The Logan High School football team’s 43-26 loss a couple of weeks ago at rival Chapmanville was a big blow to the Wildcats and their quest to make it back to the Triple-A playoffs.
The loss dropped the Cats to 2-3.
Logan, however, is not out of it yet and there’s still a lot of football left to be played.
The Wildcats need a win badly on Friday night as Greenbrier East (3-3) comes to town for a 7:30 p.m. clash at Logan Stadium.
Out of Logan’s three losses this year to Man, Point Pleasant and Chapmanville, the Wildcats’ opponents are a combined 17-0. Man is 5-0 and ranked No. 1 in the state in Class A, while both Point and Chapmanville are off to 6-0 starts.
“We feel like we are a few plays away from being 4-1,” Logan coach Gary Mullins said. “We just have got to keep fighting and keep working and trying to get to where we are better than last year. We’re trying to get to that third win. Then we’ll worry about the fourth one after that. We’re going week to week. We’re getting better and we’re playing hard. We’re just playing good teams too. The three teams that we’ve lost to are a combined 17-0.
“We feel like a couple of those games we were a couple plays away from winning it. Turnovers and missed tackles hurt us in those.”
Greenbrier East, which toppled Logan 42-19 last year at home, will be tough for Logan to beat as will next week’s homecoming foe, John Marshall (4-1).
The Wildcats, however, will most likely be favored to beat its last three opponents — 2A Sissonville (1-4), 3A Oak Hill (1-4) and 2A Scott (2-4) which have a combined 4-12 record.
Oak Hill appears to be the weakest of the three.
The Red Devils’ only win to date was a 31-21 victory over Lewis County in the season opener. Oak Hill has since lost to Musselman (44-6), Wayne (64-13), Beckley (40-3) and Shady Spring (30-21). Logan beat Shady earlier in the season.
John Marshall’s only loss so far was a 36-21 setback at Mountain Ridge (Md.). The Monarchs have wins over University (22-11), Bellaire, Ohio (27-10), Bellfonte, Pa., (28-17) and Buckeye Local, Ohio (63-6).
Mullins said he knows this week and next are key.
If Logan is able to win its last three games, the Cats would fare no worse than 5-5.
If the Cats can run the table that puts Logan at 7-3 and in the hunt for the playoffs.
“We’ve got to keep playing because we have two very good teams coming here to play us back-to-back at home,” Mullins said. “It starts with Greenbrier East and we’re going to have to play a lot better than we have up until this point. It’s our second game at home and we’re excited to get back out there.”
Mullins said Logan must turn it around real quick beginning this week.
“We feel like we are getting better but we’ve got to get better fast,” he said. “Because Greenbrier East is really good.”
Last week’s bye week enabled Logan to heal up its injuries and extra prep time for the Spartans.
“We all needed some rest and then to work on some things,” Mullins said. “Last Wednesday we played an intersquad game. It was very physical and it was good to see that they had that fight left in them and that they are wanting to get better. We had a great week and now it’s time to get back to work. We have just five games left unless you are able to earn some more time.”
the Logan D
Logan’s Daniel Browning, a 5-9, 185-pound junior linebacker, has been a stalwart for the Wildcats so far in the ‘15 football season.
Going into Friday’s home game against Greenbrier East, Browning leads the team with 29 total tackles. He’s also had a fumble recovery, a caused fumble, a sack and a QB hurry.
“Our defense is playing better,” Mullins said. “Daniel Browning has been the most consistent player. I wouldn’t say that he’s surprised us. It’s really what we expected from him. He’s been our best defensive player and our best tackler. We’ve done some things right on defense but we have had a hard time stringing some things together.”
up the yards
Matthew Cox has been Logan’s top yard-getter this fall.
He’s had 616 yards rushing on 77 attempts with seven TDs this season and is Logan’s leading ground gainer. He’s also Logan’s leading receiver with 17 catches for 285 yards.
“Matt Cox has been lights out,” Mullins said. “Nobody could really expect him to play as well as he’s played. Through five games there’s really nothing that he could do any different.”
Logan JV team unbeaten
The Logan JV football team is 4-0 this season.
The Wildcats beat Mingo Central 20-14 last week. LHS also has a pair of wins over Man and a victory over Herbert Hoover.
Logan’s JV’s played Sherman on Monday at home, then go to Sherman next Monday. On Oct. 19, Logan hosts Lincoln County. Then on Oct. 26, the Cats host Sissonville. The finale is at home against Mingo Central.
Coach Mullins said running back Devonte Tolliver is getting over his injuries and will be ready to go on Friday night.
“Devonte played his best game last time and he’s probably the healthiest that he’s been the entire season,” Mullins said. “In the Chapmanville game he looked a lot better and was much more explosive.”
Cody Maynard is still out for the season but other than that, Mullins said his team is healthy.
“We’re good to go,” he said. “Cody is still out for the whole year. Other than him it looks like everyone else will be ready to go.”
(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).