CHAPMANVILLE — It’s the Tigers and the Skyhawks.
The Chapmanville Regional High School football team will get its first preseason test on Saturday in the third-annual Cardinal Conference Gridorama at the Scott High School football field in Madison as CRHS takes on rival Scott.
The scrimmage is set for 8 p.m.
It’s the fourth game of the day as all Cardinal Conference teams will be facing off.
“We have the last game of the day,” Chapmanville coach George Barker said. “This year is the third year. Our goal is to not play anyone that you open up with. Then you start to figure it out. This team can’t play this team and this team can’t play this team. It kind of worked out this year that we’ve got Scott. We have them in Week 3 in the regular season.”
Barker said even though it’s just a scrimmage he expects a big crowd to see the Tigers play the Skyhawks.
The two teams are slated to meet during the regular season on Sept. 11 in Chapmanville.
The Skyhawks are 6-5 against Chapmanville over the last 11 years, including last year’s 39-14 victory at home over the Tigers.
The two teams have split against one other the last four years. Chapmanville beat Scott 20-13 in 2013.
“I think that they might get a little more money this year because we are playing Scott,” Barker said. “I look for there to be a good turnout. I think this has worked out having the grid. The whole idea was to have it on schools that have turf so we don’t tear up their field. Scott has turf so it works out. If we would have bad weather and we were playing on grass you get four ballgames on a wet field in one day and you will destroy it.”
In the first Cardinal Conference Gridorama clash Poca takes on Tolsia in the opener at 1:15 p.m.
Sissonville then battles with Mingo Central in Game 2 at 3:30 p.m.
The third game at 5:45 p.m. pits Herbert Hoover against Wayne.
The Cardinal Conference Gridorama is being presented by Suddenlink.
The event features four controlled scrimmages involving all eight conference teams.
Each scrimmage will be timed and limited to two hours on a continuously-running game clock and consisting of 10-play drives and down-and-distance plays.
The coaches of the opposing teams in each scrimmage will decide the exact format for their respective scrimmage.
The gates open at 11 a.m.
Admission is $7 for students and adults. Admission receipts will be divided among the member schools. Concessions will also be available.
It’s the second year in a row the Cardinal Grid has been held by Scott. Chapmanville scrimmaged against Wayne last year.
Back in 2013, the gridorama was hosted by Mingo Central. The Tigers faced the Poca Dots that year.
Chapmanville is coming off last year’s 4-6 football campaign and open the regular season Aug. 28 at home against Sissonville in a conference matchup.
Scott opens the season on Aug. 28 at Herbert Hoover in a conference matchup. The Skyhawks were 7-4 and a playoff team a year ago, falling 28-22 in overtime at Nicholas County in the first round of the Class AA state playoffs.
In the first gridorama game, the Poca Dots take on the Tolsia Rebels. Poca was 0-10 last year. The Dots open the season Aug. 28 at Class AAA rival Nitro. The Rebels were 4-6 last season and open Aug. 28 at rival Wayne.
Game 2 pits Sissonville against Mingo Central a game of 2A playoff teams from a year ago.
The Mingo Central Miners are coming off a 10-2 season last year in which MCHS beat Sissonville 35-13 in the opening round of the playoffs. The Miners then lost 35-17 to another Cardinal Conference team in Wayne in the state quarterfinals.
Mingo Central is set to open the season Aug. 28 at home against Wyoming East in a non-conference game.
Sissonville, which opens the season at Chapmanville, went 7-4 last season after the loss to Mingo Central in the playoffs.
The third scrimmage has the Wayne Pioneers taking on Herbert Hoover. The Pioneers had a 10-3 season last year as Wayne beat Fairmont (43-40) and Mingo Central (35-17) in the playoffs before falling in the state semifinals at Bridgeport (48-7). Wayne won state championships in 2011 and 2012 and lost to Bridgeport in the 2013 state finals in the Wheeling snow.
The Herbert Hoover Huskies were 6-4 last year and open the regular season Aug. 28 at home against Scott at Falling Rock.
Since Chapmanville is getting Field Turf, Barker said CRHS will likely host the gridorama in 2016.
“I look for this to be here at Chapmanville next year,” Barker said.
Barker said Scott is a good central location to have the gridorama sandwiched between the three conference teams in the Kanawha Valley and the five in southern West Virginia.
“Scott is a little more centrally located than Mingo Central,” Barker said. “It was kind of scheduled to back up there to Mingo Central this year but we changed it back to Scott because of the location. I really like this and the kids really like it. I think it’s a good fit. I have a hard time trying to figure out what time we are going to go over there. I don’t think I want my kids to get there too early and lay in the hot sun. We’re just going to go over there and scrimmage and see what happens.”
Barker said the Tigers are ready to roll.
“We’re excited about this season,” he said.
(Paul Adkins is the Sports Editor of the Logan Banner. He can be reached at 304-752-6950 ext. 1730, by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @PAdkinsBanner).