JJ’s Photo Gallery: Toledo Central Catholic 10, Toledo St. Francis DeSales 0

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Toledo Central Catholic senior quarterback David Walender (10) scrambles for yardage against Toledo St. Francis last week

Sights from the epic Toledo City League rivalry matchup for the Irish Knight Trophy.


 

The Irish Knight trophy is 50 years old. On
Sunday, November 8, 1959, the inaugural rivalry game was played between the
favored Toledo Central Catholic Fighting Irish and the upstart Toledo St.
Francis de Sales Knights at the University of Toledo Glass Bowl Stadium before
an estimated crowd of 10,000 fans.  St. Francis handily defeated Central
Catholic 28-0.

The 51st battle for the Irish Knight trophy was also a
battle for the top spot in the Toledo City League conference race and a
boat-load of state playoff computer points. Pundits slightly favored St.
Francis over Central Catholic prior to the game but the Fighting Irish prevailed
10-0. 

 

The annual battle for possession of the
Irish Knight and a year’s worth of bragging rights for the victors epitomizes
what high school football in Northwest Ohio is all about. Not even the
unrelenting day-long rain could prevent the estimated 7,000 fans from both
schools from coming out to the Gallagher Stadium to watch the much-anticipated
game. 

 

Toledo St. Francis head coach Dick Cromwell,
in his 26th season, has a combined 24-8 record against Central
Catholic. 

 

Toledo Central Catholic head coach Greg
Dempsey has a 5-6 record with rival Toledo St. Francis. Dempsey’s 2005 team won
the state Division II football championship. 

 

Toledo Central Catholic cheerleaders hold a
banner that states, “This Is Our Knight”.  

 

The cheerleaders for Toledo St. Francis
display their banner that states, “It’s Our Irish Knight”. 

 

The Toledo St. Francis Knights entered the
contest with a perfect 6-0 record and ranked No. 4 in the state
Division II polls and first in the Region 6 computer ratings. St. Francis
defeated state-ranked Division I Toledo Whitmer last Friday night 21-17 to
remain unbeaten and maintain its high poll rankings. 

 

The Toledo Central Catholic Fighting Irish
entered the game with a 5-1 season record and ranked 14th in the
Division II polls. Central Catholic’s only loss (17-7) this season was to
Indiana’s top-ranked Division 5A (big school) powerhouse Mishawaka Penn on
September 11. 

 

The game officials huddle together before
the opening kickoff to discuss strategies. The significance of the game was
apparent to not only to the opposing teams but to the officials charged with
calling the game.  

 

The Toledo St. Francis Knights cheerleaders
show that their team is the best. 

 

Not even the continuous rain could dampen
the spirits of the Toledo Central Catholic cheerleaders. 

 

The weather was more befitting for ducks
than fans as Toledo St. Francis fans attempt to stay dry under their umbrella.

 

The Toledo Central Catholic student body
wore black clothing as they attempted to “Black Out the Knights”. Their
t-shirts state how intense the rivalry between the two cross-town schools is. 

 Toledo Central Catholic students Alexa
Kowalski (left), Erin Shordt (center), and Melanie Wambold (right) state the
their Fighting Irish football team is number one. 

 

Danny has been a ball boy for the Toledo
Central Catholic Fighting Irish football team since he was five-years-old.  His
father and he made the trip from their home in Cincinnati to Toledo just to be
on the sidelines for another battle for the Irish Knight trophy. 

 

Tyler Halicek, a sophomore at Toledo St.
Francis, was honored to play a trumpet solo during his band’s halftime
performance. The score at halftime was deadlocked at 0-0. 

 

Toledo St. Francis sophomore fullback Nate
Beauch (46) lowers his head as he tries to plow through the Toledo Central
Catholic defensive line. 

 

Toledo St. Francis senior running back Lee
Lukasik (23) has rushed for 497 yards on 83 attempts and scored six touchdowns
in six previous games this season. 

 

Toledo St. Francis senior running back Lee
Lukasik (23) stiff-arms Toledo Central Catholic junior linebacker Chris Hoover
(43) to avoid being tackled as senior linebacker Jake Henderson (47) follows in
close pursuit. Lukasik rushed for 11 times for 21 yards. 

 

Toledo St. Francis senior quarterback Tyler
Johnston is sacked for a loss by Toledo Central Catholic senior defensive end
Jamaal Tarrent (8). 

 

Toledo Central Catholic junior tailback
Calebb Goings (23) tucks the football in tight against his body as Toledo St.
Francis senior defensive lineman Alex Kenzie (73) wraps him up. Goings (23) has
carried the ball 98 times for 466 yards and 10 touchdowns in six previous games
this season. 

 

Toledo Central Catholic running back Calebb
Goings (23) takes a punishing hit from Toledo St. Francis junior safety David
Yodzis (15). Goings gained 118 hard-fought yards on 32 carries in the game. 

 

In six previous games this season Toledo St.
Francis senior wide receiver Scott Loy (21) has caught 15 passes for 350 yards
and seven touchdowns. Loy was held to only two catches for 40 yards in the
game. 

 

Toledo Central Catholic senior quarterback
David Walender (10) scrambles for yardage as he tries to avoid being tackled by
Toledo St. Francis junior defensive back Dylan Szegedi (82). Walender rushed
three times for 26 yards in the game.

 

Toledo Central Catholic senior running back
Nate Hobbs (13) is tackled by Dan Yodzis (15) of Toledo St. Francis. Hobbs (13)
returned to action after suffering a turf toe injury in the second quarter of
the Mishawaka (Ind.) Penn game on September 11.  Catholic Central’s only loss of
the season was to the Penn Kingsmen, Indiana’s top-ranked Division 5A (big
school). 

 

Toledo Central Catholic junior wide receiver
Josh Stump (27) hauled in a pass from quarterback David Walender at the St.
Francis 12-yard and then fought his way into the end zone with Tyler
Johnston(17), who doubles as a defensive back for Toledo St. Francis, riding him
all the way. Stump’s lone catch in the game was for a 32-yard touchdown which
gave the Fighting Irish a 7-0 lead with 4:01 remaining in the third quarter. 

 

Toledo Central Catholic senior kicker Kyle
Burkhardt (6) missed wide on his attempted 35-yard field goal in the second
quarter but connected on a 22-yard field goal with 1:37 remaining in the game to
increase Central Catholic’s lead to 10-0.

 

Toledo Central Catholic senior kicker Kyle
Burkhardt (6) and his holder, quarterback David Walender (10) celebrate his
field goal in the final minute-and-a-half of the game which all but sealed the
win for the Fighting Irish. Burkhardt connected on a 57-yard field goal –
breaking his own school record – in Toledo Central Catholic’s 29-14 win over
Oregon Clay one week ago. 

 

Toledo St. Francis senior wide receiver
Scott Loy (21) was held to only two catches for 40 yards in the game. 

 

With its passing game grounded due to the
inclement weather, the Toledo St. Francis Knights were forced to run the ball. 
Senior quarterback Tyler Johnston (17) follows fellow teammate senior running
back Lee Lukasik (23) through the line. Johnston carried the ball 15 times for
40 yards. 

 

The weather and Toledo Central Catholic’s
pressuring defense forced Toledo St. Francis senior quarterback Tyler Johnston
(17) to scramble out the pocket throughout the entire game.   

 

Toledo Central Catholic senior quarterback
David Walender (10) was forced to scramble too.  Walender gained 26-yards on
three rushes and completed only two of seven passes in the game.  Fortunately
for the Fighting Irish, one of his completions was for a 27-yard touchdown in
the third quarter to put his team in the lead 7-0. 

 

Toledo St. Francis head coach Dick Cromwell
passes on a play to senior wide receiver Noel Gerhart. Gerhart caught one pass
for 13 yards in the game. 

 

Toledo Central Catholic’s defense limited
the Toledo St. Francis Knights to 137 total offensive yards (67-yard rushing and
70-yards passing). 

 

Throughout the entire game, the Toledo St.
Francis Knight’s offense was stymied by a wall of red jerseys and silver
shamrock-adorned helmets worn by the Toledo Central Catholic defense.  

 

Toledo St. Francis long-time school
principal Father Ronald Olszewski, or “Father O” as he is affectionately known,
watches sadly from the sideline as his team loses their first game of the
season.  

 

On the opposite sideline, Toledo Central
Catholic school president Father Dennis Hartigan is all smiles as his beloved
Fighting Irish football team retains possession of the Irish Knight trophy for a
sixth consecutive year.

 

Toledo Central Catholic senior defensive end
Jamaal Tarrent (8) celebrates the hard-fought 10-0 win over Toledo St. Francis.
 

 

For the sixth consecutive year the Toledo
Central Catholic Fighting Irish football team lifts the Irish Knight trophy high
into the air and presents it to the student body. 

 

As is tradition at Toledo Central Catholic,
school president Father Dennis Hartigan addresses the Fighting Irish football
team in the end zone following the game.   

 

The scoreboard says it all! 

 

With its win over Toledo St. Francis, Toledo
Central Catholic improves it season record to 6-1 and remains unbeaten in the
Toledo City League at 4-0.  Central Catholic’s next opponent is powerhouse
Toledo Whitmer, which is ranked #9 in the Division I polls.  The winner will
most likely win the conference title. 

 

Toledo Central Catholic has won the Toledo
City League title four consecutive years and is striving for an unprecedented
fifth title. Toledo Central Catholic won the Division II state football
championship in 2005.  Current Ohio State Buckeye wide receiver Dane
Sanzenbacher was a key player in the Fighting Irish’s thrilling 31-29 victory
over Canfield High School.

 

 

 

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