CHAPMANVILLE, W.Va. — For the second straight week, the Chapmanville Regional High School football team will face the Wildcats.
Not the Logan Wildcats but a team nicknamed the Wildcats.
Chapmanville (3-2 overall and 3-2 in the Cardinal Conference), fresh off last week’s 29-8 win at county rival and No. 12-ranked Logan, will hit the road at face the Nitro Wildcats (1-3, 1-2) on Friday night.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at the Nitro High School football field.
It’s the first ever meeting between the two schools in football. Chapmanville and Nitro have played each other in the past in baseball, but not on the gridiron.
The Tigers will go into the game as the heavy favorites against Nitro, a former Class AAA MSAC school, which has struggled mightily over the last several years.
Nitro opened the season with a 9-6 win over rival Poca. The Wildcats have since lost three straight games — 43-21 to Class AAA rival St. Albans in the Battle for the Bridge, 43-8 at Herbert Hoover and 60-6 last week at home to No. 5-ranked Mingo Central.
Nitro, a new Cardinal Conference member, used to have a solid football program. The Wildcats won the 1998 Class AAA state championship and were very good until the early 2000s, but have fallen on hard times since.
Chapmanville coach Rob Dial said Nitro is better than its record might indicate and said he knows his team must play well in order to grab a win over the Cats.
“They are a very good team and they are better than what their record indicates,” Dial said of Nitro. “They’ve had some very difficult games in the first part of their season. They are very well coached by Bryce Casto, a former state champion coach at South Charleston. He does a great job with that program. His Defensive Coordinator is Todd Chevalier, the former head coach at Sissonville. They are very well coached. We expect a tough game on Friday night.”
The Tigers are tied for 17th in the state with Keyser in this week’s Class AA WVSSAC Football Ratings.
With the top 16 teams reaching the playoffs in each class, Chapmanville needs a win this week to keep in the chase.
“We need to wait until the end of the season to see where we are at,” Dial said. “We have to focus on this week. If we are fortunate enough to make it to six or seven wins at the end of the season the chances of us making it to the playoffs are pretty good. We have a long way to go before we get there. We have to focus in Nitro and make that our main objective.”
Nitro was pounded last week by No. 5-ranked Mingo Central as Miners’ junior quarterback Jeremy Dillon connected on 17 of 26 passes for 468 yards and seven touchdowns and added a rushing score. By halftime, Dillon had already thrown for 345 yards and five TDs as the Miners led 39-0.
The Miners struck on the very first play of the game as Dillon fired a 52-yard TD to Dalton Sheppard. Two plays later, Dillon hooked up with freshman Drew Hatfield for a 17-yard score and the rout was on.
Nitro also gave up a 95-yard interception return for a touchdown by MC’s Tyler Grimmett.
For the game, Nitro was outgained in total offense 543-160.
Nitro reached the red zone in the first half, marching to the Mingo Central 6-yard line but lost the ball on downs. The Wildcats also recovered three fumbles — two by Behren Franks and one by Logan Morris but could not convert them into points.
The Wildcats’ lone score was a 5-yard touchdown by freshman Zachary Bruer in the fourth quarter. Bruer led the Wildcats with 47 rushing yards on nine carries.
“They seem to play hard,” Dial said of Nitro. “We watched some film against Mingo Central and against Herbert Hoover and they were right on the game with Hoover throughout most of the game.”
Chapmanville’s Tristan Browning was able to run for 172 yards on 27 carries, including three touchdown runs of 5, 21 and 30 yards in last week’s win over Logan.
CRHS quarterback Adam Vance hooked up on 10 of 14 passes for 113 yards. Dylan Smith had four carries for 41 yards and four catches for 29 yards. Billy Sheppard had three catches for 57 yards.
Austin Butcher had three sacks last week to lead the CRHS defense.
Seth Whitt finished with six solo tackles and three assists. Timmy Bigley had five solos and three assists, while Evan Willis had five tackles and two assisted stops.
Ryan Craddock contributed four solos, three assists and a fumble recovery.
Dillon Renniger had three solos, one assist and one interception in the end zone for a touchback which killed one of Logan’s drives.
The Tigers limited Logan to just 221 total yards. CRHS had 380, including 267 on the ground on 44 carries.
“We were very happy coming out of last week the way that we played,” Dial said. “We were very proud and we felt like we represented Chapmanville and the school and the community very well on Friday night. But we have to put that one behind us and we have to understand that that’s the past. We can look back on it once the season is over and enjoy it and take those good memories but the primary goal this week to prepare as we are playing a very good Nitro team.”
Football Friday night
WHAT: Chapmanville (3-2, 3-2) at Nitro (1-3, 1-2)
WHEN: Friday night, 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Nitro High School football field, Nitro, W.Va.
SURFACE: Natural grass
LAST WEEK: Nitro lost 60-6 to Mingo Central, Chapmanville won 29-8 at Logan.
LAST YEAR’S MEETING: Did not meet
ALL-TIME SERIES: First meeting between the two schools
Team CONF ALL PF PA
Mingo Central 2-0 4-0 212 61
Chapmanville 3-2 3-2 150 81
Logan 1-1 3-2 169 107
Scott 1-4 1-4 101 143
Wayne 0-2 1-3 100 108
Team CONF ALL PF PA
Winfield 3-0 3-1 123 118
Sissonville 3-1 3-1 122 97
Herbert Hoover 3-1 3-1 118 78
Nitro 1-2 1-3 44 152
Poca 0-4 0-5 58 215
Friday, September 30 games:
*Chapmanville at Nitro, 7 p.m.
*Mingo Central at Wayne, 7:30 p.m.
*Sissonville at Winfield, 7:30 p.m.
*Poca at Herbert Hoover, 7:30 p.m.
Logan — OPEN DATE
Scott — OPEN DATE
*Cardinal Conference game
Friday, September 23 results:
Chapmanville 29, Logan 8
Mingo Central 60, Nitro 6
Scott 38, Poca 14
Winfield 23, Wayne 22
Herbert Hoover — OPEN DATE
Sissonville — OPEN DATE
High School 2016
Football Schedule (3-2):
Aug. 26: *at Sissonville, L 15-22
Sept. 2: *Herbert Hoover, L 12-13
Sept. 9: *at Scott, W 27-12
Sept. 16: *Poca (Hall of Fame Game), W 53-20
Sept. 23: *at Logan, W 29-8
Sept. 30: *at Nitro, 7 p.m.
Oct. 7: Man, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 14: *at Mingo Central, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 21: *Winfield, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 28: *Wayne, 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 4: OPEN DATE
*Cardinal Conference game