass on the Tiger 10 to stop another in the second stanza.

In the third period, Mosie Hunter nabbed a Tiger aerial at the McKinley 44 and added an 11-yard runback to the Massillon 45 to set up another Bulldog pay dirt trip. Aided by a personal foul step off and the running of Hontas, Brown and Rich, the Bulldogs made it
20-6 at 8:16 as Hontas scampered for four off right tackle.

The conversion attempt on a run by Brown off left tackle failed.

Rick Laase kayoed a McKinley drive in the third canto with a fumble recovery at the Massillon 36 shortly before Hunter’s interception.
* * *
MASSILLON stopped a Bulldog march on the Tiger eight in the last period, but the Bulldogs got the ball right back on the Massillon 38 after a punt. A fourth down, 13-yard pass-run combination from Hontas to Floyd and a 19-yard romp around right end by Hontas after a fake set up the final Canton score.

Hontas rammed through the middle from the one with 2:13 left but missed around right end on the conversion attempt.

“Anytime you beat the Tigers, you’ve got to be happy because they have a great team,” Chismar said. “Our kids were great, I’m proud of them.”

He added, “Our backs were not fantastic, just strong. We didn’t run anything we hadn’t used before. Floyd got us yardage when we had to have it.”

Chismar praised Calvin Ellis, Hunter, McMillan and Monroe Jackson who, Chismar said, sacrificed themselves to play in the defensive secondary this year.

HE ALSO GAVE a pat on the back to backup quarterback Nick DeGregorio, first to jump up and congratulate Hontas after the game.

“They were a good team – one of the best I’ve seen since I’ve been here, if not the best,” Seaman said of McKinley. We played the biggest part of the game behind the 50. That was the game. I’d say we let them have the football too darn much. Hontas really hid the ball well.”

It was the second time in three years that Chismar had beaten Seaman – both times at Tiger stadium. McKinley (9-1) finished in a tie with Warren Harding for the All-American conference title, both with 4-1 league marks.

Massillon (7-3, 3-2) finished runnerup, only the second time the Tigers have ended out of the throne room in the loop’s six-year history.

McKinley 14 0 6 6 – 26
Massillon 6 0 0 0 – 6

First downs –rushing 2 17
First downs – passing 2 3
First downs – penalties 3 1
Total first downs 4 21
Yards gained rushing 81 206
Yards lost rushing 30 26
Net yards gained rushing 31 236
Net yards gained passing 29 37
Total yards gained 80 273
Passes completed 3-15 3-6
Passes intercepted by 1 2
Yardage on passes intercepted 0 23
Kickoff average (yards) 3-44.5 3-47.6
Kickoff returns (yards) 96 36
Punt average (yards) 6-27.3 2-36.5
Punt return (yards) 2 0
Had punts blocked 0 0
Lost fumbled ball 0-1 1-2
Yards Penalized 4-40 2-20

George Whitfield
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1966: Massillon 16, Canton McKinley 25

Seaman Says ‘Wait Until Next Year’
McKinley Wins; Bengals Have Losing Mark

Independent Sports Editor

Fans of the old Brooklyn baseball Dodgers had the right idea at a time like this: “Wait until next year.”

Washington high Coach Bob Seaman had his own version: “We’ll be back next year and should have a heck of a team.”

The error-pocked and anguish-filled 1966-football season is history. The final chapter was penned Saturday in a bruising 25-16 Tiger stadium loss to Canton McKinley in the 71st annual inter-city classic.

Program Cover

For the first time since 1931 the Bengals ended below .500 with a 4-5-1 record. There have been only 4 other seasons of 8 or more games since 1894, which have ended below the
Break-even point.

The only consolation for Seaman was that he has a lot of company among first-year coaches who have lost to McKinley. Seven other mentors, including Paul Brown, either lost to or were tied by the Bulldogs in the first or only year those coaches were here.

McKinley ended a 9-year famine in wining and assured itself of a winning season under Ron Chismar with a 6-4 record. The Bulldogs also dropped the defending champion Tigers into a cellar tie in the All-American High School football league at a 1-3 ending.

Niles won the title with a 3-0 record, Steubenville finished 2-1, Warren 2-2.

Massillon’s play, at times Saturday, resembled the zany Dodgers referred to above. Maladies, which have plagued them all-season burst out in full bloom – inability’s to handle kicks and fumbles. Three McKinley touchdowns happened because of miscues on handling kicks. The fourth resulted from an inability to stop a punt return.
* * *

SOME SAY the Pups didn’t deserve the win but they were a good enough team to capitalize on the breaks and reverse the script of the past 2 seasons when the Tigers bounced back to win after half time deficits.
The contest started as if it were to be a high-scoring affair with both teams scoring in the first one minute, 54 seconds of play. McKinley went over on the first play from scrimmage after Bengal sophomore Marc Malinowski attempted unsuccessfully to return George Fronimo’s stocking footed, soccer-style kickoff which rolled pass Malinowski to the 5-yard line. End Henry Lewis recovered a fly ball fumble on the 9.

Quarterback Milford Lucius passed to halfback Leroy Wilder, who was to score twice more, on the 5 with Wilder carrying the rest of the way. Fronimo’s boot made it 7-0 with 11:32 remaining.

Halfback Tommy James got the Obiemen to their 38 with a 29-yard runback of the next kickoff. On second and 4 from the 44, fullback Will Foster cut through the center and back to the right for the Tigertowners’ longest run from scrimmage this season at 11:26. Quarterback Craig Maurer hit James in the right corner of the end zone to make it 8-7 in Massillon’s favor.

Massillon scored again in the first quarter but not before squandering a first and 10 at the Bulldog 18 after a pass interception by Foster with a fumble by James recovered by halfback Ted Bowersox.
* * *

LINEBACKER Hoyt Skelton pilfered again on the Pups’ 40. Four plays later, Maurer took off from 26 yards out on first and 10 and scampered into pay dirt on a counter keeper to the left at 3:55. He hit James with another right corner end zone pass for a 16-7 score that was the Bengal fans’ last cause for joy.

McKinley missed an opportunity after Jim Krenzer’s punt was blocked by one of his own men at the beginning of the second stanza. George Austin recovered on the Massillon 25.

On third down Clayton grabbed a pass on the 25, ran to the 17, was pushed out of bounds and into the east track seats. A 15-yard personal foul infraction was called during the melee and Chismar rushed onto the field to engage in a violent argument with head linesman Joe Romano.

McKinley was set back to the 30. Linebacker Ron Ertle intercepted a pass on the next play to halt the drive.

Massillon was forced to hold on again later in the period when Bulldog linebacker Jerry Hontas recovered Foster’s fumble on the Tigers’ 24.

Fronimo’s bad-snap punt following the first Bulldog series of the second half grazed Tiger junior Trevor Young; subbing for James, who was injured earelier. Pete Coleman’s recovery gave the Bulldogs a life on the Tigers 34.
* * *
EIGHT PLAYS after a 12-yard run by Lucius and an 11-yard scamper by fullback Larry Clayton, who broke tackles numerous times during the afternoon, Wilder scored around the left side on a pitchout at 4:21. Lucius was halted short of conversion territory as the scoreboard showed Massillon with a 16-13 lead.

Massillon got the ball but once in the third quarter going nowhere.

With Fronimo punting on the second play of the final stanza, junior Tiger safetyman Kevin Henderson fumbled on the 5. Coleman recovered again – this time on the half-yard line.
Lucius sneaked through the center at 11:28 for the score. Fronimo tried to run the conversion after a bad snap, fumbled after a tackle. Bowersox recovered and ran over but the ball was ruled dead, giving McKinley a 19-16 lead.

Fronimo kept the Tigers in the hole with long punts in the second half and the Bulldog defense kept the Orange and Black there. On one of these frustrating occasions Krenzer punted to Wilder on the McKinley 42. A touchdown runback along the west-side line resulted at 4:21 with the help of a block by Paul Robinson at the 3.
* * *

FRONIMO MISSED on the PAT. McKinley led 26-15 but the Tigers weren’t dead even though many fans started to exit.

The Bengals got back to the McKinley 4 after the kickoff to 8 and 20-yard passes to sophomore halfback Mark McDew and senior tight end Keith Griffin and 7-yard runs by Foster and Maurer. But the Tigers ran out of downs.

In the last minute of play, Maurer hit McDew for an 8-yarder and interference was called on a 24-yarder. It took several minutes to clear fans off the field in order to run the final play after the penalty, which had occurred as time lapsed. A pass into the end zone was incomplete.

Seaman agreed that the Tigers had been placed behind the 8-ball too many times by errors. “Each week we’ve done something wrong,” he said. “This time the specialty team hurt us.” Then he mused, “McKinley got a negative 3 yards in the last quarter and 3 touchdowns. We evened the battle of statistics.”

Chismar said, ‘It was a real great game. Our linebackers Hontas and John Patterson did as much as anybody to shut off their defense. But it was a team effort.”

The much-hearlded battle of fullbacks was a standoff. Clayton, who left the contest in the final quarter with torn ankle ligaments had 83 yards in 19 tries. Foster had 85 in 14.

Ends – Snell, H. Lewis, Iams.
Tackles – Austin, Adamski, Rushe.
Guards – Robinson, Sweat, Shimek.
Centers – Dowing, Coleman.
Quarterbacks – Lucius, Bowersox, Hontas.
Halfbacks – Wilder, B. Lewis, LeFlore, Fronimo.
Fullbacks – Clayton, Patterson.

Ends – Griffin, Moyer, Smith, Sterling, Richards, Liggett, Gallion.
Tackles – Houser, Campbell, Neago, Sherrett, Ricker.
Guards – Porrini, Russell, White, Hauenstein, Beiter, Ertle.
Centers – Senften, Kraft, Skelton.
Quarterbacks – Maurer, Henderson, Malinowski, Young.
Halfbacks – James, Simon, McDew, Fenton, Hannon, Staples,
McFadden, Muhlbach.
Fullbacks – Foster, Moore.

McKinley 7 0 6 12 25
Massillon 16 0 0 0 16

Massillon – Foster (58-yard run); Maurer (27-yard run).
McKinley – Wilder 3 (9-yard pass run from Lucius, 3-yard run, 58-yard punt return);
Lucius (half-yard run).

Extra points:
Massillon – James 4 (passes from Maurer).
McKinley – Fronimo 1 (kick).

Referee – Tony Pianowski.
Umpire – Harold Rolph.
Head Linesman – Joe Romano.
Field Judge – Brenton Kirk.

Attendance: 20,140

Massillon Opp.
First downs – rushing 5 5
First downs – passing 1 0
First downs – penalties 2 1
Total first downs 8 6
Yards gained rushing 168 124
Yards lost rushing 32 22
Net yards gained rushing 136 102
Net yards gained passing 35 19
Total yards gained 171 121
Passes attempted 11 9
Passes completed 4 2
Passes intercepted by 3 0
Yardage on passes intercepted 24 0
Times kicked off 3 5
Kickoff average (yards) 52.3 51.6
Kickoff returns (yards) 94 63
Times punted 6 5
Punt average (yards) 25.3 36.8
Punt return (yards) 0 85
Had punts blocked 1 0
Fumbles 8 3
Lost fumbled ball 5 1
Penalties 3 3
Yards penalized 32 35
Touchdowns rushing 2 2
Touchdowns passing 0 1
Touchdowns by interception 0 0
Miscellaneous 0 1
Total number of plays 50 53

Will Foster
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1963: Massillon 24, Canton McKinley 20

Tigers Beat Fired-up Bulldogs 24-20
Point Conversions Represent Bengals’ Margin Of Victory


The yellow lights on the scoreboard at the south end of Tiger stadium seemed to take an eternity to toll off the last 4:20 of the game. And when they had blinked out 0:00 against the black October night sky, a huge sigh of relief and a mighty cheer came up from Tiger fans.

The Washington high school eleven, playing gritty football, had held on to edge arch-rival Canton McKinley 24-20 in the 67th renewal of the oldest high school grid rivalry in the nation.

Friday night’s game marked the first time any Massillon-McKinley game had been played under the arcs. It was also the first game in the new All-American High School Football league.

The two teams will meet again on the afternoon of Nov. 9 at Fawcett stadium in Canton. And you can be sure they’ll pack the place for that one.

An unofficial 16,252 sat in Friday night.
* * *
THAT THE BULLDOGS gave Massillon all they could handle and then some is for sure. But the Orange and Black also dished out its share of hard-hitting football.

The game seemed to become a personal vendetta between Massillon’s Bill (Rabbit) Blunt,
165-pound senior halfback, and McKinley’s Willie Hall, 225-pound junior fullback, to see which one could inflict the heaviest damage on the opposition.

Blunt scored two touchdowns and two conversions. His use of the limp leg and swivel hip gave him a good change of pace, enabling him to do some outstanding running.

Said his Coach Leo Strang, “He was terrific. His stop and go running was great.”

Said Tony Ware, “Blunt is a great athlete.”

Hall didn’t score any touchdowns but he did pick up a conversion and lots of valuable yardage, including some key first downs as did Massillon’s fullback, junior Jim Lawrence.

Game Photo: Bill Blunt (45)

Ware said of his big back, “He did a tremendous job.”
* * *
STRANG REVEALED, “Hall caught us by surprise. He had never run sweeps before. We adjusted just in time at the end of the game.”

Hall had tremendous interference on those sweeps which made them very effective as he bulled his way through.

Strang said of the game, “It was a good one, like all Massillon-McKinley games should be. Besides Blunt’s and Lawrence’s running I thought Swartz (quarterback Ron) did some good throwing. “We gave them two touchdowns and missed two we should have had. You just can’t give them touchdowns and not expect trouble.”

About the McKinley team he said, “They were sure fired up. They were in the game all the way.”

Ware said, “Massillon is a well-coached team and played good ball. They took advantage of an injury weakness at left side (the speedy Bill Snell was sidelined) and it hurt us.”

Strang reminded that “linebacker Ken Swisher, defensive end and Captain Mike Jones and tackle Tom Miller were either out of action or used sparingly.

Of his own team Ware said, “I couldn’t ask for anymore from the boys. They gave their all. We’ll beat the Tigers in November. We would have beaten them this time if we had scored on that first pass and hadn’t fumbled on the one.”

But the Bulldogs got two tremendous breaks in the second half which they converted into touchdowns, offsetting the bad breaks. Had it not been, therefore, for the tenacious Massillon defense rising up to stop two of McKinley’s conversion attempts, the game might have ended tied 24-24.
* * *
THE FIRST BREAK came right after the second half kickoff. Massillon was forced to punt following its first series. Steve Kanner dropped back to his 45-yard-line. Frank Scassa’s snap was bad, the kick was blocked and 210-pound right tackle Dick Miller picked up the pigskin on the 41 and raced in for the score with 10:04 left.

Hall converted through the center to make the score 16-14.

The next break came midway through the last quarter. Massillon forced McKinley to punt and as the ball rolled to the Massillon 26, it hit safetyman Tom Gatsios and an alert Bulldog recovered.

Three plays later on third and one from the 17 quarterback Arnie Fontes threw to right end Nick Roman down the middle at the goal line to make it 24-20 with 4:27 remaining. Hall missed the conversion.

The Tigers played good control football from there on out to win the game. The last play of the game, however, saw Fontes sweep right end for 21 yards and just miss getting away for a winning tally. McKinley had gotten the ball with only 26 seconds left.
* * *
McKINLEY BECAME the first team to score at Tiger stadium this year and the first to get a touchdown before the Tigers by going 57 yards after taking Massillon’s initial punt. Fontes scored on a keeper from the two-hard line on second down with 3:03 remaining in the first quarter.

He missed the conversion on the same play.

Hall and halfbacks John McElroy and Bobby Johnson did a lot of running on the drive. Hall had one run of 19 yards around left end from his 43 to the Massillon 38. The missed pass which Ware spoke of came during this series. Fontes misfired to left end Dwayne Lipkins on second down from the Tiger 30.

The early touchdown only served to infuriate the Tigers and after Tom Gatsios had turned in an 18-yard runback of the kickoff to the Massillon 35, Ron Swartz cocked his right arm and hit Blunt down the right side. “The Rabbit” grabbed the pigskin on the McKinley 40 and eluded five would-be tacklers on his romp to pay dirt at 2:39. He got some fine blocking along the way.

Blunt blasted off right tackle for the conversion which put the Tigers ahead 8-6.

Massillon struck again early in the second period. McKinley punted after one series. The kick was grounded on the Bengals’ 39 with 13 seconds left in the first quarter.
* * *
BLUNT TOOK off over right tackle on the first play of the second quarter behind good blocking. He used that outstanding running ability of his to good advantage again, going all the way to the McKinley three. But the Tigers were guilty of clipping and were set back to the McKinley 35.

The Bengals marched the ball in from there with Lawrence going over the top of a big pile from the one with 6:22 left. Blunt went off right tackle for the two extra points.

McKinley took the kickoff and marched 70 yards only to have Johnson fumble on the one. Blunt made the all-important recovery for Massillon.

McElroy had an 18-yard runback of the kick. Hall had a 36-yard romp on a sweep from the Massillon 46 to the 10.

The Tigers then initiated a drive of their own, going to the Bulldog seven before missing on three straight before missing on three straight passes into the end zone. The margin of difference was inches.
* * *
DURING this 92-yard invasion, Blunt took a pass on the right side and almost went for a touchdown but collided with long side end Will Perry who was trying to block for him. The play covered 25 yards – from the Massillon 13 to the 38.

There was also another fine run by Blunt off left guard – again with good blocking – on the next play. “The Rabbit” moved all the way to the McKinley 11, 51 yards.
Massillon’s other score came at the 5:45 mark of the third quarter. Blunt ran a kickoff back 26 yards to the Bengal 38. Then with Blunt, Swartz – who seldom runs the ball – and Lawrence carrying, the Orange and Black moved the ball to the Bulldog 28 for a first down.

Blunt set sail again on the next play, going to his right, cutting back and racing for touchdown land. Again a combination of good running and fine blocking told the tale. Swartz converted.

Game statistics showed that Massillon got a total of 382 yards net to McKinley’s 217. The Tigers piled up 271 rushing. McKinley 200. The Bengals got 111 passing, the Bulldogs 17.

The fact that McKinley lost only four more yards rushing than did Massillon, 16-12, points up the terrific, almost even battle of the lines.

Massillon’s record now stands at 5-1 with a four-game winning streak riding. The Bulldogs stand at 3-3.

Ends – N. Roman, Turner, Lipkins and Card.
Tackles – Miller and Shumick.
Guards – Vafides, Barney and Ball.
Center – J. Roman.
Quarterback – Fontes.
Halfbacks – Johnson, McElroy, Carter and Smith.
Fullbacks – W. Hall and Kalogeras.

Ends – Pierce, Perry, Hose, Jones and Goodnough.
Tackles – Morgan, Lash, Rarle, Binge, Paul and Passalacqua.
Guards – Castile, Larsuel, Rivera, Muhlback, Roderick, Swisher and T. Whitfield.
Centers – Scassa, Frank and Rambaud.
Quarterbacks – Swartz, Gatsios and Kanner.
Halfbacks – Blunt, Getz, Eckard, Schenkenberger, and Marks.
Fullbacks – Lawrence.

McKinley 6 0 8 6 20
Massillon 8 8 8 0 24

McKinley – Fontes (two-yard run); Miller (41-yard run on blocked kick); N. Roman (17-yard pass from Fontes.
Massillon – Blunt 2 (65-yard pass from Swartz and 26-yard run); Lawrence (one-yard run).

Points after touchdown:
McKinley – Hall (run).
Massillon – Blunt 2 (runs). Swartz (run).

Referee – Bobby Brown (Parma).
Umpire – Harvey Hodgson, Jr. (Massillon).
Head Linesman – Bill Makepeace (Cincinnati).
Field Judge – Joe Romano (Mansfield).

Massillon Opp.
First downs, rushing 12 9
First downs, passing 4 1
First downs, penalties 0 1
Total first downs 16 11
Yards gained rushing 263 216
Yards lost rushing 12 16
Net yards gained rushing 271 200
Yards gained passing 111 17
Total yards gained 382 217
Passes attempted 8 3
Passes completed 4 1
Passes intercepted by 0 0
Times kicked off 4 4
Kickoff average (yards) 45.0 36.2
Kickoff returns (yards) 62 82
Times punted 1 4
Punt average (yards) 42.0 34.2
Punt returns (yards) 15 0
Had punts blocked 1 0
Fumbles 1 1
Lost fumbled ball 1 1
Penalties 2 1
Yards penalized. 20 15

Bill Blunt
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1960: Massillon 42, Canton McKinley 0

Tigers Wait For Poll After Crushing Win
65th Game Is History As Locals Maul Pups, 42-0, Before 19,036


The ‘City of Champions’ has been assured of another championship.

Combining an awesome display of offensive power, a virtually immovable defense and an unquenchable fighting spirit which led them back from the 19-18 loss to Warren to three irreputable victories, the No. 1 ranked Washington high school Tigers ‘trapped’ Canton McKinley into its worst defeat of the 65-game football series, 42-0, before 19,096 impressed fans Saturday afternoon.

It was a sunshine filled football finale for 24 Washington high seniors who were given individual thunderous applause when Coach Leo Strang removed them from the lineup one by one, for the last time in their high school grid careers.

Program Cover

With the realization an impressive victory was necessary to cement the top ranking they have maintained during the entire 1960 season, the Massillon gridders performed their task with precision workmanship.

* * *
STARTING with the first time the Tigers took possession minutes after the start of the game, their unmistakable superiority was grossly evident. In the first six plays it had the ball, Washington high moved 76 yards, Ken Dean rolling the final 32 for the touchdown.

* * *
HEROES WERE MANY. But Art Hastings, the sure-fire all-Ohio fullback who scored four times with a scintillating display of broken field running, and Lawson White, who generaled the defensive wall, were exceptionally out-standing.

For Hastings, the afternoon was reminiscent of many evenings throughout the past two years. He concluded his final two years of varsity competition with 220 points, over 2,400 yards rushing and innumerable other marks which may withstand the assaults of future years.

* * *
THE TURNING point of the game was when Massillon kicked off.

McKinley’s top scorer Jim Patterson covered Dean’s kickoff on the 12. Three plays, then a five-yard penalty netted the Bulldogs a first down, their only one in the first half.

Marty Gugov (75)

Sirgo punted with Bob Baker fumbling it back to the 18. He then picked it up and returned to his own 24. Quarterback Dave Null picked up 25 yards, Dean seven and Hastings 12 to the Pup 32. Dean then went in behind Center George Demis and short side guard Gary Wells, broke to the west stand sideline and sprinted 32 yards into the north end zone for a 6-0 lead. Ken added the conversion but an illegal motion penalty ruled it out. Null’s pass was then incomplete for a 6-0 lead at the 5:48 mark.

Receiving the kick, McKinley failed to move. Sirgo booted out of bounds on Massillon’s 43.

The Tigers moved to the Canton 38 before a fumble with McKinley’s George Smith recovering. Again the losers failed to move. Sirgo booted again, this time to the Massillon 24.

Martin Gugov, still hobbled by the bad knee, started the TD drive with a 23-yard burst. Dean, Null and Hastings quickly complemented that run by moving to the McKinley 15 early in the second period.

* * *
HASTINGS then eluded tacklers three different times while streaking into the end zone for his first of our scores on another trap, this time through Demis and Jay B. Willey, long side guard. Hastings’ PAT attempt failed keeping the lead at 12-0.

With the Cantonians again stalling, Sirgo booted with Baker returning the ball to the 34. A clip on the 43 gave the locals first and 16 on their 28.

In six plays the Tigers had racked up TD No. 3 with Hastings barreling in from 29 yards out. Dean has chipped in 35 yards and Hastings 22 in the drive, which was slowed by a
15-yard holding call against the hosts.

A final first half scoring bid was thwarted by a holding call which set the locals back to the 24 after Null had combined with Hastings, then Charlie Brown, to the Pup nine. Hastings was tossed down on the 31 as the half came to a close. Massillon led, 18-0.

The Tigers met a similar fate at the start of the second half as they moved from their own 32 to the McKinley 18 where a fourth and eight pass from Null went astray.

A defensive holding penalty and a 14-yarder by Roland DiMickele brought the ball to the mid-field stripe, for Canton. Sirgo then had to punt with Baker ripping up the sideline while bringing the ball back to his own 49.

On the next play Hastings went through the same hole Dean used in his first period score for 51 yards and a touchdown. Charlie Brown added the two-point conversion for a 26-0 lead seven minutes into the final half.

* * *
DEAN’S next kickoff went to Patterson who fumbled with Dave Smith pouncing upon the ball on the McKinley 33. In three plays, including a 15-yard toss from Null to Larry Ehmer, the Tigers had moved to the enemy five. Hastings then bolted off his inside tackle for the score. Quarterback John Larson added the conversion on a keeper for a 34-0 advantage after three periods.

McKinley took Dean’s next kickoff and moved to the hosts’ 41 before losing the ball on downs.

Hastings picked up 24, nearly breaking away for his fifth tally. But then the Tigers faltered. Deans’ punt on a fourth down situation was blocked with Tom Wucinich recovering on the Tiger 37.

Three plays, including a completed pass, lost nine yards, Sirgo booted and Baker returned it to his 36.

Joe Heflin, playing his final game, streaked for 11 and a first down on the Bengal 47. On the next play, he ripped through the line and out-raced the defending Bulldogs for a
53-yard touchdown. Dave Smith went behind his outside tackle for the final two points of the productive 348 point season.

With Strang letting each of the seniors take his bow, the final drive by Massillon carried to the Pup six. There an incomplete pass gave Canton possession.

They picked up 21 yards in our carries as the season came to an abrupt halt.

* * *
THE TREMENDOUS pressure placed on McKinley Quarterback Tom Sirgo by White, Gary Wells, Wally Brugh, Duane Garman, Ken Herndon, Jim Houston and Ken Ivan, permitted the usually sure-fire passer only two completions, both in the flat, for a net gain of no yards. His first one picked up four but the second connection lost them all back.

* * *
IT WAS also an extremely pleasing performance for Coach Leo Strang, who with the victory, tied Chuck Mather for the most victories gained by a Washington high team in the first three years as Tiger coach. The win was No. 28 against only two defeats and a tie.

In three years against the Bulldogs and losing McKinley Coach Jim Robinson, the Tigers have turned in three straight victories. The Saturday invaders haven’t scored in their last 10 quarters after the 16-16 first half tie in Strang’s initial year at the helm, 1958.

But after 11 regular season games and two weeks with the victorious North All-Stars beginning in August, Strang was indeed ready to call it a coaching year.

“I’m glad it’s all over,” Leo disclosed with a beaming victory smile outside the Tiger dressing room. “It’s been a long one.”

Not once during the entire afternoon did the Bulldogs, owners of 320 points in 10 previous games, put together what even resembled an offensive threat. Early in the fourth period a 15-yard gain by Matt Brown, a 15-yard holding penalty against the Tigers, and several short gainers moved the Bulldogs to the Massillon 41.

That’s the most the visitors could do.

* * *
THE CLIMAXING game of the 1960 season gave the Orange and Black an impressive 10-1 slate marred only by the one-point loss to Warren. The win also kept Strang’s perfect home string in tact. In three years under Strang, the Tigers have yet to bow at Tiger stadium.

With the squad in as close to perfect health during the last three games as anytime during the season, the Tigers chewed up over a mile rushing and passing.

The 1,657 yards came on 517 yards in the Toledo Waite game, 544 against Springfield South and the 596 against ancient rival Canton McKinley.

Houston, Brugh, Wells, Garman, Gugov, Bob Herring, Joe Smith, Null, Larson , Demis, Willey, Richard Crenshaw, Ron Herbst, Virgil Bukuts, Herndon, Pete Anzalone, Don Kurzen, Theopolis Bodiford, Jim Fuchs and Chuck Royer along with Dave Smith, Hastings, White and Heflin closed out their high school football careers.

It was a pleasant finale that the boys won’t soon forget.

A Fine Finale

Ends – Bodiford, Royer, Ivan, Anzalone, Ehmer, Fuchs, Houston.
Tackles – Crenshaw, Bukuts, Brugh, Garmon, Herndon, Herbst.
Guards – White, Willey, Wells, Radel, Whitfield.
Centers – Demis, Bradley.
Backs – Null, Larson, Baker, Alexander, Hastings, J. Smith, Dean,
Snively, Schenkenberger, Kurzen, Herring, Gugov,
Heflin, D. Smith, Brown, Lash.

Ends – Beane, Singleterry, Luchitz.
Tackles – Dragomer, Agnes, Day.
Guards – turpin, Seymour, Wucinich, Thomas, Ghezzi.
Centers – Hudak, Carr.
Backs – Sirgo, Pettersoh, DiMickele, Smith, Wood, Cobb.

Massillon 6 12 16 8 42

Massillon – Dean (32, run); Hastings 4 (15, run; 29, run;
51, run; 5, run); Heflin (53, run).

Massillon – Larson (run); Brown (run); D. Smith (run).

Tigers Bulldogs
First downs – rushing 22 3
First downs – passing 2 0
First downs – penalties 0 3
Total first downs 24 6
Yards gained rushing 573 90
Yards lost rushing 22 17
Net yards gained rushing 551 73
Yards gained passing 45 0
Total yards gained 596 73
Passes attempted 6 12
Passes completed 3 2
Passes intercepted by 0 0
Times kicked off 7 1
Kickoff average (yards) 41.0 48.0
Kickoff returns (yards) 20 73
Times punted 1 8
Punt average (yards) 0 37.6
Punt return (yards) 73 0
Had punts blocked 1 0
Fumbles 2 1
Lost fumbled ball 1 1
Penalties 4 2
Yards penalized 60 30

Art Hastings
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1956: Massillon 7, Canton McKinley 34

McKinley Has Too Many Guns For Tigers
Martin Ball Of Fire Against Tresselman


A COMBINATION OF the irresistible force and the immovable object.

That would be an apropo description for Canton McKinley’s Bulldogs who, before over 23,000 fans at Tiger stadium Saturday afternoon, provided proof that they are worthy of the title, “1956 Oho state football champions.”

The best ball club to face a Massillon team in many a year and probably the best of all McKinley arrays without a doubt played its best game of the season and proceeded to paddle the out-manned but always-fighting Tigers by a stunning 34-7 count.

Let’s give McKinley credit. It had the horses as it:
1. Went undefeated for a second straight year and extended the school record to 20 triumphs in a row.
2. Beat Massillon for a second season in a row, the first time this trick has been pulled since 1933.
3. Handed the Tigers their first loss on home sod for the first time since Mansfield turned the tide in 1949.
4. Gave a Massillon team its worst beating since the 35-0 thrashing of 1942.
5. Registered 34 points to hike its school record to a season total of 490 points in 10 games. The old mark was 487 points in 11 contests.
6. And captured the state title for a second straight year, another first for a Bulldog team.

Program Cover

According the Bulldogs the championship and the Rutgers Hall of Fame trophy that goes with it is only a matter of formality.

The loss for the Tigers was the sixth over the last 10 campaigns and it marked the first time since 1947 the Bengals dropped two in one year. The Tiger record of eight wins, two setbacks, is the school’s worst since the 6-4 mark of 1947.

McKinley thus scored as many points in one game as it did against the Bengals in the seven previous years combined. And the win was the Bulldogs’ 27th in the ancient and colorful rivalry. Massillon, which has been the victor 29 times (five battles ended in ties) now has won 22, lost 12 and tied three over the last 36 years.

It was the ninth straight year the Tigers and Bulldogs had met with the state title riding on the outcome. Up until last season the locals had grabbed the brass ring seven consecutive years.

And now let us give credit to the local team, the more inexperienced and immature of the two.
* * *
LEE TRESSEL’S aggregation might have folded after being hit so hard early in the game but the Tigers never gave up trying. And when they realized they were a beaten ball club they fought back even harder.

But some bad breaks, their own mistakes and the stout McKinley defense left them a cropper.

Coach Tressel said the fumble on the first play after the kickoff following McKinley’s initial touchdown hurt his team immensely and who is there to disagree? There was another fumble after the second Bulldog TD and the Tigers were in a hole they were never able to get out of.

Three fumbles lost to the enemy and two pass interceptions stalled the Tiger attack and Tressel attributed the local defense to a “good McKinley offense.”

“They were a great ball club Saturday but I felt we were better than we showed. We certainly could have done a better job,” he said.

That sterling McKinley offense was centered around Quarterback Ron “Ike” Grimsley, the magician who directed the Bulldogs in his usual fine fashion; All-Ohio Bob Williams, who was simply great on defense and plucked two Massillon passes out of the air and also pounced on a Tiger fumble, all in the third period; little Phil Martin, a will-o-wisp who wrecked the Tigers with his sensational running in the first half; and Wayne Fontes, his running mate at halfback who ran equally as well inside as he did outside.

The mercury-footed Martin tallied on runs of five, 57 and 77 yards in that order and finished up the day with 191 yards in 15 carries – an average of 12.7 yards per trip. Fontes made 95 in 16 runs and Grimsley gained 81 in 14. The latter’s passing wasn’t anything to brag about but the Bulldogs were hardly pressed into going to the sky.

Mike Hershberger, the boy with a man-sized heart, led the Tiger attack despite the fact he was hampered by his bad knee. He carried 13 times for 68 yards, blocked with abandon and turned in an outstanding defensive game. Speedy Ivory Benjamin collected 74 yards in 15 carries and “Chuck” Beiter, took over for Chester Brown at fullback and picked up 43 yards in eight trips. Even for a losing cause, there were other Tiger stats.
* * *
THE BULLDOGS, who did very little wrong, went on the prowl after they won the toss of the coin and elected to receive. They pounded off the tackles and skirted the end like demons for 14 plays.

Fontes too Tim Krier’s kickoff on the 22 and got back to the McKinley 35 from which point Grimsley went on the air. Big Williams got behind the defenders at the Tiger 35 but the pass sailed over his head and the invaders then decided to hoof it.

Fontes had a hole at the left side for 10 yards and four plays later, on a fourth and two situation, blasted through center for four yards as he kept his team rolling at the Tiger 43. Only Hershberger kept Grimsley from going all the way and after Ike’s 16-yarder the Bulldogs chopped off short yardage to reach the five. At 6:01 Martin, with the aid of a nice block by Fontes, raced around the right flank for the first Bulldog TD and Grimsley followed with the first of his three conversions.

This had happened to the Tigers on many other occasions in the past and usually the Orangemen retaliated with a bang. But after Brown returned Williams’ kickoff 13 yards to the Massillon 38, Benjamin fumbled after dashing eight-yards.

Linebacker Jesse Chenault covered the pigskin at the Bulldog 38 and McKinley was in business again. After Fontes and Fullback Arnold Lewis made two a piece, Martin wowed the crowd and stunned the Tigers again. He got off a 56-yard pay dirt jaunt by going off right tackle, working himself loose from three would-be tacklers and cutting away from two more. In the clear at the Orange 40, he raced to the end zone without too much effort. Grimsley again converted with (text unreadable) the period.

Less than a minute later Rinehart fumbled and McKinley had a break again, this time at the Tiger 18. After a 15-yard holding penalty, Grimsley tossed to End Bob Burchfield for 15 yards and from the 13, Grimsley threw again. Martin made a beautiful catch as he fought off two defenders but he was out of the end zone and the Bulldogs were stymied, temporarily anyway.
* * *
IN THE SECOND period, following a punt exchange, Benjamin recovered his own fumble on a punt and from their own 19 the Orangemen picked up steam. They made one first down on the ground and another via the airlanes as a reverse pass, Gene Stewart to End Don Elavsky, netted 19. But from the Bulldog 40 the Tigers had to kick. Hershberger’s kick was taken by Fontes, hit immediately by Benjamin and the ball was on the eight.

Mr. Martin made it 20-0 in a jiffy. After he lost two, Fontes picked his way for 17 yards to the 23 to set the stage for Martin’s third touchdown dash of the half. On a 77-yarder, the scatback went to his right, faked two defenders out of the way and sped to the end zone.

The Tigers came up with their first real thrust after Washington returned the kickoff to the Bengal 36. Benjamin did a neat bit of running for 19 and Hershberger spun and fought his way for 20 and a first down at the Bulldog 26. Tiger fans were yelling for a score but Massillonians were to be denied this time. Hershberger made three and Benjamin five to make it third and about two at the 18.

Then the Tigers, trying to catch the enemy by surprise, decided to take to the air. Rinehart intended to slip the oval to lanky Clyde Childers but Childers slipped and fell and the smooth Tiger quarterback was forced to “eat it.”

Coach Tressel later explained that the coaches had noticed the McKinley halfbacks coming up fast as the Tigers stayed on the ground. The strategy called for a long throw to Childers but things went haywire as Childers fell and the other eligible receiver, Benjamin, was covered. On the next play Tackle Harry Sylvester knifed in to throw Beiter for a six-yard deficit and the locals’ bid was stopped.

Williams was the fly in the Massillon ointment during the third period. The Tigers had possession four times but twice Williams intercepted a pass and on anther occasion be recovered a fumble.

At the outset of the canto he hauled in a Rinehart pitch and ran back to the Massillon 32. In just six plays the Bulldogs tallied again. Fontes started the drive with a 17-yard sprint and from the four he bulled over to make it
27-0 at 7:41.
* * *
THREE PLAYS after the kickoff Williams covered the Tiger fumble at the Bengal 18 and soon McKinley hit the jackpot for the fifth time. From the 13 Grimsley went back to pass, decided he had to run with it, and run he did. He ran to the left, then cut back toward the west sidelines and wasn’t hit until he crossed the final stripe.

Near the end of the period Fontes punted into the west stands and the Tigers began to percolate from their own 48. Hershberger made eight, Beiter seven and Benjamin made 11 yards on the last play of the session.

Benjamin sandwiched five yards between five by Hershberger for a first down at the 16 and the Tigers weren’t to be shutout even though they lost four on a fumble. Hershberger came back with five before Beiter tallied from the 15. The junior fullback ploughed through right tackle and had good blocking as he scored at 9:40. Davie Richardson converted for the 21st time this season – his 11th one in a row.

After an exchange of punts the Bulldogs began to move again. Hershberger punted, with his beauty going out of bounds at the eight, and the McKinley lads advanced to the Tiger 30 before the game came to a close.

The 22,993 paid admissions brought Massillon’s total attendance for seven home games to 98,159. This was the third largest number to see Tiger teams play at home in modern history.

It was the last football game in a Tiger uniform for 16 boys – Elavsky, Krier, Rinehart, Hershberger, Richardson, Washington, Chester Brown, Bob Brown, Dick Brenner, Joe Wells, Tom Mays, Dick Whitfield, Jim Mercer, Bruce Bixler, Tom Meldrum and Bob Kiplinger. McKinley will lose 12 by graduation, including such boys as Grimsley, Fontes, Bob Williams, Phil Martin, Dick Martins, Dick Roknich, and Burchfield, plus Guard John Ifantides, who will be too old for scholastic competition next fall.

The summary:
ENDS – Elavsky, Brenner, Hagan, Childers, Wells, Mays.
TACKLES – Mercer, Whitfield, Halter, Bixler, Brownlee.
GUARDS – Meldrum, B. Brown, Heine, Herimann.
CENTERS – Krier, Kiplinger.
QUARTERBACKS – Rinehart, Stewart.
HALFBACKS – Hershberger, Benjamin, Bivings, Washington, Richardson.
FULLBACKS – C. Brown, Beiter, Reese.

ENDS – B. Williams, Burchfield, Reeves.
TACKLES – Roknich, Paul Martin, Koeliner, Sylvester, S. Williams, Patterson.
GUARDS – Ifantides, Bender, Chenault.
HALFBACKS – Phil Martin, Fontes.
FULLBACKS – Lewis, D. Martins.

McKinley 14 7 13 0 34
Massillon 0 0 0 7 7

McKinley scoring:
Touchdowns – Phil Martin 3; Fontes, Grimsley.
Extra points – Grimsley 3 (placements).

Massillon scoring:
Touchdown – Beiter.
Extra point – Richardson (placement).

Massillon McKinley
First downs, rushing 10 17
First downs, passing 1 1
First downs, penalties 0 0
Total first downs 11 18
Yards gained rushing 207 396
Yards lost rushing 32 6
Net yards gained rushing 175 392
Yards gained passing 19 28
Total yards gained 192 420
Passes attempted 4 9
Passes completed 1 2
Passes intercepted by 0 2
Times kicked off 2 6
Kickoff average (yards) 35.0 43.3
Kickoff returns (yards) 86 29
Times punted 2 2
Punt average (yards) 31.7 18.5
Punt returns 9yards) 1 -2
Had punts blocked 0 0
Fumbles 6 2
Lost fumbled ball 3 0
Penalties 2 6
Yards penalized 6 60

Mike Hershberger
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1954: Massillon 26, Canton McKinley 6

Tigers Win Battle For State Title
Massillon Gridders Smash McKinley 26-6; Await Final AP Poll


Having surprised their most loyal fans by the manner in which they lashed Canton McKinley 26-6 before an overflow crowd in Tiger stadium Saturday afternoon, the Washington high Tigers today awaited the result of the final press polls which determine the Ohio high school champion. The game had been billed as a battle for state title.

Ohio sports writers and radio commentators cast the ballots, and judging by last week’s voting (and despite organized efforts of one or more other high schools to lure votes) the Tigers are expected to be proclaimed state champs a seventh consecutive year.

The Massillon gridders ranked second, (behind Canton McKinley) in all three major news services last week, and should move into the No. 1 spot as a result of their convincing triumph over the state’s top ranked team.
* * *
THE VICTORY leaves Massillon with a 9-1 record which is the same status as that of Mansfield and Alliance high schools. The Tigers handed Mansfield its only loss, an 18-0 defeat and Alliance handed Massillon its one defeat 19-7. But Massillon also whipped the Bulldogs, the team that mauled Alliance 26-6. It was Canton’s second loss.

The Rutgers Hall of Fame trophy will be awarded the winner of the Associated Press poll, biggest of them all.

The Tigers were magnificent in their triumph over the Bulldogs.

Entering the game a seven-point underdog, the Massillon gridders tore into their Canton adversary with a determination that could not be stopped.

“They played like a team that wanted to be state champion,” Canton Coach Wade Watts, deeply disappointed, said after the game. “Homer Floyd was the difference,” he stated as he complimented the Tiger halfback for his great exhibition.

And Tiger Coach Tom Harp, with a lock of hair hanging over his forehead and a smile from ear to ear, said, “We thought we could do it all along. We knew we were playing a great football team and we prepared accordingly.”
* * *
THE MASSILLON line played almost flawlessly and the backs blocked well. The vaunted Bulldog ground attack was grounded and the Canton aerial fireworks stopped.

The 26-6 scored hardly tells the superiority of the Massillon team. You will find it better in the statistics which show the Tigers with 21 first downs to Canton’s six (two of the six came on a penalty and pass interference) and 446 net yards gained to 135.

The Tigers scored one touchdown in the second period, two in the third and one in the fourth. Canton’s only score came in the fourth quarter.

The Tigers actually lost what could have been three other touchdowns when a pass was dropped in the end zone, and the ball lost on fumbles as the locals were on the seven and three-yard lines while in possession of a first down.

It was a personal triumph for the youthful Harp who took over a tough assignment this summer without benefit of spring practice, and won nine of his 10 games.
* * *
HARP STEPPED into the big footprints left by Chuck Mather when he walked off to the University of Kansas last winter after winning the Ohio championship six consecutive years.

None dared to expect the ex-Carrollton high coach with only three years of experience behind him to win nine of 10 games and a possible state title in his first year.

He installed his own system at the start of fall practice and saw his team slowly catch on as the autumn progressed. By mid-season he pulled his first upset by downing Mansfield high, which had been favored to win by at least a touchdown. He got his squad up for that one, and he had them up again Saturday – and how.

Seldom have we seen a Massillon line play as the Tiger line did Saturday, or the blockers lower the boom on opposing tacklers with as deadly timing.

You can praise the backs for their hard running, but the guys who made it possible were, Robert Williams, Dave Canary, Ken Lorch, Bob Williams, Chuck Hill, Joe Holloway, Russ Maier and Tom Spicer.

They hit hard on offense and bolstered by Ronnie Moore, Jim Schumacher, Jim Houston, Tom Stephens, Bob Cocklin and Dick Fromholtz, plugged all leaks on defense.

As Floyd said after the game when asked how he felt: “Fine. The boys sure blocked swell for me today. I couldn’t have run without them.”

And how he ran!

He personally carried the ball 28 times, and gained 263 net yards, scored two touchdowns and intercepted two Canton passes.

His longest run, a 55-yard dash, went for naught as he fumbled when tackled on the
three-yard line, the ball rolling into the end zone, where Bulldog Horace Harris recovered for a touchback.
* * *
WHILE FLOYD put on a great show, the surprise to Canton was the hard running of Jerry Yoder. The Bulldogs had expected trouble from Floyd but Yoder made as much yardage as Floyd the first half and ground out the Tigers’ first touchdown. He carried 19 times for a net gain of 125 yards. Ronald Boekel was used sparingly. He carried only seven times and gained 38 yards. Rich Crescenze and Andy Stavroff each carried once, Rich gaining a yard and Andy losing one.

It all adds up to 426 net yards gained on the ground. Add to that 20 yards made on two completed passes, one of which went for a touchdown, and you have 446 net yards gained for the Tigers.

In containing the Bulldogs the Tigers allowed them but 86 net yards on the ground and 49 in the air.

The personal duel between Canton’s flashy halfback, John Goodrich, and Floyd which had been ballyhooed in some papers and by some radio commentators was a fizzle. Floyd was so far in front there was no comparison. Goodrich carried nine times for 43 net yards gained. His longest run went for 21 yards in the third quarter which followed a 40-yard bootleg play by Canton’s Ronnie Carnahan. The two plays netted 61 of the yards gained by McKinley.

The Tigers knew they had to stop Goodrich to win for he was the Bulldogs’ high point man with 119 points for the season.
* * *
McKINLEY never could get its offense rolling properly. Coach Watts said a head injury to Quarterback Jim Dreher on the very first play from scrimmage which forced him out the rest of the game hurt to some extent since he counts the cadence of the Canton team, but Watts hastened to say that he did not want to take anything away from the Massillon victory. Dreher got jolted by Floyd’s knee when he tackled him.

The Bulldogs’ only effort in the first half came on a long pass to Herman Jackson following a 15-yard penalty slapped on the Tigers for unnecessary roughness. Canton was offside on the pass play, however, and lost what would have been a first down on the 17-yard line.

The Tigers on the other hand were a threat virtually every time they got the ball in their hands but still failed to score until only 55 seconds remained of the first half. Then they shoved over the first of their four touchdowns, Jerry Yoder going across from the one. Floyd scored both of his touchdowns in the third period and Robert Williams got the final in the fourth period on a five-yard flip from Crescenze.

Herman Jackson scored the Bulldogs’ lone touchdown in the fourth quarter on a 13-yard pass from Goodrich.

Andy Stavroff almost went to the Promised Land on the kickoff when he was clear at midfield, but lacked the speed to keep ahead of the pack and was felled on the Canton 43.

Floyd and Yoder smashed to a first down on the 31 but the attack fizzled out and the Tigers lost the ball on the 25.
* * *
McKINLEY quick-kicked on third down to the Massillon 21 and the Tigers got one first down before being stopped in midfield and forced to punt, Tom Stephens kicking to the 23.

The Bulldogs gained but one yard in three attempts and kicked out on the Massillon 38.

Yoder race 18 yards to the Canton 44 but Floyd lost the ball on a fumble, Goodrich recovering for Canton on the latter’s 38. Three plays would have ended in a net loss of a yard had not the Tigers been called for unnecessary roughness and McKinley given a first down on the Massillon 47 with a 15-yard penalty.

Then followed the long pass to Jackson for what would have been a first down on the Tiger 17 but McKinley was offside and penalized five yards. Three plays gained seven yards so Goodrich punted to Floyd on the eight who was nailed by Sheeler when he tried to cut after catching the ball.

Momentarily in the hole, the Tigers worked out as Yoder and Floyd got a first down on the 21 and Floyd ripped off 13 for another first on his 34. He gained sic more and then caught a pass from Crescenze that produced 15 yards and a first down on the McKinley 45. Floyd and Yoder carried to a first on the 30 but, after Yoder gained two yards, three Massillon passes were wasted and Canton took over on its 28.

Again the Bulldogs were forced to punt and the ball went out of bounds on the Canton 41.

This time the Tigers were not to be denied. Floyd, Yoder and Boekel, in that order made a first down on the 27. Floyd ripped through to a first on the four with a beautiful 23-yard run. Yoder crashed for three. Crescenze moved it almost to the goal and Yoder whammed over for the six points.

Morrow missed the attempted point and the clock showed 55 seconds left to play.
* * *
FOLLOWING the kickoff, Sheeler tossed 15 yards to Goodrich for the Bulldogs’ only earned first down of the first half. They tried it again but this time Holloway intercepted and ran back to the Canton 27.

With only five seconds left, Crescenze shot the ball toward Robert Williams in the end zone. It was on the tip of his fingers, but he couldn’t hand on to what would have been the back-breaking touchdown.

Williams was almost despondent in the dressing room during intermission. Coach Harp grabbed him as he headed for the locker room and told him to forget it, and every player slapped him on the back with the encouraging remark, we’ll get some more next half, while he sat weeping, head in hands.

And get some more they did.

They changed several blocking assignments the second half designed to free Floyd and Yoder, and they worked out just as hoped for.

On the first play from scrimmage after the kickoff Floyd almost got away, going 32 yards to the Canton 43. And Yoder in two attempts went to the 30, Floyd picked up two more, and when Canton spread its defense to meet the Tigers’ new blocking pattern, Floyd shot through the middle on a quick opener for 28 yards and the second T.D. of the game.
* * *
FLOYD GETS credit for the touchdown, but he was probably thinking of Maier and Hill on this play when he said, “I got some good blocking today,” for it was Maier and Hill who opened the gap in the Bulldog line that allowed Floyd to speed through for the points.

This time Morrow kicked the extra point and it was 13-0.

Floyd stopped Canton after the kickoff when he intercepted Goodrich’s long pass and came back to his 45.

Yoder startled the folks by immediately racing to a first down on the Canton 27 and Floyd in two carries had another first down on the seven. A lateral toss to Yoder was wide and Jerry couldn’t hand on to it, Canton ending the threat by covering a fumble on its 13.

Three McKinley plays only gained four yards so Goodrich booted to Floyd who was downed on his 43 with no return. Yoder on the first play went 21 yards to the Canton 31 and Boekel headed through center for 18 more and a first on the 13. A pass over the line was grounded but Floyd circled his right end for the third touchdown and Morrow kicked the 20th point.

That made the Bulldog snarl a bit.

Frasker Jackson returned Morrow’s kickoff well to his 31 and Carnahan on a bootleg fooled the Massillon team as he headed around his left end and went 40 yards before Fromholtz somehow or other shifted through a wave of Canton blockers and got him.

Now it was Goodrich’s turn to show what he could do and he went 21 yards for his best run of the day to the eight. But that was it.

Goodrich took it two more times, made three and wound up back where he had started. Carnahan tried to sweep his end and was thrown for another loss of 10 yards. A grounded pass finished the threat and the Tigers took over on their 18.

Boekel got a yard and Floyd three as the third period ended.
* * *
WHEN FLOYD failed to gain, Stephens dropped back to punt and got a high pass from center. He picked up the ball dropped it to his foot and gave a feeble kick after being all but down. The ball didn’t cross the line of scrimmage, just going to the 17. That gave McKinley another chance.

A pass to Sheeler was good for three and Jackson wiggled loose to reach the end zone where he caught a 14-yard toss from Goodrich for the Bulldogs’ only points. Canary broke through to block the attempted point.

Floyd got to his 42 with the following kickoff and on the next play went all the way to the three where he was overhauled by Bob Williams of McKinley. He fumbled when tackled, the ball rolling into the end zone where Horace Harris hopped on it for a touchback.

McKinley was given the ball on its 20, couldn’t get anywhere in two downs and for some unknown reason quick-kicked into the wind on third down.

The ball only went forward five yards, the Tigers taking it on their own 25.

Floyd in two carries got to the 13, and then to the five where Crescenze pitched over the line to Williams for the final touchdown of the game. Johnny James couldn’t get the ball down for Morrow so he tried to run for the extra point but didn’t make it.

Canton came back after the kickoff to move the ball to the Massillon 39 where Cocklin intercepted a pass and was knocked out doing it to end the threat with the ball on the 28. Two plays later the game ended.

The line-up and summary:
ENDS – Lorch, R. Williams, Houston, Canary, Francisco.
TACKLES – B. Williams, Hill, Blocher, Moore, Schumacher.
GUARDS – Maier, Holloway, Fisher.
CENTERS – Spicer, Morrow.
QUARTERBACKS – Crescenze, James.
HALFBACKS – Floyd, Yoder, Stavroff, Stephens, Fromholtz.
FULLBACK – Boekel.

ENDS – Sheeler, H. Jackson, Jack, Williams, Lancaster.
TACKLES – Kompara, Graham, Martins, Blackmon, Fohel.
GUARDS – Patrick, Bell, Clawson, Speroff.
CENTERS – Perdue, Fach.
QUARTERBACKS – J. Dreher, F. Jackson.
HALFBACKS – Goodrich, Carnahan, Garman, Grimsley, H. Harris.
FULLBACK – N. Harris.

Score by periods:
Massillon 0 6 14 6 26
McKinley 0 0 0 6 6

Massillon – Floyd 2; Yoder; R. Williams.
McKinley – H. Jackson.

Points after touchdown: Massillon – Morrow 2 (placekicks).

Referee – Dan Tehan, Hamilton.
Umpire – Jim Lymper, Mansfield.
Head Linesman – C.W. Rupp, Cuyahoga Falls.
Field Judge – Ted Jones, Chagrin Falls.

Individual And Game Statistics
Mass. McK.
First downs 21 6
Passes attempted 8 13
Passes completed 2 4
Had passes intercepted 0 4
Yards gained passing 20 49
Yards gained rushing 437 105
Total yards gained 457 154
Yards lost 11 19
Net yards gained 446 135
Times punted 2 6
Average punt (yards) 11 31
Yards punts returned by 4 0
Times kicked off 4 3
Average kickoff (yards) 41 51
Yards kickoffs returned by 97 22
Times fumbled 3 1
Lost ball on fumble 3 0
Times penalized 2 2
Yards penalized 20 10

Ball Carrying
Carried Gained Lost Total
Floyd 28 266 3 263
Yoder 19 132 7 125
Boekel 7 38 0 38
Crescenze 1 1 0 1
Stavroff 1 0 1 -1
—- —- —- —-
Totals 56 437 11 426

Goodrich 9 46 3 43
Carnahan 5 47 11 36
N. Harris 5 10 5 5
Sheeler 1 0 0 0
Garman 1 2 0 2
—- — —- —-
Totals 21 105 19 86

Homer Floyd
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1952: Massillon 41, Canton McKinley 8

Await Outcome Of Final Press Poll;  Massillon Gridders End Undefeated Season With Victory Over Old Rival


Having completed an undefeated season by whipping Canton McKinley 41-8 here Saturday afternoon, the Washington high Tigers today awaited the final Associated Press poll of the season Tuesday which is expect to name them state champions for the fifth straight year.

Program Cover

Virtually all but one of the writers who saw the Tigers maul the Bulldogs were ready to give Massillon the title after the game. Springfield’s representative, Dan Hoyt, wasn’t convinced, and remained loyal to his own Wildcats, for which we don’t blame him one bit. “I’d like to see the two teams meet, it would be a good game,” he said. Dan didn’t think McKinley very strong, but he should remember that the Bulldogs came within two points of beating Mansfield as badly as the latter was beaten by Springfield Friday.

The Cleveland, Canton and Akron papers in their Sunday write-ups gave the Tigers the title, which shows the line of thought of some of the boys.

The ballots were being cast today and Tuesday the results should be known.
* * *
THE TIGER victory over McKinley, scored before a paid attendance of 17,830, climaxed a great season for the Tigers and the team will go down in Massillon pigskin history as one of the greatest.

The victory extended to two games the Tiger edge over the Bulldogs in their 57-game series that dates back to 1894. Massillon has now won 27, Canton 25, while five ended in tie scores.

The triumph brought Massillon’s victory string to 13 games. It was the 47th win for Chuck Mather since he took over the helm here in 1948, and his second undefeated season.

His 1948, 1949 and 1951 teams each lost one game.

“I wouldn’t say this team was better than the undefeated 1950 team,” Mather said after the game. “We had a good bunch of fellows then, too. But I will say this was one of the best and certainly a fine bunch of players to work with.”
* * *
THE TIGER COACH gave them all a big pat on the back as he made the rounds in the hilarious locker room after the game.

The players themselves bore the marks of a hard-fought contest. They were scratched and bruised, and Fullback Lee Nussbaum, who emerged from the contest as the leading ground gainer, didn’t know the score. He had suffered a slight concussion which had him somewhat foggy for several hours.

Coach Mather gave the Bulldogs credit for playing a hard game and was even louder in the praise of his opponent after looking over the motion pictures Sunday. “If we hadn’t been up we would have lost this one,” he said. “Do you know they hit us three times as hard as we were hit all season? They were playing their hearts out. So were our boys and that’s the only reason we won.”

The hard play caused tempers to flare and Bob Khoenle and Sam Williams of Massillon and two Canton players were tossed out by the officials; Williams in the third period and Khoenle in the fourth.
* * *
MATHER was critical of the officiating. “It was the poorest officiated game I ever saw and you can quote me as saying so,” he said after going over the pictures.

Mather was a little disappointed in Misere’s performance until he saw the pictures. “After watching the pictures I admire how that little fellow stayed in there and took it. He really got a going over when passing,” he said.

Mather said he wasn’t going to single out any individual for praise. “They all did well, otherwise we couldn’t have won,” he said.

We noted, however, that he was particularly pleased with the way Nussbaum came through in his last high school game. He broke the Bulldogs’ back on the opening play from scrimmage with an end sweep of 40 yards and he finished the day with a fraction less than nine yards per try for the 21 times he carried the ball.
* * *
LEE GAINED 181 yards, John Traylor 93, John Francisco 54, John Tasseff 40 and Clarence Stewart 21.

The Tigers rolled up 390 yards by rushing, lost 28 for a net of 362. They gained 65 yards by passing, giving them a net of 427.

Their total offense in victory was as superior to the Bulldogs as the score on the board. McKinley gained 70 yards rushing and lost 21 for a net of 49. They gained 121 yards passing for a total net offense of 170 yards. First downs were just as one-sided, 22-7 in favor of the Tigers.
* * *
WHILE the ball carriers were having a track meet, the Tiger line and defense should be given a big share of the credit.

The linemen, Bob Khoenle, Sam Williams, Jim Geiser, Bruce Schram, Bob Clinage, Bob Kraus and Frank Corral slit the Bulldog forward wall wide open and consistently made big holes for the ball carriers to romp through. Their charge at the same time so bottled up the Bulldog backs that they spent much of their time running in their own backfield.

John Goodrich, ace of the Canton team, for instance, gained but 11 yards and lost seven, for a net gain of four in the eight times he carried the ball. Leading ground gainer was Dick Albert, the Canton ball carrier who had 21 yards to show for the five times he sneaked through center with the pigskin from his quarterback position.

The Tiger blocking was likewise something to behold. It was at its best on a 33-yard punt return by Traylor and a 32-yard run for the second touchdown of the game from a deep reverse. Johnny had five teammates convoying him over the goal line.
* * *
HARDEST TOUCHDOWN run was that unleashed by John Tasseff substituting for Johnny Francisco when the latter injured his leg. It was a 31-yard fourth period effort in which Tasseff raced down the sideline and without too much help shook off three Canton tacklers in disdain as they took their turn at trying to bring him down. The run produced the Tigers’ fifth T.D.

The game had its oddities, and two of them combined to give McKinley a safety, its first points of the game.

Willard Grimsley, who played a great defensive game for Canton and whose hard tackling stopped what might have been two or three more Tiger touchdowns, got off a beautiful
49-yard punt in the fourth quarter that stopped dead just inches short of the goal. We had not seen such a kick this season. Traylor stood with his heels against the end zone line as though to punt back, but ran with the ball. He barely got out, but Misere was caught pushing in the end zone which gave McKinley two points.
* * *
THE TWO POINTS seemed to pep up the Bulldogs because they took the following free kick on their 47 and in three plays had a touchdown, Albert tossing to Kenny Young for 49 yards and the score.

It was actually the only Bulldog threat. Canton never got over the 50-yard line the first quarter; got no closer than the 42 the second, and otherwise made its deepest penetration to the third when it marched to a first down on the 32 only to lose the ball on John Climo’s pass interception on the 14-yard line.

In addition to their touchdown bid the Bulldogs twice barely got over the 50-yard line in the fourth quarter, reaching the 42 both times.

The Tigers, on the other hand were dangerous every time they had the ball. Two 15-yard penalties for clipping and a couple of intercepted passes probably kept them from scoring two or three more.

In fact an intercepted pass stopped the initial march that might have gone for a score. This break however, was offset by Sam Williams, covering a Canton fumble on the seven and one-half yard line on the series of plays that followed.
* * *
WINNING the toss the Tigers elected to receive.

Traylor brought the kickoff back to the 26 and on the first play Nussbaum whirled around left end and went 40 yards to the Canton 34 where he was knocked out of bounds. Three plays gained but six yards and Misere’s fourth down pass was intercepted by Bob Washburn on the Canton 14.

The Bulldogs gained but a yard on two plays and Washburn fumbled on third down; Williams covering on the seven and one-half. The Bulldogs yielded ground stubbornly. Nussbaum carried twice and gained but three yards. Traylor on third down put the ball a foot short of the goal with a terrific lunge and Nussbaum took it over. Four minutes and 42 seconds of the period had expired. Tom Boone kicked the extra point, 7-0.
* * *
THE TIGERS stopped the Bulldogs on the 31 on the next series of plays forcing them to punt. Traylor made a brilliant 33-yard return to his 45. On second d own Misere tossed to Francisco for 29 yards and a first down on the 23 but the Tigers were penalized 15 for clipping, bringing the ball back to the McKinley 49. (The movies showed no violation). Francisco, Traylor and Nussbaum took turns at lugging the leather to the 20 where Misere was tossed for a 12-yard loss when he couldn’t find a receiver to pass to. That set the stage for one of the prettiest plays of the game, a deep reverse that saw Traylor come around his right end behind superb blocking for 32 yards and a touchdown. Boone’s kick was good. 14-0.

The Tigers were two-thirds of the way through the second period before they scored again. A 15-yard penalty for illegal use of the hands tied them up the first time they had the ball, forcing them to punt. They marched to a touchdown the next time, after getting the leather when Grimsley punted and out on the Massillon 31. Nussbaum put together runs of 16 and 24 yards in the drive that went to the four where the big fullback rammed it over. Boone kicked the extra point. 21-0.

The Tigers were on their way again in the period when Goodrich ended the threat by intercepting Misere’s pass on the Canton 38.

The locals scored the first time they got the ball in the third period but it took a lot of hard football to get it. Climo got the leather by intercepting Albert’s pass on the 14. A 13-yard pass, Misere to Bob Khoenle picked up a first down and the Bulldgos had a 15-yard penalty slapped on them for unnecessary roughness. Misere hurled a sweep pass to Tasseff good for 44 yards and a touchdown that went for naught because of the Tigers’ “illegal procedure”. Some hard running by Nussbaum and Tasseff and Misere’s 23-yard pitch to Khoenle put the ball on the four. On fourth down Misere bucked through center for the last foot and the fourth touchdown of the game. Again Boone kicked the extra point. 28-0
* * *
A 15-YARD penalty wiped out a first down on the Bulldog 30 late in the third quarter, forcing the Tigers to punt. Next time they got the ball which was early in the fourth period, they drove for their fifth touchdown. It started from the Canton 44. With Nussbaum dong most of the lugging, including a 24-yard effort, the Tigers moved the leather to the 31 and set the stage for Tasseff’s fine touchdown sprint. Boone missed his try for point. 34-0

Canton came back to score the safety and the touchdown already recorded here.

Boone’s interception of Albert’s pass and a runback of 16 yards put the ball on the Canton 14 and in position for the final points of the game. Francisco and Traylor took it to the three and Traylor went through the left side for the touchdown. Boone kicked the extra point. 41-8.

10 In A Row

ENDS – Williams, Khoenle, Letcavits, Crone, Gardner.
TACKLES – Geiser, Schram, Younkers, Gumpp, Rubio.
GUARDS – Clinage, Kraus, Shilling, Agnes, Dean, Fabianich.
CENTERS – Corral, Kimmins.
QUARTERBACKS – Misere, Johnson, Porter.
HALFBACKS – Traylor, Francisco, Boone, Millar, Floyd, Mlincek, Climo, Tasseff, Longshore.
FULLBACKS – Nussbaum, Stewart, Stone.

ENDS – Sheeler, Umbles, Young, Carter.
TACKLES – Cole, Barber, Kompara.
GUARDS – Wildes, Fach.
CENTERS – Noel, Rehfus.
HALFBACKS – Goodrich, Washburn, Grimsley, Bednareyz, Matthew.
FULLBACKS – Good, Burke, Mack.

Score by periods:
Massillon 14 7 7 13 41
McKinley 0 0 0 8 8

Massillon – Nussbaum 2; Traylor 2; Tasseff; Misere.
McKinley – Young.

Points after touchdown:
Massillon – Boone 4 (placekicks).

Safety – McKinley

Referee – Tobin.
Umpire – Rupp.
Head Linesman – Schill.
Field Judge – Sebastian.

Mass. McK
First downs 22 7
Passes attempted 12 24
Passes completed 4 10
Had passes intercepted 3 2
Yards gained passing 65 121
Yards gained rushing 390 70
Total yards gained 455 191
Yards lost 29 21
Net yards gained 427 170
Times kicked off 8 2
Average kickoff (yards) 38 51
Yards kickoffs returned by 35 128
Times punted 2 6
Average punt (yards) 38 34
Yards punts returned by 35 20
Times fumbled 2 5
Lost ball on fumbles 0 3
Times penalized 6 7
Yards penalized 70 54

Player Times Carried Gained Lost
Nussbaum 21 181 0
Traylor 6 93 4
Francisco 9 54 0
Misere 5 1 24
Tasseff 4 40 0
Stewart 3 21 0
TOTALS 58 390 28

Goodrich 8 11 7
Good 5 18 2
Washburn 1 0 8
Albert 5 21 0
Grimsley 4 11 4
Burke 2 9 0
TOTALS 25 70 21

Bob Khoenle
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1950: Massillon 33, Canton McKinley 0

22,000 See Tigers Smash McKinley Bulldogs 33-0
Massillon Gridders Win Third Consecutive Ohio Football Championship


The ambitions of a coach and football team were realized in Tiger stadium Saturday afternoon as 22,000 fans saw the Washington high school Tigers beat down the challenge of Canton McKinley’s Bulldogs by the impressive score of 33-0 to win their third consecutive state championship and their first Ohio conference crown.

Today Coach Chuck Mather was in possession of his first untied and undefeated seasons in his coaching career and the Tigers were able to boast that they had defeated Canton McKinley by more points than any other Massillon team had been able to measure the Bulldogs in the 55 games that have been played between the two teams since they first met in 1894.

Program Cover

Then too, the Tigers can have the additional honor of being the team that caught up with Canton McKinley. The series is all even now, each school having won 25 games, while five resulted in tie scores. There was a bit of personal pride for the 20 senior members of the squad too – they closed their football careers by having played on three state championship teams.

Not many boys in Ohio have been able to make that kind of boast. In fact only in Massillon have boys played on championship teams during their three years in high school. No other school has been able to win three in a row but Washington high since the Associated Press originated its organized football poll. The Tigers won seven in a row from the season of 1935 through 1941.

While the Tigers will not be officially crowned champions until the Associated Press announces the final standings in its poll this week – there’s no doubt as to how it will turn out – and the Tigers should be a unanimous choice for the title. Anyone voting otherwise will be voting sentiment and not sense for the Massillon team has been on top in the pool from the very first week of the football season.

It is the only time in the history of the poll, according to Fritz Howell, the originator, that one team has held the top rung every week of balloting.

In winning the Ohio Scholastic conference crown the Tigers beat all other teams in the conference.
* * *
THE TIGERS were magnificent in victory – the Bulldogs game in defeat.

There was no question as to the local team’s superiority. It is shown not only in the score but throughout the statistics, and while the Tigers could easily have won by several more touchdowns (they lost the ball three times on fumbles inside the 20-yard line) there also were anxious moments, particularly early in the third quarter when McKinley moved the ball deep into Tiger territory, only to lose it on the 22 when Tom Zeller pounced on Sam Parks’ fumble. It was one of two times the red and black were able to penetrate the danger zone.

The other was in the final period when Lou Mariano uncorked the most brilliant run of the game as he traveled some 100 yards in moving forward 41, ran out of steam and out of bounds on the Tigers 29.

Bill Stoner ended that threat on the next play when he made a brilliant interception of George Ramsayer’s pass on the 18. These two maneuvers accounted for 83 yards of Canton’s 165 net yardage.

The Tigers on the other hand rolled up 432 net yards, all but 54 through rushing. The 54 were made by the completion of two of 11 forward passes. McKinley made all but four of its yards by rushing, completing only one of nine passes for four yards. First downs were 14 to 7 in Massillon’s favor.
* * *
THE GAME ran true to form, and Canton’s hopes of overcoming Massillon power with spirit failed. The Bulldogs though still fighting as the game ended, were as badly a beaten team as ever limped off the field in a Massillon-Canton engagement.

With many of them called upon to play defensive and offensive football in contrast to the two-platoon system used by the Tigers, hardly a play was run off the last seven minutes without time being taken out for one or more exhausted McKinley players. Two of them, Ronald Wilds, who played a great game and who was virtually walking on his knees throughout the second half, and Chuck Gelal were taken to Mercy hospital Canton after the game for observation but were found not to be seriously hurt.

It was Wilds who caused the Tigers most of their trouble. They never knew where he would be – over the center or off to the side and as a result were unable to trap him successfully. Because of his wandering tactics he messed up many a Tiger play. After the game Coach Chuck Mather paid him the tribute of being among the best linemen the Tigers have faced all season.
* * *
THE LOCAL gridders escaped without a serious injury – in fact they haven’t had one all season – and it was their gratitude for this, that before they began celebrating the fruits of victory, they locked themselves in their squad room and before Coach Mather or assistants knew what was going on, were on their knees with one of their number, Ray Lane, leading them in a prayer of Thanksgiving. Voluntary, unrehearsed and coming from the heart, it goes down as a red letter page in their championship history.

You can name your own individual starts. We’ll take both platoons as our champions and not single out anyone for special honors. Fred Waikem, Bob Howe, Lane and Ernie Russell made the touchdowns. Waikem two of them, but without the assistance of the big Tiger line, the blocking of their teammates and the ability of the defensive platoon to throw back McKinley’s challenge to gain ground, the glories of victory might not have been attained.

Every player made his contribution to seeing that the Tigers won the title. Tom Zeller flopped on a couple of Canton fumbles at the right time, Stoner and Bob Khoenle pulled down Bulldog passes to regain the ball for the Tigers, Jerry Krisher booted three points from placement after touchdown, Wilfred Brenner caught one pass and Russell another with Fred Close doing the pitching as well as handling the ball like a magician from his
T-quarterback position. Frank Gibson, Glenn Tunning, Jim Reichenbach, Jim Schumacher and Cliff Streeter beat down the McKinley line time and again to open touchdown avenues for the ball carriers, and always there was that fine defensive line of Allen Murray, Jim Geiser, Rudy Grunder, Dick Woolbert, Tom Zeller, and Jack Strobel to smash the charge of the Bulldogs so that the line backers Chuck Vliet, Joe Gleason and Lane could lower the boom with head-on tackles. There are three line backers Coach Mather and Elwood Kammer, his secretary of defense, wouldn’t trade for any other three boys in the state.
* * *
THE BRUNT of the ball carrying was shared by Howe, Russell and Waikem. Big Bob lugged it 21 times for a net of 126 yards, while Russell and Waikem each had it 13 times for net gains of 139 and 100 yards respectively.

Mariano’s long run of 41 yards gave him the edge over parks in the ball carrying department for the Bulldogs. Each carried 17 times, Mariano gaining 83 net yards and Parks 45. Leuby Popoff plunged for 33 in six carries.

Seldom has a Massillon-Canton game been played under a more favorable setting. Sunshine and a temperature that was not too cold made it pleasant for both fans and teams.

Only a strong breeze interfered with the game, passers having difficulty throwing against it and receivers misjudging the carry of the ball as it rode the wind right out of reach of their outstretched arms.
* * *
THE TIGERS had set as their point objective – to beat McKinley by a greater score than any other Massillon team. They succeeded by a point but failed by two points from reaching the greatest point difference of 35, set by the Canton McKinley team of 1942 which shellacked the Tigers 35-0.

The Massillon team the following year, 1943 was undefeated and untied and this season is the first perfect one since that time. The 1945 eleven was undefeated, but was tied five times.

Ever since he began coaching at Brilliant in 1937, Chuck Mather has never had a perfect season. He has been undefeated on several occasions but always there was a tie to spoil the mark of perfection. He wound up with a perfect record at Leetonia one year, but stuck his neck out in a post-season game with Salem which ended in a tie.
* * *
THE TIGERS had hoped to score a touchdown the first time they got the ball against the Bulldogs but failed to do so and had to await a second chance. Then they marched 68 yards for the marker and crossed the Bulldog goal after seven minutes and 36 seconds of the first period had expired.

They score again in the second quarter after Zeller covered a Canton fumble on the Bulldog 39, and wound up the game in grand fashion by pushing over three T.D.’s in the final period on drives of 42 yards, 47 yards and 71 yards.

Seldom have seen a ballgame in which the ball was lost so many times on fumbles. The Tigers fumbled four times and lost the ball on three of them, while Canton lost the ball on all of its five fumbles. In other words one of nine fumbles made by the two teams was recovered and that by Massillon.
* * *
UNFORTUNATELY the game got a bit rough in the last period which resulted in two players being ejected by the officials. Had the officials asserted their authority earlier they might have prevented some of the punches that preceded the expulsion.

The hardest any ball carrier hit a player here this season occurred late in the game when Bob Howe ran over Mariano. The latter gamely picked himself off the ground shaken but uninjured.

The Tigers lost the toss and McKinley elected to receive. The Bulldogs gained nine yards and advanced the ball to the 28 in three attempts from which spot Ramsayer punted to Stoner who caught the ball on the 50 but was dropped in his tracks. Waikem went for two yards and Howe 11 for a first down on the 37. McKinley drew an offside penalty, putting the ball on the 32. Russell added a yard. Two passes went for naught and Howe stumbled and lost a yard.

Canton took over the ball on its 32, Mariano and Parks gained eight yards on three attempts and Stoner returned Ramsayer’s punt two yards to his 32. The Tigers broke Howe loose for a 45-yard run. Out in the clear, he was caught in a diving, desperation tackle by Parks who managed to snag one heel, enough to throw Howe off balance on the 23. Howe went for six more to move the ball to the 17. Close picked up a Tiger fumble, eluded two Bulldog tacklers, then sped around left end for a first down on the seven. Howe put it on the three and Waikem went the last three on a quick opener. Krisher’s attempted kick was wide of the uprights and the Tigers led 6-0.
* * *
NEITHER TEAM was able to gain an appreciable amount of ground in the remainder of the first period and in the first half of the second quarter until Zeller pounced on Parks’ fumble on the Bulldog 39. Howe and Russell gained but three yards in two attempts and the Tigers drew a five-yard penalty after Waikem had gone for what would have been a first down. He struck right back, however and in two plays took the leather to the 27. Close was tossed for a loss of three but Waikem was running hard and picked up 13 for a first down on the 17. He went for another eight to the nine and Howe exploded through his left guard from that point for the touchdown to give the Tigers a 13-0 lead.

The Tigers made two more bids for touchdowns in the same period. After Khoenle had gotten the ball for the Tigers by intercepting a McKinley pass, Waikem missed a first down by inches on the 19 and Canton took over.

The longest pass of the game, a 45-yard peg to Russell produced a first down on the 16 but Waikem fumbled on third down and the Bulldogs covered the ball on their 14 to end the threat.

The Tigers received at the start of the second half and got seven yards over the midfield stripe before stopped by Canton which forced Reichenbach to punt. He got off a good kick but it bounced back 15 yards to the McKinley 34.

The McKinley offense, which gained but one first down the first half, flashed for the first time during the afternoon and the Canton stands had good reason to shout with joy. It was Mariano for 11 yards, Parks for 12, Mariano and Parks for a first down on the Tiger 29. Mariano for four more and then a fumble by Parks that the Tigers covered on their own 22. The fumble was one of many bad breaks received by the Bulldogs throughout the day. It stopped what looked like a sure touchdown drive.
* * *
THE TEAMS took turns punting and fumbling the rest of the period. Zeller covered one Canton fumble on the Bulldog 22, but the Tigers obliged when Howe fumbled on the 13 and Canton covered. On the next to the last play of the quarter Stoner covered Parks’ fumble on the Canton 42. Howe reeled off 13 yards to end the period and set the Tigers in forward motion.

Waikem ran for 12 more and a first on the 17 but the drive petered out when Wilds bounded in to cause Close to fumble a hand off, Gelal covering for McKinley. Stopped with a net gain of three yards on as many plays, Ramsayer punted poorly to the Tiger 29. On the first play Russell went through left tackle for a touchdown and Krisher’s extra point made the score 20-0.

The Tigers fourth touchdown came soon after Mariano’s brilliant 41-yard run to the Massillon 29. Almost every Tiger player got a hand on him it seemed, some of them taking two shots at him as he headed for the west sidelines then reversed his field and shook off tacklers until he went out of bounds.

On the next play Ramsayer fired a long pass that Bill Stoner knocked down with one hand and grabbed with the other on the 18. It was mostly Waikem the rest of the way down the field. He ran 27 yards to his 45, and after Russell had moved it over the midfield stripe, too off on a 47-yard jaunt to the Promised Land.

The final touchdown came after Ramsayer had punted out on the Tiger 29. Close’s pass to Brenner gained nine yards and Waikem ambled for nine more. Howe went for four, Russell eight, and a 15-yard penalty inflicted on Canton for unnecessary roughness put the ball on the 26. Howe cut the distance by 19 yards on a jaunt around right end and lane went the last seven through the left side of the line.

State Champions

ENDS – Murray, Zeller, W. Brenner, Streeter, B. Brenner.
TACKLES – Geiser, Grunder, Gibson, Schumacher, Strobel, Mitchell.
GUARDS – Gleason, Woolbert, Tunning Reichenbach, J. Howe.
CENTERS – Krisher, Dowd, Martin.
QUARTERBACKS – Stoner, Close, Francisco.
HALFBACKS – Khoenle, Russell, Waikem, Grier, Lane.
FULLBACKS – Vliet, Howe, Stewart.

ENDS – Killins, Gelal, Zander, Singleterry, Poole.
TACKLES – Dempsey, Ruble, Winderl.
GUARDS – Wilds, Price, Edwards, Shaffer.
CENTER – Dividio.
QUARTERBACKS – Ramsayer, Schrade.
HALFBACKS – Parks, Mariano, Horner, Prophet.
FULLBACKS – Popoff, Cast.

Score by periods:
Massillon 6 7 0 20 33

Mass. Canton
First downs 14 7
Passes attempted 11 9
Passes completed 2 1
Had passes intercepted 1 2
Yards gained passing 54 4
Yards gained rushing 414 181
Total yards gained 464 185
Yards lost 32 20
Net yards gained 432 165
Times punted 4 7
Average punt (yards) 22 28
Yards punts returned by 44 8
Times kicked off 6 1
Average kickoff (yards) 44 35
Yards kickoffs returned by 12 66
Times fumbled 4 5
Lost ball on fumbles 3 5
Times penalized 4 3
Yards penalized 40 25

Jim Reichenbach
Massillon vs. McK - Throwback (Large) History

1948: Massillon 21, Canton McKinley 12

Tigers Beat Bulldogs 21-12 To Win State Championship
Massillon Gridders Outclass Heavy Canton Eleven All The Way


The old adage “ox cannot lick tiger” was proved conclusively again Saturday afternoon in Tiger stadium before a crowd of 22,000 spectators as the Washington high school Tigers defeated the Canton McKinley Bulldogs 21-12 to win the mythical Ohio high school football championship. Today still found Massillonians and students celebrating the fruits of victory.

Hats off to Chuck Mather and staff and their Tiger football players! Battling against tremendous odds in weight they out generaled and out charged the McKinley Bulldogs as they sped to their ninth victory in 10 games, their first victory over Canton since 1943 and their first state championship since that same year.

Program Cover

Rolling to touchdowns in three of the four periods, and narrowly missing a couple of others, the Tigers demonstrated to the spectators their right to claim the state title as they handed the vaunted McKinley team its first loss of the season. The Bulldogs were ranked No. 1 in the Ohio scholastic football poll last week and Massillon No. 2. The order should be reversed this week.

It was asking a lot and it took hearts on the part of the Tiger players to overcome the 15-pound per man weight advantage of the Canton team, but the Massillon gridders played courageous football and dented the anatomies of the Bulldogs as they beat the Cantonians to the charge.

Just for example, little Bill Morrow a 153 pounder was pitted against 200 pound John Kostas and moved him around at will most of the afternoon. And there was Pat Ebbert , 155 pounds, getting a head start on every defensive play, smashing through the center of the Bulldog line from his line-backing position to stack-up McKinley ball carriers.

Booster Club
Rally Tonight

Bob Willison, president of the Tiger Booster club, has called a meeting of all Booster club members for 8 o’clock tonight in the Washington high school auditorium to celebrate the Tigers 21-12 defeat of the McKinley Bulldogs Saturday and the winning of their first state championship since 1943.

Coach Chuck Mather will be present at the meeting and will show motion pictures of the game.

In fact, a couple of pinch-hitters, Ebbert and Irvin Crable were most important cogs in the Tiger victory. Pat went in to fill limping Jack McVey’s shoes on defense and Crable replaced the injured Clarence Johnson at right halfback and roared to all three of the Tigers’ touchdowns.
* * *
BUT YOU couldn’t pick any two guys out of Saturday’s game and say they carved the bacon. Give credit to the whole team, and to Capt. Al Brown, who played his heart out in what was the greatest game of his three years of football, and who fell hysterical on the sidelines when removed in the last minute of the contest. Al and the other seniors wanted to have a victory over Canton McKinley written in the records of their high school athletic careers and they gave their all to accomplish it in their last chance Saturday. That goes for Mike Takacs, Bill Paul, Ben Roderick, Joe Jones, McVey, Jack Houston, Jack Hill, Art James, Eddie Bush, Jim Campbell, Chuck Crone and other seniors who didn’t get into the contest, but who wound up their high school football careers with the defeat of Canton and the winning of a state championship.

No wonder hysteria broke loose in the Tiger dressing room after the game. It began when substitutes at the crack of the final gun streamed from the bench to the playing field to embrace other members of the squad and join them in hoisting Coach Mather to their shoulders and carry him to the dressing room. You could hardly get into the room as fans streamed in – proud fathers to congratulate their sons; Boosters with broad smiles and hoarse voices; old alumni, including many former Tiger players now in college; as well as former Massillon men who are coaching in other cities and who arrange their schedules so that they can be home for the annual Canton-Massillon classic. Signs reading “state champs”, printed in advance, were hoisted immediately in the dressing room to resounding cheers.

Mike Takacs runs the ball

It was an outpouring of spontaneous enthusiasm such as this city hasn’t seen in a long time and a deserving recognition to a great team.
The classy Tiger gridders were into the game up to their necks every minute, but as it turned out, they had the victory all the way. They controlled the ball, rolled up more yards, made more first downs, scored more points, gave Canton McKinley but two scoring opportunities both of which the Bulldogs cashed in on, and they were hammering at the red and black’s goal line all afternoon, narrowly missing two other touchdowns, one by a step and the other by a trip.

As Dave Stewart, who himself coached Washington high to a state championship in 1922, said after the game, “That’s one of the finest Massillon teams it has been my privilege to see.” Dave came over from Sharon, Pa., for the contest.
* * *
MOST OF all the victory was a tribute to the coaching of Chuck Mather and his assistants, Paul Schofer, Carl Schroeder, Lauri Wartiainen, and Dave Putts, who have scouted McKinley every game, who figured out the Bulldog’s weaknesses and how to take advantage of them both on offense and defense.

They met Canton’s vaunted power with a four-man line which looked like a five-man line with Ebbert as a crashing line backer, who got a head start on most every play.

They went through the Bulldog defense through the execution of reverses and trap plays that drew the red and black out of position and permitted ball carriers to get into the secondary time and again.
* * *
THE TIGERS won without the ball carrying services of Clarence Johnson, their leading ground gainer of the season who has averaged almost three more yards per try than McKinley’s John Colceri, who likewise was unable to lug the leather because of injuries. Johnson got in only to kickoff a couple of times and boot the Tigers’ three points from placement.

McKinley undoubtedly would have had more offense with Colceri in the backfield, but whether he would have made any difference in the outcome of the game is a subject for folks to debate the next 12 months of the year.

The breaks of the game were fairly even. The Tigers recovered two McKinley fumbles and intercepted on pass, but the Bulldogs got the biggest break of all when Ben Roderick after leaping high in the air to snare a pass, came down with a foot out of the end zone that cost the Tigers a fourth touchdown.

The local gridders lost what might have been a couple of others when in the second quarter with the ball on the 13-yard line, Crable tripped over Jack Hill’s foot on a statue play and fell with an open field ahead of him on his left flank. Again in the third period he picked up a bounce fumble of his own and ran 25 yards to the McKinley 17 where he was ticked on the leg by a Canton tackler that threw him just enough off balance to cause him to stumble and fall. No one was between him and the goal posts.
* * *
THOUGH STATISTICS were 18 first downs to 11 in the Tigers’ favor and yards gained 317 to the Bulldogs’ 185, the outcome was hanging in the balance until the Tigers’ scored their third touchdown with only one minute and 36 seconds left to play.

The air was tense when the Bulldogs struck back after each Massillon touchdown to match the Tiger’s goal line efforts, and Massillon fans grew uneasy while Canton partisans’ hopes were buoyed as Quarterback John Rogers pitched a fourth-down touchdown pass to End Elijah Lipkins to bring the score to 14-12.

Coach Mather sent in his offensive substitutes but before doing so wrapped a big arm around Capt. Brown. “Al, you gotta hold that ball. Anytime Canton gets it we might lose this game. You gotta go all the way, Al, all the way.”

Here the Tigers demonstrated their greatest courage of the game. Against a suddenly inspired McKinley team they took the kickoff on their own 20 and methodically pounded all the way to their third touchdown. They used up six minutes and 47 seconds in the drive, and crossed the Bulldog goal with only a minute and 36 seconds remaining to be played.

That last touchdown drive was a clear cut demonstration of the championship caliber and determination of the Massillon team.

There were those at the half who thought Bulldog power and weight would surely be a deciding factor before the end of the contest, but in the Tigers final march to points, they actually beat the Cantonians down to their size and appeared the stronger team at the final gun.
* * *
DESPITE the hard play of members of both teams, none was seriously injured. Members of the local eleven came out of the contest in as good a condition as they entered it.

Dick Jacobs took as hard a beating as anyone, and several times was the victim of a pileup that knocked the wind out of him.

Both teams were strictly offensive minded all afternoon and as a result each punted only once. The Bulldogs in their desperation to catch the Tigers were thrown back once on fourth down when they failed to make yardage on the Tiger 39. But on another occasion while back in their own territory and 11 yards needed for a first down, they caught the Tigers napping and fired a long pass that started them on the way to their second touchdown.
* * *
THE TIGERS appeared tense when the game got underway. They won the toss and elected to receive, but the Canton kickoff bounced around through the Massillon team and Capt. Brown fumbled on his first attempt to pick up the ball. When he finally did get it, Canton tacklers were upon him and he was downed by Mariano on the two-yard line.

Massillon folks breathed heavily, but Al on second down got out to his 13 for a first down which at least gave Jacobs some room to punt when the Tigers gained only seven yards. Dick, booting against the wind, got the ball to his 39-yard line where it rolled dead.

Then the Tigers got a break that made up for Al’s fumble of the kickoff. Mariano, on first down fumbled and old reliable Mike Takacs pounced on the ball for the Tigers.

The Tigers launched their first touchdown march. After Brown got but two yards at right end, Hill dropped back and shot a long pass that Ben Roderick took to the Canton 38. Jacobs came right back to circle his right end for another 13 yards and a first down on the Canton 25, McKinley took time out but it did no good, for on the next play Jacobs again wormed through for a first down on the Bulldog 12. Crable got four, but Brown failed to gain. Then the Tigers came up with their double reverse that has thrown other opponents out of position this season. It worked perfectly and Crable, led by a wave of blockers, cut to his left and raced down the sideline for six points. Johnson went into to blast over the extra point.
* * *
THE BULLDOGS took the kickoff and came roaring back for six points themselves. With Mariano and Tony Ranalli doing most of the leather lugging, they started from their 33 and 12 plays later were on the one foot line as the quarter ended.

Came the second period and on the first play, Rogers bucked the ball through center for six points. Ernie Ghezzi tried to kick the extra point but missed and the Tigers led 7-6.

The Massillon gridders took the kickoff and struck back into Bulldog territory. Starting from the 34, Jacobs went for 10 yards and a first on his 44. When two plays gained but a yard, Hill pitched the ball to Jacobs for a first down on the McKinley 44. Brown went through on the next play for another first on the 32 and Jacobs on a trap went on to the 20. Hill lost four yards when a play backfired, but Jacobs went to the 13. With third down coming up and three yards to go, the stage was set perfectly for a statue play. The entire Bulldog team was sucked out of position, but in the handoff, Crable tripped over Hill’s foot and fell for a seven-yard loss. Not discouraged Hill shot a pass to Roderick in the end zone on fourth down that Ben took in a leaping catch, but when he came down his foot was out of the end zone and the Tigers had lost a touchdown.
* * *
McKINLEY took over on the 20 and got by the midfield stripe before Crable intercepted Rogers pass on his own 31. Three plays later the Tigers had a first down on their own 45 and when two plays only gained five yards, Brown passed to Eddie Bush for a first down on the Canton 22. The Tigers thought a double reverse might fool McKinley more than a forward pass in the final seconds but Crable was caught as the half ended.

McKinley received to open the third period, Mariano making a great return of the kickoff and almost getting away to take the ball to the Tiger 48. Three plays gained seven yards and the Bulldogs tried to run the ball on fourth down. The Tigers were equal to the occasion, however and Ranalli was thrown before he could make the necessary yardage.

Taking the ball on their own 39, Crable went for eight yards and Brown made it first down on the Canton 43. Crable dribbled the ball but picked it up and got to the Canton 17 where the safety man barely ticked his foot enough to throw him off balance and he fell with an open field ahead. The Bulldogs threw the Tigers back two yards on the next four plays and took over on the 19. The locals held and forced Mariano to punt. Jacobs caught the ball on the run and made a fine 22-yard return to the Canton 23-yard line. Roderick was stopped without gain, but Crable was turned loose for a touchdown and Johnson kicked the extra point to make the score 14-6.

Canton took the kickoff and assisted by a 15-yard penalty and a 10-yard run by Mariano got to its own 42 where Rogers’ fumble was recovered by the Tigers. On fourth down, Brown got loose for a first down on the Canton 21, but the Tiger attack was stopped again by the Bulldogs who took over on their 24 and began a touchdown drive of their own. They got up to their 44, where they were stopped cold for three downs. Behind by eight points, they gambled on fourth down with 11 yards to go and won. Rogers shot a long pass to Louis Scrimo who got to the Tiger 29. Mariano immediately got loose to the six-yard line and the Tigers put eight men on the line of scrimmage. The Bulldogs failed twice on line plays and a pass was batted down. On fourth down, however, Rogers tossed quickly over the line of scrimmage to Lipkins for the red and black’s second touchdown. Ghezzi again failed to kick the extra point and the Tigers led 14-12.
* * *
EIGHT MINUTES and 23 seconds of the game remained to be played when Mariano kicked off to Massillon. Brown brought the ball back to his 20 and the Tigers began their determined and deliberate 80-yard touchdown march. Crable went for six yards and Jacobs moved for 18 to a first down on his 44. Crable made two and Brown bulled his way to a first on the Bulldog 43. Jacobs got eight yards at center and then piled through for three more and a first on the Canton 32. Crable made eight at left tackle and t hen was freed through center for a first on the McKinley 19. Hill, Crable and Brown carried to another first down on the nine-yard line.

The Massillon captain struck for five more to put the ball on the four-yard line and hit again only to have the ball called back and the Tigers penalized five yards and back to their nine for being offside.

That didn’t stop Brown. Mather had said, “all the way” and that’s the way it was going to be. He smashed through for four yards and on the next play Crable ran his right end for the final touchdown of the game.

Johnson missed his first try for the extra point but Canton was offside so he booted it over in a second attempt to bring the final score to 21-12 with a minute and 36 seconds remaining to be played.

Krisher kicked off to Canton’s Sam Parks who came back to his 31. Rogers tossed to Scrimo for a first down on the 50, but another attempt was grounded and he was hit hard by a flock of Tiger tacklers for a 13-yard loss when he tried another pass. He tossed one to Scrimo on his 42 as the last seconds of the game expired.

State Champs

TACKLES – KRISHER, TAKACS, Jones, Schumacher, A. James, Campbell.
HALFBACKS – JACOBS, CRABLE, Johnson, Bush, Crone.

TACKLES – GHEZZI, O’BROVAC, McCullough, Scrimo, Ripper.

Score by periods:
Massillon 7 0 7 7 21
McKinley 0 6 0 6 12

Massillon – Crable 3.
McKinley – Rogers; Lipkins.

Points after touchdown:
Massillon – Johnson 3 (placekicks).

Referee – Titus Lobach.
Umpire – C.W. rupp.
Head Linesman – Verlin Jenkins.
Field Judge – Ralph Shafer.

Statistics Of The Game
Mass. Canton
First downs 18 11
Passes attempted 6 6
Passes completed 3 3
Had passes intercepted 0 1
Yards gained passing 59 52
Yards gained rushing 285 164
Total yards gained 344 216
Yards lost 37 31
Net yards gained 317 185
Times punted 1 1
Average punt (yards) 20 32
Times kicked off 4 3
Average kickoff (yards) 47 51
Yards punts returned by 22 0
Yards kickoffs returned by 39 70
Times fumbled 1 2
Lost ball on fumble 0 2
Times penalized 3 1
Yards penalized 25 2

Carried Gained Lost Net
Brown 22 105 1 104
Jacobs 11 90 10 80
Crable 17 112 10 102
Hill 3 3 5 -2
Roderick 2 1 0 1
_____ _____ _____ _____
TOTALS 55 311 26 285

Mariano 16 93 1 92
Ranalli 11 46 0 46
Rogers 5 11 0 11
Stosic 4 18 3 15
____ _____ ____ ____
TOTALS 36 168 5 164

Jack Hill