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Hoover 27 - Massillon Perry 10

October 1, 2021 

Hoover football turns it on in second half, rolls past Perry for fourth straight win

Josh Weir, Canton Repository


NORTH CANTON — Ninety-four years on this planet haven’t dulled Gordon Knisely’s coaching eyes.

As the North Canton icon offered Hoover football coach Brian Baum a congratulatory handshake in the wake of a 27-10 win Friday night against Perry, Knisely observed, “I wasn’t so sure in that first half.”

Baum nodded and responded, “You and me both.”

The Vikings left no doubt after halftime.

Hoover scored the final 27 points over the final 25 minutes-and-change to turn a 10-0 deficit into their fourth straight win.

A homecoming crowd of roughly 6,000 at Memorial Stadium watched the Vikings steadily take control at the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. Junior Luke Roach cracked 100 yards rushing for the seventh straight game and senior kicker Robby Smart booted two field goals — the first of them a school-record 49-yarder that gave the Vikings some much-needed life right before the half.

Hoover improved to 5-2 overall and 3-0 in the Federal League despite missing senior Zander Bugara, its top receiver, a dangerous return man and a very good defensive back.

As for the defense, the Vikings didn’t get their fourth straight shutout, but they certainly left a mark.

“In the first half, we were there, but we weren’t making plays,”  Baum said. “We were hesitant. Everything they do is full throttle. We hesitated a little bit at the ‘backer spot. We kind of drifted at the D-end spots. You can’t do that against them.”

Hoover senior cornerback Daelen Campbell intercepted two Carson Basham passes in the second half. The first was a tough, over-the-shoulder pick on a deep ball that was deflected a bit before Campbell controlled it.

The second was a floating pass that Campbell returned 27 yards for a touchdown to seal the win midway through the fourth quarter.

Campbell, a lockdown defender on the basketball court who came out for football this year, didn’t expect to get his first two interceptions of the season against a wing-T team.

“Shoot, it was a surprise to me,” Campbell said. “But when I see the ball in the air, I’ve got to make a play on it.”

Roach ran for 133 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries. He used his quick feet and good balance to pick through the big holes the big fellas in front of him opened.

“Our offensive line really stepped up big,” Roach said. “I can’t do it without them. It’s nice to have leadership like Alec Lehman and Zach Ohler up there.”

Hoover totaled 283 yards of offense, with 200 of that coming on the ground. Despite Hoover being very one dimensional, Perry couldn’t stop the run-heavy Vikings.

“We didn’t come out in the first half ready to go,” Baum said of his offensive line. “In the second half, they were challenged and they met that challenge.”

Hoover sophomore quarterback Carson Dyrlund shook off an ugly first-half interception in the red zone to hit on two big pass plays in the second half.

Dyrlund found sophomore Mason Ashby on a wide receiver screen late in the third quarter and Ashby jetted down the right sideline for a 34-yard TD that gave Hoover its first lead of the night at 13-10.

“Ashby is so quick. He’s like Bugara,” Baum said. “And DJ Reed did an awesome job blocking. He moved that guy right out of the way.”

Hoover faced a third-and-12 near midfield on its next possession. Dyrlund found H-back Mike Shimek over the middle for 23 yards.

Roach later punched in a 4-yard TD run to put Hoover up 20-10 with 8:04 left.

“If you’re going to load the box, we have the dudes to throw to and Carson can get it there,” Baum said.

Dyrlund added 58 yards on 12 carries.

Hoover’s three-game shutout streak ended when Basham connected on a 36-yard field goal midway through the first quarter. Samuel Thompson’s 64-yard run set up the scoring opportunity.

The Panthers were on the move again when Basham found Thompson running down the middle of the field wide open for a 44-yard TD on the first play of the second quarter.

But that would be it for the Panthers, who only had the ball for a little more than 19 minutes Friday. Junior De’Andre Church, the league’s second-leading rusher, was limited to 14 yards on seven carries.

Perry head coach Zach Slates declined to comment after the game.


Perry – 3 – 7 – 0 – 0 — 10 

Hoover – 0 – 3 – 10 – 14 — 27 

First quarter 

P—Basham FG 36, 5:06 

Second quarter 

P—Thompson 44 pass from Basham (Basham kick), 11:51 

H—R.Smart FG 49, 1:13 

Third quarter 

H—R.Smart FG 36, 8:02 

H—Ashby 34 pass from Dyrlund (R.Smart kick), 2:23 

Fourth quarter 

H—L.Roach 4 run (R.Smart kick), 8:04 

H—Campbell 27 interception return (R.Smart kick), 6:16 


                     PER     —     HOO 

First downs: 5     —     17 

Rushes-Yds: 24-96     —     45-200 

Passing Yds: 63     —     83 

Comp-Att-Int: 4-9-2     —     5-9-1 

Punts-Avg.:  4-45.8     —     3-44.0 

Fumbles-Lost: 0-0     —     0-0 

Penalties-Yds: 5-30     —     4-40 

Time of Poss.:  19:07     —     28:53 


PASSING—Perry, Basham 4-9-63-2. Hoover, Dyrlund 5-9-83-1. 

RUSHING—Perry, 8-81, Church 7-14, Ruiz 1-2, Basham 8-(minus 1). Hoover, L.Roach 25-133, Dyrlund 12-58, Logan 3-13, Baxter 4-2, TEAM 1-(minus 6). 

RECEIVING—Perry, Thompson 3-55, Gill 1-8. Hoover, Ashby 4-60, Shimek 1-23. 

Records: Perry 2-5, 0-3; Hoover 5-2, 3-0. 

Source: Canton Repository