The first-year Chapmanville and Logan high school soccer teams will have their work cut out at the season’s end.
The Tigers and Wildcats have been placed in a tough Class AA/A sectional, Region 4 Section 2, along with Winfield, Scott, Lincoln County, Huntington St. Joe and Nitro.
Chapmanville Regional and Logan are fielding soccer teams for the first time in school history this fall.
CRHS and Logan will be having co-ed teams but will compete in the boys’ division.
Both squads were scheduled to hit the soccer pitch on Monday with the first day of practice.
“It will be a very, very competitive section. There’s a good chance whoever wins will be in state championship,” Chapmanville soccer coach Greg Dillon said.
Nitro’s soccer team had an outstanding season a year ago as a Class AAA school as the Wildcats went 16-4-2.
Lincoln County, also playing in the 3A ranks last year, was just 3-13-2 but return some veteran players.
Both are dropping to the Class AA/A level this fall in soccer.
Scott was a respectable 12-7-3 last year.
Just like tennis, the WVSSAC splits its soccer teams into two divisions — Class AAA and a combined Class AA/A.
Last fall, Fairmont Senior won the Class AA/A state championship match with a 3-2 win over Charleston Catholic.
The WVSSAC has sanctioned a state soccer tournament since 1988.
Chapmanville is scheduled to open the regular season on Aug. 20 at home against Tug Valley, another first-year program. Kickoff is 6 p.m. at Chapmanville’s Tiger Stadium.
The Tigers then travel to Shelby Valley (Ky.) on Aug. 25, and then back to Kentucky on Aug. 27 with a match at Pike Central. CRHS hosts Nitro on Sept. 1.
CRHS hosts the preseason Soccer Rama on Aug. 13 beginning at 8 a.m.
Logan, coached by Jay Trump, is set to open the season Aug. 20 at Nitro in a Cardinal Conference match at noon. The Wildcats have their home opener on Aug. 27 against Poca and then travel to Mingo Central on Aug. 30.
Mingo Central will compete in Class AA/A Section 2 with Bluefield, James Monroe, Oak Hill, Pikeview, Shady Spring and Greater Beckley Christian.
(Paul Adkins is the Sports Editor of the Logan Banner. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @PAdkinsBanner).