Friday, October 4, 2013
Know Your Opponent: Week 6 - Akron Firestone
Written by: 22times
MassillonProud.com contributing writer
Overcoming the odds
Going into Week 6 of the Ohio High School Football season, we have seen this team overcome some tough odds. After 5 weeks of being tested, the Tigers sit 5-0, and continue to improve. They have passed two early test, of winning on the road, by winning in a couple of the most difficult stadiums to do so in. The Tigers traveled to Warren in week 3 to take on the Raiders, and came home the victor, by a score of 35-14.
Then last week Massillon took the nearly 2 hour drive south, and played in "Death Valley". A stadium where few have tasted victory and many had been sent home wounded and broken. This year was different, though, as the Tigers went into Harding Stadium with the will and determination to come out on the winning side. Even through the challenges and often times suspect calls, Massillon stayed strong, and in the end, the score board read 37-21 in favor of the Mighty Massillon Tigers.
But the road to the post-season is not, and should not, always be easy. You must challenge yourself and be tested, in order to be there in the end. If you want to hold that Championship Trophy high, you must beat the best to be the best. So far, Massillon is proving they are the best on the field. Do they look perfect and flawless? No. Do they look completely battle tested? No. But they are doing what they need to do to get there.
Week 6 may not bring the most potent opponent we have seen this year. Firestone may not be a Division 1 powerhouse, but sometimes along the way, you still need a team where you can take a breath and work on fundamentals for the more vigorous challenger, yet to come.
Through 5 weeks of play, Firestone is a long way off from being any type of a threat this week, but in any sport you should never take any opponent lightly. You must play every down as if its the last. You can never over look a game on a schedule, and this week it will be very important to focus on Firestone. They have gone 0-5 to start the 2013 season, but their largest defeat was by 19 points.
8/29 A GlenOak (3-2) [1:1] L 12-28
9/6 A Copley (3-2) [2:4] L 0-14
9/13 A Stow-Munroe Falls (5-0) [1:1] L 7-21
9/21 A Buchtel (2-3) [3:7] L 0-19
9/28 A Kenmore (1-4) [3:7] L 7-14
Massillon needs to stay focused and key on major issues that have plagued us this year so far. We need to work on the passing game on both sides of the ball. Our pass defense is still lacking, especially in the middle. And we need to let Clark air it out this week, to prepare for the road ahead.
The series with Firestone started in 2009, and we have won all four games so far. While it may be in its infant stage compared to other classic rivals the Tigers have, it is still important to take it one game at a time. We must not get too big of an ego or it will be a Firestone that brings us back to Earth.
The rest of Massillon's games, with the exception of week 8, will again be a true test, as to how far the team has gotten. They must continue to play as a team, work together, feed off of others talents and show discipline. The Coaching staff must continue to also grow and get better. It is all a learning process of how a team runs and plays as a whole.
We must all remember that these are 16-18 year old boys, and cheer them on no matter the circumstance. Their level of play, will feed off the intensity of the crowd. Come out and support the team, even in games where you know the potential outcome. They still need you!!
To date, Massillon sits 3rd in the Division 2 Region 4 computer points rankings. Here is a look at the Top 8 through 5 weeks:
1 5-0 710 Medina Highland 12.7500 31.0 65.5 100
2 5-0 150 Avon Avon 12.2500 30.5 61.5 100
3 5-0 1624 Massillon Massillon Washington 11.6500 30.0 56.5 100
4 5-0 1116 Macedonia Nordonia 11.3000 30.0 53.0 100
5 5-0 528 Akron Ellet 10.4000 27.5 49.0 100
6 4-1 152 Avon Lake Avon Lake 9.6500 25.5 45.5 100
7 4-1 1350 Toledo Toledo St Francis DeSales 8.7500 23.5 40.5 100
8 3-2 1248 Perrysburg Perrysburg 7.3500 17.0 39.5 100
Here is a look at our schedule with records:
8/29 H Perry (0-5) [1:1] W 35-7
9/5 H GlenOak (3-2) [1:1] W 23-20 3 ot
9/13 A Warren G Harding (3-2) [1:1] W 35-14
9/20 H Lake Catholic (1-4) [3:8] W 35-6
9/27 A Steubenville (4-1) [4:13] W 37-21
10/4 H Firestone (0-5) [2:4]
10/11 A Austintown-Fitch (5-0) [1:1]
10/18 H St. John's (ON) (1-2)
10/25 H St Vincent-St Mary (5-0) [3:7]
11/2 A Canton McKinley (5-0) [1:1]
Good Luck Tigers!! Flatten Firestone!!