Morgantown (4-0) at Martinsburg (3-1)
Morgantown and Martinsburg have forged a solid rivalry in recent seasons despite a distance of 160 miles between the two schools. The two teams, ranked No. 1 and No. 2 all season in the MetroNews Power Rankings, have been among the very best programs in the state, and they’ve met both in the regular season and in the playoffs on a seemingly regular basis.
Most of the games have been competitive, but Martinsburg has won six in a row in the series. The last win for Morgantown came in the 2004 state championship game.
Last year, Martinsburg came to Morgantown and won 56-28.
“Martinsburg has been our nemesis lately,” said Morgantown coach John Bowers. “They’ve got a great football program. But we’ve got a great program as well. It will be a great game. It will be a lot of fun.”
Morgantown hasn’t had a significant test yet as the Mohigans have averaged 56 points per game. Kennedy Award candidate Chazzy Thomas has 987 yards and 17 touchdowns already. Thomas behind a massive offensive line that features seniors Andre Collins, Amanii Brown, Zach Mayle, Bryce Wharry, D.J. Summers and James Guynn. It’s a veteran Morgantown team that hopes to win on the road this week to give itself a chance to stay home through the course of the playoffs.
Parkersburg South (1-3) at University (3-1)
University’s game at Wheeling Park started poorly last week as a special teams mistake gave the Patriots the ball inside the UHS 10 less than three minutes into the game. Park cashed in as Bryce Ingram scored a touchdown the first time he touched the ball this season. The Hawks played the Patriots even for the rest of the half as it stayed 7-0 until late in the second quarter after Park added a long field goal to take a 10-0 lead into the locker room. Down 17-0 in the third, UHS got a touchdown, but had the points from a fourth quarter field goal taken off the board due to an illegal shift penalty. Wheeling Park managed to control the clock the rest of the way.
“We played right with them, but they were a little better than us,” UHS coach John Kelley said about the first loss of the season. “We need to get better and there are areas we can get better. This week is the mid-point of the season and with three road games. We need to try and get this one because coming out of this 4-1 would be pretty solid.”
The Hawks continue to throw the ball well as quarterback Travis Renner went over 100 yards for the third time in four games.
University now turns its attention to a struggling Parkersburg South team that has dropped three in a row since a season opening win over Ripley.
The Hawks have won two in a row in this series.
North Marion (0-4) at Preston (1-3)
Preston scored a stunning comeback in Kingwood last week, scoring 47 unanswered points after falling behind Elkins, 26-0.
Sophomore Scott Stone sparked the comeback with a series of big plays. Stone hit Austin Newsome on a crossing pattern that led to an 80-yard touchdown as the Knights got on the board. Stone would hit Shane Parks on another slant for a 29 yard touchdown. Then, following a successful onside kick, Preston got its first lead of the season on a Levi Nolan 24-yard scoring reception from Stone. Yet another successful onside kick in the fourth quarter helped Preston get another score that would sew up the victory.
Preston has a chance to win two in a row for the first time since its last playoff season of 2008.
Senior Chase Banker had one of the touchdowns for North Marion last week in a loss to Buckhannon. Banker led his team with 61 rushing yards.
Oak Hill (3-0) at Buckhannon-Upshur (2-2)
The Buccaneers have won two straight as they have beaten Elkins and North Marion in back-to-back weeks.
Seth Cutright has been the big play guy for Buckhannon in those two games. Cutright had a 96 yard touchdown run vs. Elkins. Last week, Cutright reeled off a 99 yard touchdown run in the win over North Marion.
Oak Hill has a pair of outstanding play makers in K.K. Goodman and Jalen Jones. Goodman scored four touchdowns in a win over Nicholas County last week. Jones is one of the top rushers in the state as he had over 236 yards on the ground last week.
Bridgeport (3-1) at East Fairmont (1-2)
The highlight for Bridgeport in its win over rival Robert C. Byrd last week was the performance of the defense. The Indians held RCB to just 37 yards and two first downs in the first half of that game. Bridgeport had two individuals go over the 100 yard rushing mark as it finished with 409 total yards on the ground.
This will be the first home game for East Fairmont. The Bees have made trips to Liberty, Nicholas County and Lincoln, having lost the last two.
Fairmont Senior (3-0) at Elkins (0-4)
Fairmont Senior has averaged 48 points per game so far this season. The Polar Bears are coming off a bye week.
Elkins has allowed at least 30 points in each of its four losses so far. The Tigers lost a 26 point lead last week in falling at Preston.
Grafton (0-4) at Robert C. Byrd (2-2)
Grafton held a fourth quarter lead on the road at Weir before falling on a late two point conversion. It was the first of three consecutive games on the road for the Bearcats.
RCB looks to bounce back from a loss in a rivalry game against Bridgeport. The Eagles will try and get a playoff push going as they don’t have a team remaining on the schedule that currently has a winning record.
Tucker County (3-1) at Philip Barbour (3-1)
The Colts are adjusting without three year starting quarterback Dillon Newman who is out with a knee injury. Philip Barbour won at Liberty last week as Al Johnson scored two touchdown on passes from Tyler Titchnell. The Colts defense forced three turnovers in the 28-7 win.
Tucker County rolled up three consecutive shutout victories prior to a 33-14 loss at Moorefield last week.
Bishop Donahue (3-1) at Notre Dame (3-0)
Notre Dame rallied with 20 points over the final six minutes last week to stay unbeaten with a 32-22 win over Valley. The Irish won the game despite being out gained by over 100 yards.
Bishop Donahue’s only loss so far this season occurred during week three at Clay-Battelle.
Lincoln County (0-4) at Lewis County (2-1)
Lewis County has an opportunity for a third straight win playing a home against a winless Lincoln County team. The Minutemen are coming off a bye week.
Lincoln (3-1) at South Harrison (1-2)
Lincoln will try and carry the momentum from its first ever win over East Fairmont on the road this week to South Harrison. Lincoln had nearly perfect balance on offense in that game as the Cougars rushed for 216 yards and threw for 192.
South Harrison lost its first two games of the season on the road before beating Tygarts Valley at home last week.
Clay-Battelle (3-0) at Bellaire St. John’s, Ohio
Weir (1-3) vs. Liberty (0-3)