Canton GlenOak 32 - Hoover 27
October 22, 2010
Dunn deal: GlenOak RB carries Eagles past Hoover
Jim Thomas, Canton Repository
NORTH CANTON Hoover High School’s Memorial Stadium had witnessed this before. The thunder between the tackles. The pitter-patter of quick feet around end.
Friday night, GlenOak junior running back Bri’onte Dunn evoked the memory of the Vikings’ Erick Howard, a two-time Mr. Football, behind the blocking of a stout offensive line and fullback Devin Curren.
Dunn carried the ball a school-record 50 times for 275 yards and four touchdowns in a 32-27 Federal League win over Hoover. Dunn also threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to DaShawn Hall, and the Golden Eagles needed all five scores to hold off a North Canton squad that tried two failed onside-kick attempts in the final 3:10 only to fall just short.
“Give GlenOak credit, they ran the ball down our throats,” Vikings head coach Don Hertler Jr. said. “But our kids played hard. I’m proud of the way we played — we played a lot of young kids — and we kept battling back to make it a game to the end.”
Only, Dunn and GlenOak refused to lose a fifth straight game.
“I just told the offensive line we’ve got to toughen it up if we want to win,” said Dunn, whose 49-yard TD with three minutes left accounted for the winning points. “We wanted to win … 5-5 sounds a lot better than 4-6.”
This was the type of game that both GlenOak (4-5, 2-3) and Hoover (3-6, 1-4) had been losing since starting off 3-1 and 2-1, respectively.
But with the Golden Eagles out of the league race, and Hoover quarterback Austin Appleby out with an injury, both teams started new quarterbacks in Week 9. Junior Christian Manns was under center for GlenOak and sophomore Domenic Iero stepped in for the Vikings — to very different results.
Manns tossed only three passes, all in the first half when GlenOak built a 13-8 lead.
“We didn’t want Christian to have to carry us,” said GlenOak fullback Devin Curren, who gained 37 yards and picked up four first downs. “It was Bri’onte being Bri’onte. That’s what he does.
“He carried us.”
Dunn heaved his touchdown to Hall the first series of the third quarter. It came after senior Bobby Gearhart blocked a Hoover punt, and gave GlenOak a cushion it never relinquished, and could never rest on.
That’s because Hertler asked Iero to carry Hoover, and he responded. The 5-9, 164-pounder completed 19 of 35 passes for 254 yards and four touchdowns. Iero threw second-half touchdowns to Jon Nutt (5 yards), Joey Housos (10) and Ryan Choong (2) to answer Dunn’s pass and two scoring runs.
“Donny’s kids are never going to quit,” GlenOak head coach Scott Garcia said. “Their guys made plays, we didn’t, we had two young corners back there.”
The difference was GlenOak’s offensive line. Tyler Allison, Chris Hafley, Dan Dorman, Steve Mathie and Rico Higgins controlled the front as the Eagles ran it 64 times for 344 yards. Hoover gained only 60 yards rushing.
The key series was a massive 17-play, 73-yard GlenOak drive that took 8:31 off the clock, capped by Dunn’s 5-yard touchdown. That made the score 26-15 with 4:40 left. Still, Hoover wasn’t done.
Iero took Hoover 65 yards in only 1:22, the score a 10-yard bullet to Housos. Iero then needed just 1:16 to answer after Dunn’s 49-yard TD, hitting Choong on a crossing pattern.
But that was it.
“Both teams played young guys, both made mistakes,” Garcia said. “But we both played hard. We came out on top — We’ll take it.”