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Tigers see themselves in Mooney

Ironton and Mooney may have never met on the gridiron but that will change Saturday night in Zanesville as they will play to decide one of the Division IV semifinal games.

Wednesday, November 24, 1999

Ironton and Mooney may have never met on the gridiron but that will change Saturday night in Zanesville as they will play to decide one of the Division IV semifinal games.

Though the teams have never met, Ironton coach Bob Lutz said their styles are similar.

"They will remind us a little bit of ourselves," he said. "They will look to run the ball first and pass when they need to or for the element of surprise. This game could be over in an hour and a half. They are a strong and quick team."

Ironton, 9-3, knows what to expect from the Cardinals offense and Lutz feels their defense is equally strong.

"They have a very quick defense," he said. "Their front four has a lot of speed and they have skilled people in the secondary. They have a lot of good athletes on both sides of the ball."

The Cardinals line has plenty of size including Dan Assion who is a 6-4, 250 pound tackle and Mike Handel is the other defensive tackle at 6-1, 218.

The linebackers are Zack Cook, 6-0, 185, Tony Madison, 6-1, 185 and Mike Schorsten at 5-9, 170.

On offense the Cardinal feature Mike Kubik at quarterback a 6-3 192 junior. Ken Kraft, 5-11, 208, Joe Clautti 6-0, 185, D.J. Walker, 6-1 182, and Madison are the Cardinals running backs.

On the offensive line Chris Mariotti, 5-10, 181 and Jeremy Hanhold, 6-2, 238, are the only two changes to from the defensive interior.

The Fighting Tigers ground game has led them to three straight wins in the playoffs. Michael Henry, fullback, has rushed for over 1,000 yards with 1,114 on 154 carries for a 7.2 yard per carry average. Henry’s backfield mate, Jason Harmon, has piled up 830 yards on 151 carries with a 5.5 yard average.

Harmon has also hauled in 28 passes for 644 yards and seven touchdowns with 12 touchdowns total for the year.

Quarterback Jimmy Peyton has hit 57-118 passes this season for 1,150 yards and 12 touchdowns.

"We both like to run the ball and that is what will most likely determine the outcome," Lutz said. "They are like us, they can be diverse but running comes first."

Cardinal Mooney, 12-1, lost its first game of the season to Struthers 12-0 and since then it has ran off 12 striaght wins.

In the playoffs, the Cardinals opened with a 19-16 win over Utica. In round two it was a 61-0 blowout of Chippewa and last week a 27-8 regional championship win over Coshocton 27-8.