Tag: Warren Harding

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2020: Massillon 24, Warren Harding 0

Defense swarms as Massillon shuts down Warren Harding

GAME STATS

MASSILLON It’s awfully easy to win a football game when the other team can’t cross midfield. It’s even easier when they don’t score a point.

It may not have been the easiest of Massillon’s 901 all-time wins on Friday night at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium. That said, the 24-0 victory over Warren Harding was made a lot easier by the performance of the Tiger defense throughout.

“We’re used to our offense really setting the tone in every ballgame that we play in,” said Massillon coach Nate Moore, whose 2-1 team will meet 2-1 Benedictine next Friday night. “It just hasn’t been like that necessarily this year. The defense has. The defense has been outstanding all three weeks that we’ve played. Those guys are playing their tails off.”

The Tigers head into next week’s cat fight on a two-game win streak that has been highlights by a pair of glistening defensive efforts. Massillon has posted back-to-back shutout wins for the first time since doing it to Youngstown Woodrow Wilson and, interestingly enough, Warren, in Weeks 7 and 8 of the 2005 season.

For the second week in a row, the Tigers limited a team to less than 50 net yards of offense, including negative rushing yards. Columbus Bishop Sycamore managed just 46 net yards on 43 plays, including minus-26 rushing yards on 23 attempts, in last week’s 35-0 Massillon win.

Warren was only able to muster 49 net yards on 43 plays on Friday night. The Raiders’ 25 rushing yards netted them minus-5 yards.

Their record-setting senior quarterback, Elijah Taylor, was held to just 54 passing yards while completing 8-of-20 passes with one interception. Despite holding all of Warren’s career passing records, he will depart having not even topped 100 passing yards in three of his four games all-time against Massillon.

“It’s everybody doing their job on every play,” Moore said. “When guys do their job, that gives us a chance. When you have guys who can win one-on-one battles, out of 11 guys on the field, if you have nine, 10, 11 guys winning their one-on-one battle, you’re going to be pretty good.”

That defense also set up Massillon, which led 7-0 at halftime, to deliver the second-half haymaker. It turned a Caiden Woullard blocked punt into a 4-yard Raekwon Venson touchdown, then an Isaiah Clark interception into a 28-yard Alex Bauer field goal for a 17-0 lead early in the fourth quarter.

The Tigers’ defensive performance kept Warren in its own territory throughout the game. The Raiders’ 11 possessions, not counting a kneel-down at the end of the first half, never crossed midfield.

The opposite was true for the Tigers’ offense, which finished with 344 net yards on 67 plays. That included 216 passing yards, 209 of those by Zach Catrone, who returned from a one-game absence due to injury.

Catrone completed 21-of-31 passes with a pair of interceptions. It was his 17-yard pass to Martavien Johnson which gave Massillon a 7-0 first-half lead.

“He was wheeling-and-dealing a little bit,” Moore said of Catrone. “‘Taking what the defense was giving him.”

Massillon would have 12 possessions in the game, with the only one not reaching Warren territory the final one of the game. What cost the Tigers a chance to maximize many of those drives were 13 penalties for 145 yards, as well as three turnovers.

Reach Chris at chris.easterling@indeonline.com.

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2019: Massillon 49, Warren Harding 7

Start doesn’t slow down Massillon dominance at Warren
Chris Easterling
Sep 13, 2019 9:49 PM

WARREN It’s never about the start. It’s always about the finish.

Or, more importantly, it’s about the final score.

Massillon found itself in its first deficit of the season after Warren Harding turned a literal bad bounce on a punt eventually into a first-quarter touchdown on Friday night at Mollenkopf Stadium. However, by the time the Tigers went into the locker room for halftime, they had once again established control of things.

By the time Massillon got on the buses to head back to Stark County, it had put together its third consecutive win to open the season, this time a 49-7 victory over Warren Harding at Mollenkopf Stadium.

“We’ve been preparing ourselves for adversity since December, since January,” said senior Preston Hodges, whose 48-yard interception return with 39 seconds left in the half gave Massillon a 28-7 lead. “Since when we were in the offseason working out, grinding. We’re prepared for the adversity to hit us at any point. We just knew we had to bounce back.”

The game was called with 3:12 remaining as lightning began to flash around the stadium. At that point, it was all academic for the Tigers, who take a 3-0 record into next Friday’s home game against Penn-Trafford out of Monroeville, Pa.

All three of Massillon’s wins have been running-clock situations in the fourth quarter. Although it took the Tigers a moment to get up and running that way on Friday night.

“We faced some adversity and came through it,” said Massillon coach Nate Moore, whose team faced a 7-0 deficit after Warren turned a punt recovery into a 35-yard touchdown pass from Eliah Taylor to Ty Artis with 10:10 left in the first quarter. “So, I’m proud of the guys staying true to what got us here and to keep working. I thought we played well.”

Even after the quick Warren score, Massillon still needed to get its footing. However, it would turn to the defense first to get a stop to get the ball rolling.

Warren’s defense then forced a three-and-out on the Tigers’ first offensive possession. The Raiders would take the ball on a 14-play, 38-yard journey to the Massillon 33, but turned the ball over on down there.

That’s when the Tigers would catch fire. They would turn their next three possessions into touchdowns – two Zion Phifer runs and a 9-yard Aidan Longwell-to-Jayden Ballard pass – and a 21-7 lead, while their fourth would reach the Warren 20 before a sack and an incomplete pass on fourth down halted the march.

That proved to be no real problem for Massillon, as Hodges stepped in front of a Warren pass at the Raider 48 and raced all the way to the end zone for a Tiger touchdowns. The point-after kick made it 28-7 Massillon with 39 seconds remaining in the half.

Hodges was part of a Tiger defense which limited Warren to just 27 yards on its final 15 first-half plays. The Raiders would finish the game with 160 yards on 49 plays.

“I’m really proud of the guys,” Moore said of the defense. “I thought all three levels played well. Obviously, we’ll get in there and watch the film and all that stuff, but we feel really proud of the guys and their effort.”

The Tiger offense, meanwhile, found its groove both through the air and on the ground after the initial three-and-out. By the half, Longwell had completed 11-of-18 passes for 162 yards and the one score.

Longwell would finish the game 15-of-20 for 200 yards and two touchdowns, moving him within two scoring passes of the career record. He hit Ballard for a 19-yard touchdown strike to make it 35-7 with 3:31 left in the third quarter.

Ballard had seven catches for 94 yards and two scores.

Meanwhile, after netting one yard on its first two runs, Massillon gained 46 yards on its final 12 carries of the half. Both Phifer, who scored on two of his five first-half carries, and Terrence Keyes shared the duties.

Keyes would gain 63 of his 96 yards on his third-quarter touchdown run which gave Massillon a 42-7 lead. Hodges added 50 yards on just five carries, while Phifer finished with 32 yards on six totes.

Reach Chris at 330-775-1128 or chris.easterling@indeonline.com.

On Twitter: @ceasterlingINDE

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2017: Massillon 31, Warren Harding 21

Massillon runs past Warren Harding for second win

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Game action vs. Warren Harding

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

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

Game action vs. Warren Harding

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

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

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

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

Game action vs. Warren Harding

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

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

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

Game action vs. Warren Harding

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

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

GAME STATS

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2015: Massillon 41, Warren Harding 48

Stopped Short

Chris Easterling
Independent Sports Editor

WARREN Three games into the season, Massillon coach Nate Moore is still waiting for a full four-quarter football game from his team.

The latest example came Friday night at Mollenkopf Stadium. Despite falling into multiple two-score deficits, the Tigers continued to fight back to take a lead at one point. They were also tied two other times in the second half.

The problem for Massillon was that the final counterpunch belonged to Warren Harding, which emerged with a 48-41 win to drop the Tigers to 1-2 on the season.

“We need to put a complete game together,” Moore said after his team saw a last-ditch attempt intercepted in the end zone by Warren with 45 seconds left. “You’ve got to tip your hat to Harding; they’re a good football team. They were the better football team tonight, the scoreboard shows that.”

The scoreboard showed that because Raider quarterback Lynn Bowden almost single-handily put his team on his shoulders in the second half. It was his 20-yard touchdown run with 3:04 remaining that broke a 41-41 tie.

Bowden, who rushed for 212 yards on 13 carries, scored all three Raider second-half touchdowns. One came on a 90-yard kickoff return 14 seconds after the Tigers had forged a 34-34 tie on a Seth Blankenship-to-Todd Fichter touchdown pass with about eight minutes left.

The transfer from Liberty finished with four touchdowns on the night, three rushing. He also threw a 31-yard scoring strike to Juwan Pringle to give Warren a 26-13 halftime lead.

“I would put him in the category of Mario (Manningham) and (Maurice Clarett),” said Warren coach Steve Arnold, whose team is now 3-0. “People who make plays and electrify the crowd.

Whatever adjective you want to use, he’s that. – He’s a fierce, fierce competitor.”

Twice Bowden hurt the Tiger defense by turning a broken play or a cutback into a long touchdown run. His 62-yard run that opened the game’s scoring in the first quarter came on a broken tackle, then a cutback against the grain.

His 63-yard run in the third quarter that gave Warren a 34-27 lead just over a minute after the Tigers had taken a one-point lead came on a broken play where he reversed field in the backfield and outran the defense.

“We knew what we were getting into going in,” Moore said. “He’s a very good player. He hurts us on a lot of broken plays.”

Bowden’s big night overshadowed Keyshawn Watson’s breakout performance at running back for the Tigers. Watson, who had lined up at receiver in the first two games, started at running back and finished with 239 yards on 37 carries.

Watson scored twice. His 1-yard run – plus Brian Corbin’s point-after kick- put Massillon ahead 27-26; his 2-yard run plus the PAT tied the game at 34.

“We thought he was a dynamic player and we needed to put him in the backfield where we could get him more touches on the football,” Moore said.

Massillon had plenty of chances in the game, reaching Warren territory on 11 of 13 possessions. However, only six of those results in scores.

The Tigers also turned the football over four times – including three interceptions – with two of those being turned into Warren touchdowns.

“We had opportunities,” said Moore, whose team travels to meet unbeaten Steubenville next week. “We just have to put a game together. That’s it.”

GAME STATS

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2014: Massillon 46, Warren Harding 24

Massillon overcomes slow start to roll past Warren Harding

Chris Easterling
Chris.Easterling@IndeOnline.com

MASSILLON The start continues to be an issue for Massillon. The finish, though, remains exactly what the Tigers want to see.

For the third game in a row, Massillon found itself slowly coming out of the gates as it welcomed Warren Harding to Paul Brown Tiger Stadium for its home opener. The Tigers found their second gear, though, after falling into an early deficit, and used it to race past the Raiders for a 46-24 win Friday.

The win improves Massillon to 3-0, with Canadian visitor St. John Collegiate paying a visit next Friday.

“It was our home opener, and Massillon, you’re not going to lose your home opener,” said senior Danny Robinson, who had a touchdown run and a team-high four catches.

“We’re not going to come out there and lose to Warren. They’re a great team, and their running back (Keemari Murry) is really good, but we weren’t going to lose our home opener.”

Early on, the momentum certainly favored the visitors. The Raiders used a 82-yard touchdown run by Murray and a field goal after recovering a Tiger fumble to lead 10-0 midway through the first quarter.

Massillon, though, seemed to get angry at that point. And when it got angry, it found a second gear.

The Tigers finished the first half by scoring on its final five possessions. What started with a Andrew David field goal with a minute left in the first quarter ended with a 17-yard Austin Jasinski scoring run with 1:22 remaining in the half.

When it was all said and done, Massillon owned a 29-10 halftime lead.

“We didn’t come out crisp at all offensively,” Massillon coach Jason Hall said. “It took a bit to gather our thoughts. They hit us with a big play.”

The big play was the bulk of Warren’s offense on the night. And Murry was the key to that.

A year after rushing for 201 yards against the Tigers in Warren, Murry gained an even 200 yards on Friday night. Of that, though, 154 yards came on his two touchdown runs – the 82-yarder and a 72-yarder early in the second half that pulled the Raiders to within 29-17.

Quindez Stubbs added a 68-yard scoring run in the fourth quarter for Warren.

Outside of those two touchdown runs, Murry had 46 yards on 15 carries. He had rushed for over 320 yards in the first two games.

“I’ll watch it on film, but I think we just rolled wrong a couple times,” Robinson said. “It’s fixable mistakes. Other than that, I think our defense and our offense played great.”

Once again, that offense featured a heavy dose of J.D. Crabtree running the ball. Crabtree topped the 100-yard plateau for the third straight week, gaining 161 yards on 27 carries and scoring three touchdowns.

But maybe the bigger plus was the way various others stepped up, especially in the passing game. Quarterback Danny Clark had his best night throwing the ball of the season, completing 13 of 16 passes for 203 yards.

Those 13 completions were spread around to seven different receivers, which didn’t even include leading receiver Reggie Rogers, who did not play – along with safety Mike Smith – for disciplinary reasons. Despite that, Todd Fichter caught three passes, while Jasinski grabbed two and James Hendricks, Chase Piatko, Dylan Henderson and Tre’on Vance each caught one.

“Todd, Austin are coming along,” Hall said. “Austin was hurt in the preseason, and this was a great game for him. Starting next week we get our guys back and we keep plugging along.”

GAME STATS

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2013: Massillon 35, Warren Harding 14

Quick strike gives Massillon momentum to down Harding

By CHRIS EASTERLING
Independent sports editor

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

GAME STATS

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2011: Massillon 24, Warren Harding 7

TIGERS ROMP
Massillon Waits on Weather Then Starts Quickly During Win

Chris Easterling
The Independent

MASSILLON The Massillon Tigers waited through a nearly hour-long delay before they could get started with Thursday night’s game against Warren Harding. Once they were able to get under way, they didn’t wait around to jump on the Raiders.

The Tigers scored on their first two possessions in rolling to their sixth straight win, a 24-7 victory over Warren in front of 5,997 rain-soaked fans at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.

“Delays are hard,” Tiger head coach Jason Hall said. “We were getting ready to come out and they come in with a delay. At the end of the day, you have to respond and you have to handle that.”

Massillon will take a 7-1 record into next Friday’s showdown at undefeated Steubenville, the No. 1-ranked team in Division III. The game against Big Red is the first of two consecutive road games to wrap up the regular season for the Tigers, the other being McKinley the following Saturday.

Those two games ultimately will decide Massillon’s playoff hopes. The Tigers were ranked No. 7 in Division I, Region 2 in this week’s computer rankings.

“They’ll respond; they respond to big games,” Hall said. “Steubenville and McKinley are two of the biggest games on our schedule for the tradition and history of these programs playing each other. Our kids will be ready to play next week.”

Before Massillon could think about the critical final two games, it had to tend to business against a Warren team that had just one win coming into the game – and left with the same number of wins as it fell to 1-7. But before the Tigers could take care of the Raiders, they had to wait out a weather delay.

Thursday night’s game was scheduled to kick off at 7:10 p.m. However, lightning delayed the start of the game until almost 8.

Massillon wasted no time in grabbing the momentum once play commenced, as it recovered an onside kick on the opening kickoff. It also forced a turnover on the first play of the initial Raider possession.

Both of those were converted into touchdowns for the Tigers on Kyle Kempt-to-Ernie Baez scoring passes. However, Massillon needed third-and-long conversions in order to get those scores.

On the first Massillon drive, it faced a third-and-13 from the Raider 23. Kempt found Baez on a screen, and Baez raced untouched into the end zone for the score at the 9:51 mark of the first quarter.

After recovering a Raider fumble at the Warren 20, the Tigers found themselves in a third-and 15 situation at the Raider 25. This time, Kempt hit Baez in the right flat, and he once again ran into the end zone for a 14-0 lead at the 8:46 mark of the first quarter.

“They were manning us and playing some cover-4 and really playing off Ernie Baez,” Hall said. “That allowed Ernie to cross the field. We hit him on a middle screen and then a drag route. We were able to convert on those.”

Kempt would finish the game with three touchdown passes, as he added a 30-yard scoring strike to Chris Calhoun on the first drive of the third quarter that made it 24-0 Tigers. Kempt was 14-of-26 for 176 yards on the night.

“The crossing patterns seemed to work,” Hall said. “We hit Chris Calhoun with a deeper crossing pattern later in the game.”

Massillon added a 26-yard field goal by Andrew David in the first half. That came on a drive set up by a partially blocked Warren punt that Ryan Rambo returned 27 yards to the Raider 26.

The Tigers’ 17-0 halftime lead was more than enough against a Raider offense that struggled to get any consistent drives going. At the break, Warren had just 66 total yards – 20 of those coming on its second possession which reached the Tiger 25 – and four first downs.

For the game, the Raiders mustered 214 offensive yards. Warren broke up the shutout bid with
27 seconds left when Jalyn Powell scored on a 10-yard run against Massillon’s reserves.

GAME STATS

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2010: Massillon 6, Warren Harding 20

Warren Harding snaps Tigers’ win streak

By CHRIS EASTERLING
The Independent

WARREN, OH – Much was made in the past week about Massillon’s big win over previously undefeated Steubenville. But head coach Jason Hall cautioned everyone who would listen that the Tigers were facing just as big a rival – if not bigger – this week in Warren Harding.

Hall’s words proved prophetic.

With the Raiders’ Demond Hymes celebrating his 19th birthday with a 348-yard rushing performance, Warren snapped the Tigers’ six-game win streak with a 20-6 victory in front of about 7,500 at Mollenkopf Stadium.

“They came out with a win-or-die attitude and we didn’t,” said Hall, who was engaged in a verbal altercation following the game with a Warren fan on the field. “We really didn’t. At the end of the day, as coaches and players, we have to look ourselves in the mirror. … We definitely didn’t play like we played last week, and we needed to play (like that) to have a chance to win this football game.”

The Tiger coach said his team took a step forward in becoming the type of tough football team he wants to see after last week’s win. Warren, though, was all about testing just how far Massillon’s toughness had come.

And the Raiders found out that it wasn’t nearly as far as the Tigers, now 6-2, had hoped. Warren held a 388-37 edge in rushing and picked up three sacks on defense.

“We’re not a big team, so we have to play physical,” Hall said. “We didn’t play physical football tonight and they did. (Warren) won the battle up front, and we have to do a better job.”

Hymes was the biggest beneficiary of the Raiders’ victory in the trenches. The senior back carried the ball 37 times to reach his career high, topping the 236 he gained two weeks ago against Euclid.

“I was seeing they were blitzing off the outside,” Hymes said. “My line said to cut it up, and that’s what I did. I got into the open field and I only had one safety out there. I just had to shake him.”

Warren scored on its first three drives, often by controlling the line of scrimmage with a massive offensive line.

“That was something we wanted to do,” said Warren coach D.J. Dota, whose team kept its playoff hopes alive at 6-2. “Our guys just went out and established the run. I thought it was something we could do. They believed in that and they accomplished it.”

The Raiders’ 15-play opening ended on a 33-yard Moses Sosa field goal.

On the next possession, Hymes – who had 144 yards on 13 first-quarter carries – picked up a loose ball behind the line of scrimmage and raced 49 yards for the Raider touchdown and a 10-0 lead with 2:47 left in the first quarter.

Sosa’s 37-yard field goal on the fourth play of the second quarter made it 13-0 Warren.

While Warren was turning the number under its side of the scoreboard, the Tigers were grinding their wheels on offense. After a 29-yard Kyle Kempt-to-Jacar Roberson pass on its first play, Massillon would net just 26 yards and one first down on its next 17.

The Tigers finally cracked the scoreboard when Kempt, who completed just 5 of his 17 first-half passes before finishing 19 of 38 for 274 yards, hit Roberson for a sliding 22-yard touchdown on the last play of the half to cut the deficit to 13-6. Roberson, though, was injured on the play and had to be helped to the locker room.

Hall didn’t have an update on Roberson’s injury after the game, other than to confirm it was a leg injury.

That scoring drive was the only time the Tigers capitalized when reaching Warren territory. All four of Massillon’s second-half drives crossed into Raider territory with one ending on a punt, two ending on downs and a third ending on a game-sealing fumble that was returned 49 yards to the Tiger 3 with under 1:30 remaining.

“We didn’t capitalize on anything offensively,” Hall said. “We had a couple of 10-play drives that we didn’t capitalize on.”

GAME STATS

at Mollenkopf Stadium

Massillon 0 6 0 0 6

Warren 10 3 7 0 20

SCORING SUMMARY

W – FG Sosa 33

W- Hymes 49 run (Sosa kick)

W – FG Sosa 37

M – Roberson 22 pass from Kempt (Kick failed)

W – Hymes 1 run (Sosa kick)

Mas WH

First downs 16 16

Rushes-yards 19-37 50-388

Comp-Att-Int 19-38-0 2-10-0

Passing yards 272 14

Fumbles-lost 1-1 2-0

Penalties-yards 7-65 11-90

Records 6-2 6-2

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

Rushing:

Massillon – Taylor 13-59; Winters 3-12.

Warren – Hymes 37-348 2 TDs.

Passing:

Massillon – Kempt 19-38-274 TD.

Warren – Seawood 2-9-14; Powell 0-1-0.

Receiving:

Massillon – Smith 8-144; Roberson 3-73 TD; McCormick 3-23; Olack

3-12; Taylor 1-18; Kreiger 1-0.

Warren – Powell 1-9; May 1-5.

Massillon Tigers Black Letter Logo History

2009: Massillon 39, Warren Harding 21

Tigers get back  on winning track, rout Warren

CHRIS EASTERLING
The Independent

It was home sweet home for the Massillon Tigers. Two games away from the friendly confines of Paul Brown Tiger Stadium had the Tigers limping into Friday night’s home game against rival Warren Harding. Back at home, Massillon went from limping to a full sprint, as it buried its recent skid – as well as the Raiders – in a 39-21 win in front of 6,451 chilled but happy fans.

The performance was a far cry from the back-to-back losses to St. Ignatius and Steubenville, which halted the momentum Massillon had built up in a 5-0 start. But the Tigers regained that momentum with Friday’s rout of the
Raiders to improve to 6-2 entering next week’s final home game against Mentor.

“It’s nice to see our kids smiling,” Tiger coach Jason Hall said. “I thought they responded well. The No. 1 thing is, no matter what, I thought our kids just left it on the line tonight.”

Penalties and miscues were the order of the day in the first quarter. The Tigers had three flags for 30 yards – including a 15-yard personal foul penalty on the opening kickoff – while Warren picked up two of the yellow
hankies for 15 yards in the first 12 minutes.

But as the quarter shifted from the first to the second, the offense – especially for Massillon – shifted from neutral into overdrive. The Tigers scored touchdowns on all three second quarter possessions. That was in
large part to the throwing of Robert Partridge, who completed 6-of-7 passes in the quarter for 94 yards and three scores.

For the game, Partridge finished 17-of-27 for 260 yards with five touchdowns and one late interception.

“I thought Rob responded to command,” Hall said. “He was very vocal today with the team and on the field. He was a great leader emotionally and with big plays, scrambling and doing all the things that makes him a great
quarterback.”

Partridge completed a 32-yard touchdown strike to Devin Smith, who dragged his toes in the end zone before stepped out the back with 10:04 left in the half. The snap was bobbled on the subsequent point-after try, and it
remained 6-0.

The Tiger senior quarterback also threw a 31-yarder to Justin Olack four plays after Warren took a 7-6 lead on Michael Dorsey’s 1-yard run. This time, Massillon converted the PAT, making it a 13-7 Tiger lead with 1:37
remaining until the band show.

Partridge made it 20-7 38 seconds later when he hit Tyler Allman on a post pattern for a 16-yard touchdown. That score was set up when Danny Huhn recovered a Raider fumble caused when Clayton Mattox blew up an exchange in the Raider backfield.

About the only thing to put a damper on the Tigers’ second quarter was the Raiders’ 15-play, 85-yard scoring drive. Warren ran the ball 12 times, gaining 67 yards.

Warren pounded it against the Tigers on the ground to make it 20-14 after a Tiger fumble at their own 39 on the second play of the second half. The Raiders ran the ball six straight times, with Mikhail Seawood running it
in from a yard out with 8:51 left in the third.

The Tigers answered on Partridge’s fourth touchdown pass – and second to Smith – a 13-yarder to cap a nine-play 75-yard drive at the 6:19 mark of the third. The try for two failed, keeping it 26-14 Massillon.

Tyler Miller’s interception at the Tiger 14 served as the catalyst for Massillon’s next scoring drive, which ended on the third Partridge-to Smith touchdown strike, this one a 19-yarder. Another try for two came up short, but the Tiger lead was 32-14 with 3:42 left in the third.

That lead grew to 39-14 with 2:27 left in the third on Alex Winters’ 1- yard run. That score was set up when Bo Grunder recovered a muffed kickoff at the Raider 14.

Warren wouldn’t go quietly, in part because it continued to find creases to run through. Demond Hymes ripped off a 10-yard run on the second play of the fourth quarter to make it 39-21.

GAME STATS

Massillon 39
Warren Harding 21

Warren 00 07 07 07 21
Massillon 00 20 19 00 39

SCORING SUMMARY
M – Smith 32 pass from Partridge (Run failed)
WH – Dorsey 1 run (Sosa kick)
M – Olack 31 pass from Partridge (Geier kick)
M – Allman 16 pass from Partridge (Geier kick)
WH – Seawood 1 run (Sosa kick)
M – Smith 13 pass from Partridge (Pass failed)
M – Smith 19 pass from Partridge (Pass failed)
M – Winters 1 run (Geier kick)
WH – Hymes 10 run (Sosa kick)
WH Mas
First downs 16 21
Rushes-yards 40-190 37-130
Comp-Att-Int 7-21-2 17-27-1
Passing yards 99 260
Fumbles-lost 4-3 2-1
Penalty yards 7-94 7-75
Records 4-3-1 6-2
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Rushing:
Massillon – Winters 18-119 TD; Boykin 7-21.
Warren – Hymes 18-102 TD; Zitnik 7-43; Dorsey 7-20.
Passing:
Massillon – Partridge 17-27-260 5 TDs, INT.
Warren – Miller
7-21-99 INT.
Receiving:
Massillon – Smith 5-81 3 TDs; Grunder 5-62; Pedro 3-49; Olack 2-41.
Warren – Killingsworth 4-82.

History

2008: Massillon 30, Warren Harding 7

Tigers start streak at right time
Massillon improves to 5-3 with first victory at Harding in 22 years

By CHRIS EASTERLING
The Independent

Warren, OH –

The Massillon Tigers couldn’t have picked a better time to put together their first two-game winning streak of the season. And it didn’t hurt that they snapped a 22-year winless drought in the process.

With their playoff hopes riding on just about every game from here on out, the Tigers went into Warren’s Mollenkopf Stadium on Saturday night and emerged with a 30-7 win over the Warren Harding Raiders.

The victory marked the first time this season the Tigers – now 5-3 – have posted consecutive wins. They also won in Mollenkopf Stadium for the first time since 1986.

Massillon arrived in Warren knowing it needed a win to buoy its tenuous playoff position, as it entered the weekend ranked 13th in Division I Region 2. The exact effect the win over the 4-4 Raiders will have on the Tigers’ standing remains to be seen, but it certainly will provide a boost going into huge point games this Friday at 7-2 Mentor and in next week’s season finale against 5-3 McKinley.

“Everybody knew what we had to do,” said Tiger tailback/cornerback J.T. Turner, who rushed for a career-high 213 yards, while also intercepting a pass. “Every game from here on out is a playoff game. We just knew we had to go out here today and play a great game against a great team.”

The Tigers did just that, and did it in all three phases of the game – special teams, offense and defense.

It was Massillon’s special teams which helped stake it to a 10-0 first-quarter lead, thanks to a 30-yard Jeremy Geier field goal and a 62-yard Bo Grunder punt return for a score. Grunder’s punt return may have been the play which completely altered the game, although even Tiger coach Jason Hall admits he would have preferred the junior had gone about it a different way.

“It was a dumb play, actually,” Hall said. “That’s a situation where Bo was being a great athlete. But it was also a situation where it could have turned ugly. I know what Bo’s doing, and obviously it sparked us. I wasn’t mad at him, but I just told him he better never do it again.”

What Grunder did was wait for the punt to roll to a stop at the Tiger 38, then – with two Raider defenders around the ball – pick it up and start running up field. He then cut across the field at about the Warren 40 and raced untouched from there into the end zone for a touchdown with 4:43 left in the first quarter.

“I already knew it was a questionable call,” Grunder said. “It was a gutsy call, but it worked out. I’m glad I did it.”

The offense would take over from there, especially Turner, who surpassed his previous career best of 192 yards he set in Week Five against Garfield. He now has 946 rushing yards on the season with two games remaining.

“My line was creating great holes,” said Turner, who put the game away with fourth-quarter scoring runs of 2 and 38 yards. “It was open, so I took them. My offensive line rewarded me with touchdowns.”

But it wasn’t just running the ball where Turner did his part in lifting the Massillon offense. He also led the team in receiving with three catches for 57 yards – all on a second-quarter drive which gave the Tigers a 17-0 lead on an 8-yard Robert Partridge touchdown run.

Partridge had his best game by far at quarterback, completing 7-of-14 passes for 137 yards. His 58-yard strike to Grunder in the fourth quarter help set up Turner’s 2-yard scoring run.

The Tiger defense, meanwhile, was on top of its game from the very start, swarming the Raiders’ running game on seemingly every carry. Massillon limited Warren to just 48 rushing yards on 36 carries, almost daring the Raiders to put the ball in the air.

“We wanted their quarterback to beat us,” Hall said. “They really like to run the ball with the two athletes they have (Mike Dorsey and Aunre’ Davis). They’re good athletes, and we knew that coming in. Obviously we wanted to try to make them one-dimensional. To be honest with you, they made some plays passing. … But still, all in all, I thought we did a good job of not letting them really be consistent.”

Warren had few scoring opportunities, advancing inside the Tiger 30 just twice all evening. The Raiders reached the Massillon 19 in the first half, but was turned away on downs.

The Raiders did break into the scoring column with 7:30 remaining when Davis hit Sergio Allen in the end zone for a 25-yard touchdown on a fourth-and-17 play. That momentarily cut the deficit to 17-7, although Massillon would score on its next two possessions to put the game away.

GAME STATS

Massillon 30,
Warren Harding 7
at Mollenkopf Stadium

Massillon 10 7 0 13 30
Warren Harding 0 0 0 7 7

SCORING SUMMARY
M – Geier 30 FG
M – Grunder 62 punt return (Geier kick)
M – Partridge 8 run (Geier kick)
WH – Allen 25 pass from Davis (Montecalvo kick)
M – Turner 2 run (Kick failed)
M – Turner 38 run (Geier kick)

Mas WH
First down 15 12
Rushes-yards 32-235 36-48
Comp-att.-int. 7-14-0 15-29-1
Passing yards 137 155
Fumbles-lost 0-0 0-0
Penalty yards 8-60 6-39

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Rushing

Massillon:

Turner 20-213 2 TDs;

Grunder 1-13;

Partridge 4-11 TD;

Nalbach 2-5.

Warren Harding:

Dorsey 14-30;

Hymes 7-19;

Penman 2-6;

Taylor 1-2.

Passing

Massillon:

Partridge 7-14-137.

Warren Harding:

Davis 15-29-155 TD. INT.

Receiving

Massillon:

Turner 3-57;

Grunder 1-58;

Zimmerman 1-14;

Adkins 1-5.

Warren Harding:

Williamson 7-66;

Bruner 2-35;

Bland 2-265;

Allen 1-15 TD.

Records:

Massillon 5-3;

Warren Harding 4-4.