MASSILLON — In its first trip to the state championship game, New Bremen shut out Warren John F. Kennedy, 31-0, Friday for the Division VII state title at Paul Brown Tiger Stadium.
Prior to this season, New Bremen (10-2) had four playoff wins in school history, but the Cardinals won six playoff games this fall, which included wins over top-ranked and defending state champion Maria Stein Marion Local in a regional final and No. 4-ranked Lima Central Catholic in the state semifinal.
The state title is the 36th football championship for the Midwest Athletic Conference, the most of any conference in OHSAA history. It is the 137th state title overall for the MAC.
JFK (9-3) had a big advantage in time of possession (29:22 to 18:38), but the Eagles lost two fumbles and gave up a punt return for a touchdown.
Neither team put up big offensive numbers. New Bremen totaled 247 yards of offense on 166 yards rushing and 81 yards passing. The Cardinals held JFK to 133 yards and had three quarterback sacks.
New Bremen sophomore Hunter Schaefer rushed for 101 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries. After a scoreless first quarter, Schaefer’s scoring run came from 39 yards out with 8:19 left in the first half that gave the Cardinals a 7-0 lead that would remain the same at halftime.
New Bremen broke it open in the third quarter when senior quarterback Mitchell Hays had a one-yard TD run with 9:09 left, junior Owen Gabel kicked a 20-yard field goal at 6:02 and sophomore David Homan returned a punt 45 yards for a score with 1:44 remaining that put the Cardinals up 24-0. Homan caught a 19-yard pass from Hayes with 10:49 left in the fourth quarter to finish the scoring.
Hayes was 5-for-6 passes for 81 yards. He also rushed for 60 yards on 18 carried.
JFK quarterback Cam Hollobaugh was 8-for-15 passing for 72 yards. The Eagles take home their fourth state runner-up trophy to go along with state titles in 1991 and 2016.
AKRON HOBAN 35,
MASS. WASHINGTON 6
MASSILLON — In Friday evening’s Division II state championship game, Akron Archbishop Hoban rolled past Massillon Washington 35-6 to claim the program’s fifth state title in the last six seasons.
The Knights (11-0) used a stingy defense and had a balanced 350 yards of offense (180 rushing, 170 passing) to claim the win. Hoban outscored Massillon Washington 21-0 in the second half and held the Tigers (10-2) to just 136 total yards of offense and forced a pair of turnovers.
Hoban running back Victor Dawson rushed for 145 yards on 21 carries while QB Shane Hamm was 9-of-10 passing for 172 yards and four touchdowns, two to Kharion Davis.
Ham also rushed eight times for seven total yards and scored a touchdown.
A 16-yard touchdown pass from Zach Catrone to Caiden Woullard pulled Massillon Washington to within one score with 21 seconds left in the first half at 14-6 but 3:12 into the second half, Hamm found Davis for a 62-yard touchdown to put Hoban back up by two scores.