Monday, September 27, 2010

This week in Ross football history....1980


Week six of the 1980 season saw the Pete Moore coached Little Giants at Ely Stadium visiting the Elyria Pioneers. The Little Giants came into the game at 4-1 after losing to top ranked Cleveland Benedictine the previous week 21-12.

Eric Bates got the ball rolling for the Little Giants at the 8:33 mark of the first quarter. Bates sprinted in from 32 yards out to give the purple and white a 6-0 lead. The extra point attempt failed and the scored stayed 6-0 until the 2:41 mark of the first when Ross QB Mike Eicher bulled his way in from 49 yards out. Shawn Simms added the two point conversion and the Little Giants took a 14-0 lead over the Pioneers.

The powerful Ross defense took over and held Elyria until the fourth quarter when the Little Giant offense struck again. Eicher scored from one yard out and added the two point conversion to put Ross up 22-0 with 11:53 to go. Gary Paxson closed out the scoring by hauling in a 3 yard TD pass from Eric Bates. Bates added the two point conversion putting Ross up 30-0.

How powerful was the Little Giant defensive effort in bottling up the Pioneers? The total offensive output by Elyria amounted to 3 first downs and 15 total yards. Ross meantime rolled to 14 first downs and 301 total yards.

The Little Giants win broke a four game losing streak at the hands of the Pioneers and was head coach Moores first win over Elyria. Ross took over sole possesion of first place in the Buckeye Conference and moved the Little Giants to 5-1 on the season.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Sunday morning thoughts... 9/26/10


The first quarter of last nights game was a bit scary. It appeared that the Little Giants would not be able to stop the Preppers offense. When University School went up 10-0 on a field goal on the first play of the second quarter, I was just a little worried.

A key fumble recovery in the endzone by the defense woke the offense up and Ross got rolling. By the end of the half the Little Giants had a 21-10 lead and did not look back. Once again led by Tylor Trautwein, the Ross offense ran over the Prepper defense. Trautwein ran for 187 total yards, including a beautiful 87 yard TD run that capped the nights scoring. Kudos to the coaching staff for making the necessary adjustments last night to turn things around early allowing the Giants to roll.

It was good to see Gabe Tayar get a field goal last night. The young man is a great addition to the program. His kicking, along with the punting of Eric Hogle are excellent.

Fortunately this game with University School was a one time thing. They brought no fans and no band. Saturday night games are interesting, but only during the playoffs. Give me a Friday night game anytime.

Now it is on to Findlay. Last year at this point we were 4-1 and finished 1-4. Things are very much different this season and we really need to go into Donnell Stadium with a head of steam and come out of next Friday night at 5-1. We can do it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Week five in Ross football history....1970


Week five of the 1970 season saw the resurgent Little Giant football program under the guidance of Chuck Shuff taking on the Presidents of Marion Harding at Harmon Stadium. Marion came into the game at 3-1 on the season but 0-1 in the Buckeye Conference after losing a hard fought 34-22 decision to Sandusky the week before. The Little Giants meantime, rolled into the game on the heels of a three game win streak, the longest since 1965. Ross was 3-1 as well, 1-0 in the Buckeye after a 28-14 win the previous week over Mansfield Senior.

Tom Liggins got things going for the purple and white in the first quarter scoring on a two yard run. Bill Burkett ran for the two point PAT and the Little Giants led 8-0. Liggins punched another TD over in the second quarter, this time from six yards out. The PAT failed and the Little Giants led 14-0. That score held up until the third quarter when Harding came back.

The third quarter was all Marion as the Presidents scored twice but failed on both extra point attempts. Roger Chase ran a touchdown in from four yards out to narrow the margin to 14-6. Later in the third Rick Huddle hauled in a 10 yard TD pass from Prexie QB Frank Gifford(I swear that's his name). As the quarter ended the Little Giants clung to a 14-12 lead.

The Little Giants got things rolling again in the final quarter. Sophomore Rob Lytle scored on a 31 yard TD run and Burkett scored the two point PAT putting Ross up 22-12. Fremont wasn't done and neither was Tom Liggins. The talented Little Giants Senior scored on a 20 yard TD run. The extra point was no good and Ross had a 28-12 lead which was also the final score.

Liggins led all ball carriers on the night with 27 carries for 120 yards. The Little Giants as a team finished with 331 total yards to 225 for the Presidents. With the win Ross moved to 2-0 in the Buckeye Conference and 4-1 overall. When the AP poll came out the following Tuesday the Little Giants were ranked 16th, the first time Ross appeared in the poll in several years.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Saturday morning thoughts....9/18/10


Dominating? Punishing? Overwhelming?
Pick any one of those, or all of those and that would be the description of last nights 47-7 Little Giant win over Cleveland Benedictine. From the first quarter when Tyler Wolf hit Greg Brown on an 85 yard TD pass to the runback of a fumble by JJ Moreno in the fourth quarter, Ross was hitting on all cylinders last night.

Once again the determined running of Tylor Trautwein impressed. The young man ran through, over, and carried along, Bengal defenders time and again. His four touchdowns were fun to watch. The running of Trent Stout, and Matt Egbert were big contributions to this win as well.

Tyler Wolf is just a Sophomore folks. That young man had a stellar night. His poise and leadership will only continue to develop. Kudos to Coach Kidwell for his ability to develop good QB's for our program. When all is said and done, Wolf could very well be the best QB to come out of Fremont Ross.

The Little Giant D. WOW. What a difference a week makes. The Ross defense shut Benny down. Miranda, Moreno and company did a tremendous job last night. That Drew Starks pick of a Bengal pass in the second half was well deserved. He nearly had one just a little before that, so when he actually did get the int. it was nice to see, and it snuffed out a Benedictine drive.

If Benedictine thought that the second half was going to be a turnaround for them Tylor Trautwein took care of that with his 92 yard return of the kickoff for a TD. Very nice.

Gabe Tayar missed on two FG attempts. He JUST missed on a 51 yard attempt as the first half ended. His kicking, along with Eric Hogels punting kept Benedictine bottled up in their end of the field most of the game.

I was sitting next to the scouts from Cleveland Central Catholic. The Ironmen host Benedictine next week. The CCC scouts were raving about the Little Giants and I can say that Fremont Ross football recruited several new fans last night as a result. It was enjoyable listening to them rave about the Little Giants.

And how about Bedfords stadium. What a beautiful facility! The only downside was the scoreboard. I had no idea what the clock read the entire game. Behind the visitors side there were deer grazing in a field. The place was very nice.

Our series with Benedictine ends for now. But what a way for it to end. Let's now focus on keeping next weeks opponents from University School at 599 wins. They'll be shooting for win 600 next Saturday night at the Don.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Week four in Ross football history....1970


Week four of the 1970 football season saw the Chuck Shuff coached Little Giants on the road. Ross was at Arlin Stadium in Mansfield to take on a good Tyger team. Mansfield was 2-0-1 on the season and coming into the game after a scoreless tie with Mansfield Madison. The Tygers were ranked in the top 20 in the AP poll. The Little Giants came into the game at 2-1 after a 14-0 win over Toledo Bowsher. Ross was 2-1 for the first time since 1967.

The Little Giants struck first on a 6 yard Tom Liggins TD run. The PAT was no good and Ross had a 6-0 lead which held through the end of that first quarter. The Tygers put the only points of the second quarter on the board on a 1 yard run by Greg Warndorff. Ray Webb punched the two point PAT over and Mansfield took an 8-6 lead in to the locker room at halftime.

In the second half Liggins went back to work for the Little Giants. In his trademark workman-like effort, the Ross back scored on a five yard third quarter TD. He added the two point PAT to put the purple and white up 14-8. That 14-8 score stood until the end of the third quarter.
In the fourth stanza Liggins put Ross up 22-8 on a 3 yard TD run and by scoring the 2 point PAT. Ray Webb wasn't quite finished for his Tygers as he scored on a 12 yard TD run to pull Mansfield to within 22-14. The PAT failed and the Little Giants led by 8. Just as Webb wasn't quite finished, neither was Liggins. The Fremont back scored on a five yard TD run in the fourth to put Ross up 28-14. The PAT failed and that was the final score.

In the battle between Webb and Liggins the Tyger back had 14 carries for 119 yards. Liggins toted the ball 30 times for 85 yards. Liggins also had several key third and fourth down conversions for his Little Giants, keeping drives alive.

Mansfield was hurt by two big personal fouls, one of which allowed the Little Giants to kick off from their own 45. The Little Giants meantime kept their cool and did not suffer from any major penalties.

Mansfield had 287 total yards of offense to 211 for Ross. The Little Giants has a 172-162 edge on the ground while the Tygers had a 125-39 edge through the airways.

The win put Ross at 3-1 on the season. The first time since 1965 that the Little Giants had won three in a row. Mansfield fell to 2-1-1 on the season.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Saturday morning thoughts...9/11/10


Last week at this time I was writing about how well our Little Giants played on both sides of the ball. The offense clicked against Whitmer and the defense held their own against a tough Panther squad. What a difference a week makes. But things like this happen, we'll be ok.

Columbian was just a much more physical team last night. No one expected that after last week, but that may have been the issue. Despite our words to the contrary I believe many of us believed that since we did so well against Whitmer, that we would blow Columbian away. Well someone forgot to tell the Tornadoes about that.

We can't discount the emotion on the other side of the field. Coach Colatruglio had been an assistant for Coach Kidwell at Hopewell-Loudon. You know that was additional incentive for him and his kids in Tiffin as well.

We'll be ok folks, I truly believe that. Our offense is good. Tylor Trautwein is one hell of an athlete and proves it on every play. That kid makes something out of nothing when he carries the ball. And Tyler Wolf is a good QB that is only going to get better. He busted his behind trying to keep us in the game last night. That young man is tough, don't doubt that. And you cannot discount the kicking of Gabe Tayar. That young man quietly is contributing every week.

Yes, we still have worries on the defensive side of the ball. But progress is being made. Are we there yet? No. Will we get there? I believe we will.

Tiffin sure got a great addition to their program with the transfer of young Mr. Golladay from Reynoldsburg. He is fast. Tittle at QB for the Tornadoes did a good job too. He sure has the last name for football to say the least.

Let's put this game behind us and focus on this next Friday night. Another Benedictine on the horizon. The only difference is that this one is in Cleveland. This season is far from over, let's stay focused and positive.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

"I know Fremont Ross"

Recently we had some work done on our home by a contractor. Last evening he stopped by to make sure everything was satisfactory and to pick up the check. As we sat in our living room discussing the work, he spotted my 2010 Fremont Ross football program and his eyes lit up. "That's from Fremont Ross, you're from Fremont?". I proudly told him that of course I'm from Fremont. His response was "I know Fremont Ross!".

I asked the contractor if he was from Fremont and his response was no, he wasn't from Fremont, or from Ohio. He was born and bred in Michigan but "everyone knows about Fremont Ross. It's a good football school". He then went on to list a number of Little Giants with Michigan connections including his favorite college football player of all time, Rob Lytle. He spoke at length about Lytles time as a Wolverine and the enjoyment he got watching the former Little Giant play for the maize and blue. He also talked about Tony Gant and Heisman Trophy winner Charles Woodson.

He knew about the Ross-Sandusky rivalry and asked how the Little Giants were doing this year. "How's that Brown kid doing? You know he is coming up here next year." I promised to keep him filled in on how Ross does this year and how Greg Brown does as well. He asked who we were playing this week and after I told him we got back to a discussion of the work done on our home. As he left he reminded me to keep him updated on the 2010 Little Giants and said, " Beat Tiffin!" which I thought was pretty neat.

Sometimes we forget that Fremont Ross football is not just a local thing. Folks from all over follow the Little Giants. Sometimes they are people you would never expect, like a contractor in Michigan with no ties to Fremont at all.

Let's not let him down tomorrow night....


Monday, September 6, 2010

Week three in Ross football history....1980


Week three of the 1980 season saw the Little Giants welcome the Fighting Irish of Toledo Central Catholic to Harmon Stadium for a non-conference contest. Ross came into the game at 2-0 after wins over Tiffin Columbian and Toledo DeVilbiss. The Irish came in at 1-1.

The Ross defense had a good game in pitching the shutout, allowing Central just 108 total yards, but the Little Giant offense was hampered by 12 penalties for 145 yards.

The two teams battled to a scoreless halftime tie. Ross drew first, and only blood at the 6:13 mark of the third quarter. Little Giant QB Mike Eicher hit Scott Logan with a 76 yard TD pass to put Ross up 6-0. The PAT was no good and that was all the scoring on the night as Coach Pete Moores Giants moved to 3-0 with Lorain Admiral King on the horizon in the Buckeye Conference opener.

The Little Giants had 273 yards of total offense to 108 for the Irish.
Ross had a 161-47 advantage on the ground and 112-61 through the air.

Shawn Simms had two big QB sacks and Brent Foos picked off two Central passes, his fourth and fifth picks of the season.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Saturday morning thoughts....week two edition


...and I could not be happier.

Last nights 22-16 Ross win over Toledo Whitmer was another classic Little Giant-Panther battle. It seems that every time these two programs meet, the game is one to remember. The 2010 edition did not disappoint. An overwhelming majority of fans had tabbed the Panthers to win this game, myself included. Some expected a Whitmer blowout. Well, someone forgot to tell Coach Derek Kidwell and his team about that. The Little Giants were ready and played one of the best games this long time Fremont Ross fan has seen in years...on both sides of the ball.

Make no mistake about it, Whitmer is good. The Panthers are a tough team that have size and speed. Whitmer rolled into the Don after spanking Tiffin Columbian last week 35-6. The Little Giants were ready and matched up with the Panthers just fine.

I kept hearing after last weeks game that the coaching staff "held back" in the win against Start. I wasn't sure if that was really the case or just hype. It wasn't hype. Tyler Wolf had a great game against a big defensive unit. That young mans grit and determination in leading his team last night was admirable. Skyler Refner had a great game and deserved the "Wendys player of the game" award from the guys at WFRO. That catch and run by Marquan McDonald was fun to watch as well. Carter, Miranda and the Little Giant defense had a great game against a good Whitmer offense.

The Senior leadership that some of us talked about in the preseason is clearly evident. Greg Brown, Tylor Trautwein and Co. are doing a great job leading this team. Leading by example, I might add. Two games into the 2010 season it is evident that this years team is different. There seems to be more unity. Gone, at least so far, are the issues that determined the fate of the 2009 team. Let's keep that unity and move forward.

Last nights game was a preview of what life in the Three Rivers Athletic Conference will be like. Tough games against quality opponents before big crowds. What we in Fremont are used to. And we'll fit in with the TRAC just fine, last night proved that.

Now it is on to Frost Kalnow Stadium and a meeting with neighborhood foe Tiffin Columbian. The Tornadoes spanked Mansfield Madison last night 33-0. Tiffin will be ready for us, they always are. I know we'll be ready for them.