Manningham, Sutton lead North to Victory

The 60th annual Ohio North-South Classic featured more of what fans in the Buckeye state have come to expect, a very talented North squad, a roster full of instate commitments and yes, one of those future Wolverines. This year that player was Warren G. Harding wide receiver Mario Manningham, who was one of the first commitments for the Maize and Blue in the 2005 class. Manningham had a great game!

The 60th annual Ohio North-South Classic featured more of what fans in the Buckeye state have come to expect, a very talented North squad, a roster full of instate commitments and yes, one of those future Wolverines. This year that player was Warren G. Harding wide receiver Mario Manningham, who was one of the first commitments for the Maize and Blue in the 2005 class. "I was the only Michigan player from both teams! Said Manningham, "I kind of took that to the head, knowing that I couldn't embarrass myself in front of these Columbus people." At the end of the day however, the only ones Mario embarrassed were opposing cornerbacks.

Cincinnati St. Xavier quarterback Robby Schoenhoft (Ohio State) started the South's first drive off with a 30 yard pass to future Buckeye teammate Andre Amos (Ohio State) which put them near mid field. Later in the drive hit Greg Orton (Purdue) to put the South at the 6 yard line but they failed to capitalize, settling for a field goal. The defensive stand was thanks in large part to excellent play from the North secondary led by Jamario O' Neal (Ohio State) and Joe Kleinsmith (Indiana). The North squad did not take much time to respond, as Ryan Brinson (West Virginia) took the kickoff 55 yards to the South 34 yard line. After a Tyrell Sutton (Northwestern) 11 yard run, quarterback Billy Cundiff (Connecticut ) hit Mario Manningham (Michigan) for a 21 yard touchdown reception, making the score 7-3.

The South offense sputtered the next series and was forced to punt, and again the North looked for quick points. The first play on offense, Cundiff dropped back and delivered a beautiful pass to Manningham who ran a deep post route and cashed in with a 46 yard reception on cornerback David Bruton (Notre Dame). Manningham's touchdown put the North up 14-3. On the following drive, the South inserted Dante Love (Ball State) in at quarterback but the offense still could not move the football due to dominating end play by Glenville's Curtis Smith (Cincinnati) and Akron SVSM's Lawrence Wilson (Ohio State).

The South was forced to punt again, and Tyrell Sutton went to work on the ground, racking up 38 yards off six carries, including a 20 yard scamper to pay dirt, breaking tackles from just about everyone on the field. A Joe Kleinsmith extra point made it a 21-3 lead for the North. On the next drive it was more of the same for the South, Lawrence Wilson was a force against the run while Curtis Smith sacked Love for a seven yard loss and the drive stalled, leading to a 22 yard punt by Arthur Zurcher (Walsh).

The North took over at its own 22 yard line, where Sutton kicked off the march with an 11 yard run. Tim Hiller (Western Michigan) took over for Cundiff and two plays later hit Mario Manningham with a 58 yard pass that would have been a touchdown, but was nullified on a holding call. After a four yard Sutton run, Hiller hit Andrew Means (Indiana) with a 22 yard pass for a first down. The drive made it to the six yard line before stalling on a 4th down false start penalty. The North settled for Kleinsmith hitting a 28 yard chip shot field goal to push the lead to 24-3.

The South would answer however, on the second play of the drive, Robbie Schoenhoft pump faked Jamario O'Neal then hit Jared Humphreys deep, and he could not be caught by the speedy Ohio State signee. The touchdown brought the score to 24-10. The South got the ball back due to a mercy rule but stalled after four incomplete passes by Schoenhoft. The North only had 13 seconds to work with, and after an 11 yard completion to Mario Manningham, they again looked to him on a deep pass but it fell incomplete, thus ending the half.

Dante Love started the second half for the South squad, and hit Greg Orton with a 34 yard pass early on. A face masking penalty kept the drive alive for the South and they made the most of the second opportunity. Love hit E.J. Morton-Green (Miami of Ohio) for 31 yards to bring the South within striking distance. Love then hit Jared Humphreys in the end zone for his second touchdown of the day. The touchdown brought the South within a touchdown with the score 24-17.

That was the start of the Tyrell Sutton show. On the following possession, the North fed the ball to their Mr. Football award winning tailback who proceeded to rumble 38 yards on his first carry. Sutton then had a ten yard carry before finishing it with a one yard touchdown run up the middle. Sutton's touchdown gave the North some breathing room with the score 31-17.

The South returned a Joe Kleinsmith kickoff to the 14 yard line, and after a one yard run, Dante Love was picked off by Derrick Stewart (Cincinnati) on a long pass intended for Andre Amos. Sutton then showed his dominance again, taking a screen pass through and around the South defense before being hog tied by three defenders 38 yards later. Sutton then took in a 15 yard touchdown run for his third of the game, padding the lead to 38-17.

Schoenhoft took over at quarterback again, but threw three straight incompletions and the South was forced to punt. The North took over at its own 46 yard line. Tim Hiller and Andrew Means took over the drive, connecting three times for 46 yards including a 22 yard touchdown pass. The extra point by Kleinsmith set the record for most points scored in a game by one team at 45, beating the old record of 44. Derrick Stewart nabbed his second interception of the game, picking off Schoenhoft on what would be the South's final drive.

Marcus Waugh (Cincinnati) and Sutton combined for 58 yards rushing on the final drive, before Billy Cundiff took a knee on the last play, finishing the North's lopsided victory and increasing it' s series lead to 33-24-3. Mario Manningham nabbed offensive MVP honors for the North with three catches for 81 yards and two touchdowns. "I just came out here, having fun, doing what I have to do to make my team win." Manningham said after the game. Tyrell Sutton was the clear choice for game MVP honors, finishing with 21 carries for 203 yards and three touchdowns.

Stay tuned for more on Manningham and the Ohio North-South Classic in the upcoming days.


First Quarter
SOUTH : FG Arthur Zurcher, New Philadelphia 27, 6:31
NORTH : Mario Manningham, Warren Harding 21 pass from Billy Cundiff, Green (Joe Kleinsmith, Lakewood St. Edward kick), 4:10
NORTH : Mario Manningham 46 pass from Billy Cundiff (Joe Kleinsmith kick), 1:59

Second Quarter
NORTH : Tyrell Sutton, Akron Hoban 20 run (Joe Kleinsmith kick), 8:07
NORTH : FG Joe Kleinsmith 28, 1:05
SOUTH : Jared Humphreys, Jackson 74 pass from Robby Schoenhoft, St. Xavier (Arthur Zurcher kick), :44

Third Quarter
SOUTH : Jared Humphreys 4 pass from Dante Love, Cin. Withrow (Arthur Zurcher kick), 7:02
NORTH : Tyrell Sutton 2 run (Joe Kleinsmith kick), 4:45
NORTH : Tyrell Sutton 20 run (Joe Kleinsmith kick), 2:01

Fourth Quarter
NORTH : Andrew Means, Avon Lake 22 pass from Tim Hiller, Orville (Joe Kleinsmith kick), 9:36

Rushing leaders:
North: Tyrell Sutton 21-203, Marcus Waugh, Toledo St. John's 6-65, Kendell Davis 3-16, Mike Gray, Tallmadge 1-1, Billy Cundiff 1-(1)
South: Cedric Tolbert, Xenia, 6-13, Dante Love 5-1

Passing leaders:
North: Billy Cundiff 5-6-109-0, Tim Hiller 6-7-85-0, Greg Micheli, Upper Sandusky 1-2-34-0
South: Robby Schoenhoft 8-23-179-1, Dante Love 2-6-69-1, Chris Wright, Middletown 0-1-0-0

Receiving leaders:
North: Andrew Means 4-68, Mario Manningham 3-81, Jared Martin, Clyde 2-11, Lawrence Wilson, Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary 1-24, Jim Ramella, Cleve. St. Ignatius 1-10.
South: E.J. Morton-Green, Cin. Princeton 3-80, Jared Humphreys 2-78, Greg Orton 4-6, Andre Amos, Middleton 1-30.

Attendance: 5,250

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