Canton McKinley 42 - Hoover 9
September 23, 2022
McKinley beats Hoover 42 – 9
Mike Popovich, Canton Repository
CANTON — All is not lost when things get tough.
Just ask the McKinley High School football team.
Two weeks ago, the Bulldogs were staring at an uncharacteristic 0-4 start. There was one thing in their favor, though.
What a difference time, a little patience and a couple of big wins make.
McKinley’s 42-9 victory over Hoover on Friday was just as impressive and important as last week’s 51-19 win at Green. After going a month without a win at one point, the Bulldogs have a shot to grab a share of the Federal League lead next week at unbeaten Lake.
“We just stay the course,” McKinley head coach Antonio Hall said. “We saw we were getting better every week. We saw what we had to clean up and we made strides toward that. Now we’re starting to play some high-efficient football.”
Nino Hill ran for 150 yards and four touchdowns, Treyton Mackey scored a touchdown and Da’Lyn Shelton returned a kickoff 85 yards for a TD for the Bulldogs. The McKinley defense also did its part by forcing three turnovers.
“You watch film and you see they’re getting better each week,” Hoover head coach Brian Baum said. “They did some real positive things tonight in the run game.
“We shot ourselves in the foot with turnovers. We didn’t tackle well, and our guys are better than that. But you know what? That goes to their blocking, their line and their running back. He’s a good back. He can do some things.”
There are big reasons why you may notice an extra spring in Hill’s step.
A 6-foot, 185-pound sophomore, Hill was recently granted an exemption by the Ohio High School Athletic Association on its transfer rule. Without the exemption, Hill, who transferred from Alliance, would have played his final game of the season last week.
“It was a big relief, man,” Hill said. “Big time. … I’m so excited.”
Hill has been a force the past few weeks. He also rushed for 135 yards in the win over Green, 177 yards against Perry and 206 yards against Dublin Coffman.
“A big shout out to my linemen,” Hill said. “All of them. They’re giving me big holes.”
McKinley’s defense has been a big factor in getting the season back on track.
After allowing 34.5 points a game during the losing streak, the Bulldogs have given up a total of 28 the last two weeks. They held Hoover (4-2, 2-1) to a Carson Dyrlund touchdown pass to Zach Braucher and a Jeremy Kish field goal.
Dior Garner and Cynceir McNeal made fumble recoveries for McKinley. Alex Vazquez had an interception.
“The defense has been playing lights out,” Hall said. “A new scheme, a new system, new wrinkles … we knew it was going to take some time, especially in a blitzing defense, for guys to jell and be in the right spots.
“The first few weeks were growing pains. Now they’re starting to trust the system and understand the system. They’re starting to have some success with it.”
After navigating some rough waters, all of McKinley’s units are having success.
“We’ve been locked in the last few weeks,” Hill said. “We have something to prove.”
Hoover – 3 – 6 – 0 – 0 — 9
McKinley – 14 – 21 – 7 – 0 — 42
H—FG Kish 31
M—Shelton 85 kickoff return (Hernandez kick)
M—Hill 10 run (Hernandez kick)
M—Mackey 1 run (Hernandez kick)
M—Hill 28 run (Hernandez kick)
H—Braucher 18 pass from Dyrlund (Pass failed)
M—Hill 12 run (Hernandez kick)
M—Hill 5 run (Hernandez kick)
HOO — McK
First downs — 15 — 17
Rushes-Yards — 28-84 — 34-278
Comp-Att-Int — 13-22-1 — 3-6-0
Passing Yards — 164 — 22
Fumbles-Lost — 2-2 — 1-0
Penalties-Yards — 3-20 — 2-10
Total yards — 248 — 300
Records — 4-2, 1-1 — 2-4, 2-1
Source: Canton Repository