Cuyahoga Falls is off to its best start in football in five years.
The Black Tigers are 2-0 with home wins over Parma Normandy and Springfield. They last won their first two games in 2014 with victories over Barberton and Garfield.
Cuyahoga Falls will visit the Barberton Magics (1-1) on Friday night.
“Our senior leadership has been as good as it’s been since we took over,” Black Tigers third-year coach Shane Parker said. “... We are trying to change the culture and it is taking some time.”
Robert Graves rushed for 231 yards and seven touchdowns on 11 carries in Falls' 62-0 win over Normandy in Week 1. He then ran for 204 yards and two touchdowns on 26 carries in a 19-6 win over Springfield in Week 2, and also caught three passes from Braunavan Arsenault for 93 yards and a touchdown.
Parker, a 2004 Cuyahoga Falls graduate, praised the play of Graves, and also the offensive linemen in front of him — David Pask, Daiquantee Glenn, Donovan Deighton, Jordan Tuttle and Donovan Mills.
“Defensively, Daiquantee Glenn is a lineman that has stood out the most,” Parker said. “He has had two outstanding weeks on our defensive line. Jaren King is another D-linemen that has had a great two weeks. Linebacker Jared Andrews is also off to a great start, and our secondary is led by Jacob Carleton and Braunavan Arsenault.”
The last time Cuyahoga Falls finished with a winning record was in 2002 when the Black Tigers went 6-4. Parker was a junior on that team, and was a sophomore on the 2001 team that went 8-3 and competed in the Division I playoffs.
“There is an attitude around these guys,” Parker said. “Obviously, things haven’t been the greatest record-wise at Cuyahoga Falls for quite some time. ... It is cool to see all the kids’ hard work throughout the offseason and in the classroom, and in all the stuff that we do ultimately paying off on Friday nights.”
Parker added that “our student section has been absolutely nuts and the community support for the team has been outstanding.”
More from Week 2
• DeaMonte Trayanum ran for 250 yards and four touchdowns on eight carries to lead host Archbishop Hoban to a 49-0 win over Youngstown Cardinal Mooney on Friday. Devin Hightower returned an interception 32 yards for a touchdown for Hoban (2-0).
• Revere (2-0) topped visiting Eastlake North 34-7 with two rushing touchdowns from Brandon Trocano and two passing touchdowns from Nate Klonowski. Cameron Penzenik and Logan Weinert each caught a touchdown pass from Klonowski.
• Calvin Dudley threw a touchdown pass to Kenton Duty and also ran for a score to lead host Coventry (2-0) to a 27-7 win over Carrollton. Brendan Longwell added a rushing touchdown and Reese Brunson threw a touchdown pass to Jimmie Cotton-Painter.
• Copley (1-1) beat visiting Firestone 52-12 with Jackson Madden throwing three touchdowns passes, two to Preston Taylor and one to Antoine Campbell Jr. Madden also made 7-of-7 extra points and kicked a 35-yard field goal, and Taylor ran for a touchdown.
Michael Beaven can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.