Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Week ten in Ross football history...1991


Week 10 of the 1991 season saw the Little Giants host state power Fostoria in the first Great Lakes League meeting between the two teams. The game was also the first between the two old rivals since 1961.

The Redmen roared into the game as the number one team in the state of Ohio in division two and were also a legitimate nationally recognized power. Fostoria was 9-0 overall and 5-0 in the GLL. The Rex Radeloff coached Little Giants came into the game at 5-4 overall and 4-1 league mark. Despite blustery conditions earlier in the day 7,000 roaring fans jammed Harmon Stadium for the game.

In the game, the overpowering Redmen offense outgained the Little Giants 300 yards to just 51. Fostoria ran 73 offensive plays to 38 for the Purple and White. Looking at those numbers you might think that Fostoria head coach Dick Kidwells prediction of his team winning by two TD's was on the spot. But as Lee Corso likes to say...Not so fast!

The Joe Siesel coached Ross defense kept the Little Giants in the contest. Siesel felt that his charges performance was the best in a long time. He credited Doug Siesel, Dan Frederick, and Damon Walker with playing a great game and keying the Ross defensive effort.

Fostoria drew blood first. The Redmen put together a 10 play, 56 yard drive that was capped by a Derek Kidwell to Tony Hammond 20 yard TD pass on a third down and five situation. The PAT was good and the Redmen were up 7-0.

The middle of the contest was a defensive showcase as neither team could crack the endzone. The Little Giants changed that with 10:50 to play in the game. The Ross defense held the Redmen, forcing them to punt. Derek Kidwell was at the 10 yard line to punt but fumbled the ball and the Little Giants recovered it. The purple and white quickly took advantage of the star QB's gift and scored on an Allen Dorsey to Nick Wolf pass for 20 yards into the endzone. The PAT was no good and the Redmen held a slim 7-6 lead.

Fostoria scored the final points of the contest at the end of a 64 yard drive. Tom Bretigam had a key 27 yard run to the Ross one to keep the drive moving. Bretigam put the ball into the endzone on the next play. The PAT was good and with :34 left in the contest the Fostorians were up 14-6.

The Little Giants were unable to mount any kind of challenge with the clock quickly ticking down and the Redmen won the contest. Fostoria went on to win the DII state championship and their talented QB Derek Kidwell was named Ohios Mr. Football.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Week nine in Ross football history.....1981


Week nine of the 1981 season saw the Little Giants host long time rival Findlay in a Buckeye Conference game at Harmon Stadium. Ross came into the game with slim hopes for another Buckeye Conference title. The Little Giants were 3-1 in the Buckeye and 6-2 overall.

Findlay got a couple of Buckeye Conference records during the game but the Little Giants got the numbers that counted, a 29-7 win. Findlay QB Bruce Porter was 24 of 34 for 228 yards for the night. That performace gave the Trojan signal called a BC record 1,511 yards for the season breaking the old record also held by a Trojan, Cliff Hite who had 1,475 yards.

Despite the great night by Porter, Little Giant defender Ron Thurn had two interceptions of the Trojan QB. In addition to Thurns picks Porter was sacked twice by both Doug Zink and Craig Forgatch for a total of 46 yards in losses.

For Ross, Eric Bates was the leading rusher. Bates toted the ball 17 times for a total of 130 yards. Ross standout QB Tony Gant had two touchdown passes, both to tight end Dan Bollenbacher. Gant also carried the ball 12 times for 57 yards.

Gant hooked up with Bollenbacher on a 35 yard TD pass with 3:07 remaining in the first quarter. Bates got the second Fremont TD. The Little Giant speedster ran 73 yards for a score early in the second quarter. Bo Johnson who carried the ball for a total of 76 yards got the third Ross score on a six yard run.

The win gave the Little Giants a shot at a Buckeye Conference title. Ross would have to face arch-rival Sandusky the following week for a chance at the crown. Sandusky moved to 8-1 overall and 5-0 in the Buckeye on this night, beating Lorain Admiral King 28-14.

Monday, October 10, 2011

This week in Ross football history....week eight


Week eight of the 1951 season saw the unbeaten Little Giants of head coach Mal Mackey make the trip to Elyria to battle the Pioneers. A standing room only crowd of 8,000 fans jammed Ely Stadium for the contest despite the weather conditions which featured an early season snow that piled up several inches in depth on the field.

The weather did not hinder the Fremonters who were led by Little Giant legends Bob Biggs, John Lewis and Jerome Surratt. The three along with a band of fellow Little Giants were pumped up and helped the Fremonters extend their winning streak to 12 games.

Ross scored first taking a 6-0 lead with a little over three minute left in the first quarter. John Lewis scored on a seven yard run. The Big Thunder score came at the end of a 54 yard drive. The drive was started when Biggs blocked a Pioneer punt which the Little Giants recovered at their 46.

Elyria bounced back and took a 7-6 lead. The score came as the result of a Ross miscue. A bad snap from center caused the ball to skid off the fingers of Ross punter Whitcomb. He chased the ball back to the Ross right and booted it but it wound up at the Little Giants 28 yard line. Bill Hopkins scored a few plays later for the Pioneers on a 2 yard run. The PAT was good and the Lorain Countians led 7-6.

Ross scored again with less than a minute left in the half. Big Thunder scored on a five yard run. The PAT was no good and the Little Giants took a 12-7 lead into the locker room.

Second half scores by Ross were Little Thunder on a one yard run. The two point PAT was good and the purple and white were up 20-7. The final Ross TD was on a 68 yard run by John Lewis. The PAT was no good and the Little Giants were up 26-7.

For the night Jerome Surratt ran for 162 yards and John Lewis added 141. The defense led by Biggs held the Pioneers at bay.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Week seven in Ross football history....1961


Week seven of the 1961 football season saw head coach Mal Mackey and his Little Giants make the road trip to Lorain to take on the Steelmen of Lorain Senior at George Daniel Stadium. The state-ranked Little Giants had their hands full with the Gold and Brown Steelmen before winning 20-14. Mackey felt his charges were looking ahead to a league-title showdown the following week with then-powerful Marion Harding.

Junior back Jack Ziemke and Senior quarterback Guy Nufer led the purple and white to a 20-8 lead over Lorain in the first two quarters. Ziemke had a 53 yard run in the first quarter to put the Little Giants in business at the Steelmen 26. The Ross junior put the ball in the endzone from four yards out six plays later. The two point PAT was good and the Fremonters led 8-0 with 4:01 left in the first quarter.

Lorain looked as though they would strike back with a drive deep into Little Giant territory. The Steelmen bulled their way to the Ross 18 yard line. The key play in the drive was a 50 yard pass from QB Chick Breeden to Dave Van Tresca. The Steelers pushed the ball to the Ross 12 where Little Giant defender Jay Mackey snuffed out the threat by falling on a Lorain fumble.

The next Little Giant drive was 88 yards that started in the first quarter and rolled on into the second. The key plays in the drive were a 15 yard Nufer pass to end Russ Sale and a 42 yard Ziemke TD run to put the purple and white up 14-0.

The Steelers got on the board quickly after that when Breeden took the Jerome Brudzinski kickoff back 81 yards for a TD. The two point PAT was good and Lorain trailed 14-8.

Ross answered the Steeler score with a 70 yard drive that was capped by Larry Kelly bulling his way over from the four. The PAT was no good and the Little Giants went into the locker room at the half up 20-8.

The Steelmen controlled the game in the second half with the highlight being a 75 yard drive. The drive was capped by a Fred Wilson score from within the one on a fourth down play. The PAT was no good and Ross led 20-14.

For the night Ziemke had 191 yards on 19 carries. The win put the Little Giants in line to win their first Buckeye Conference crown since 1957. Ross was 4-0 in the league and 6-1 overall. The Little Giant would face Marion Harding the following week for the BC crown.