GAMES TO WATCH

CLASS AAA

No. 3 Huntington (6-0) at No. 5 Capital (5-1)

When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.

Last week: The Highlanders held off Hurricane for a 34-21 win, while the Cougars regrouped during their bye week following their only loss to this point against Spring Valley.

Why it’s important: With a win, Huntington moves to 7-0 before facing Cabell Midland, Parkersburg and Spring Valley to end the season. The Cougars’ schedule the last three weeks isn’t nearly as difficult, so a win here puts them in a good spot to finish the regular season 9-1 and host at least two playoff games.

Who to watch for Huntington: With tailback Ty Wilcoxon out with a broken ankle, QB TaJhan Blackwell has stepped up. In addition to rushing for a 99-yard TD against Hurricane, Blackwell completed 8-of-17 passes for 135 yards and three touchdowns.

Who to watch for Capital: The Cougars’ explosive offense was held in check against the Timberwolves, but dual threat QB Kerry Martin Jr. is no stranger to making big plays. Deshawn Harper and Deshaun Jones are relied on as skill position players, while Kalai Clark is a defensive standout who makes the most of his offensive touches near the goal line. 

No. 11 Parkersburg (4-3) at No. 13 Hurricane (3-4)

When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.

Last week: The Big Reds were dominant on both sides of the ball in an impressive 32-7 win over George Washington. The Redskins hung tough with Huntington before ultimately falling short, 34-21.

Why it’s important: Parkersburg has been a different team since Brenton Strange rejoined the lineup in Week 3. After starting 0-2, the Big Reds have won four of five. But a loss to Hurricane would be costly as games against Huntington and Parkersburg South await to finish the season. Hurricane needs a victory to keep hope alive for a winning regular season and take a big step toward securing a playoff berth.,

Who to watch for Parkersburg: Strange, a recent Penn State commit, must be accounted for every play on both sides of the ball. In addition to his receiving touchdown against GW, he recorded two sacks and picked off a pair of passes. Running back Tyler Moler went over 300 yards rushing last week and has been a workhorse throughout the season.

Who to watch for Hurricane: Much like Moler is a workhorse for the Big Reds, tailback Christian Hill fills that role for the Redskins. Hill was held in check by a stingy Huntington defense, but teammate Nate Barnnham ran back two kickoffs for TDs, including one that covered 99 yards.

CLASS AA

Winfield (2-4) at No. 16 Sissonville (4-2)

When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.

Last week: The Generals lost to Poca, 33-14. The Indians had their bye week, but also lost to the Dots in their most recent contest, 40-20.

Why it’s important: If Winfield wants to keep its postseason hopes alive, it needs a win here and likely three more to close out the regular season. Sissonville is in good shape to make the playoffs with a win this week, but a loss would almost put the Indians in must-win mode next week against Wayne.

Who to watch for Winfield: The Generals will need big games from quarterback Nick Vance and running back John Covert to keep up with Sissonville’s high-powered offense.

Who to watch for Sissonville: Quarterback Will Hackney is the driving force behind an offense that scored at least 36 points in each game until the loss to the Dots.

Other games: Riverside (1-5) at South Charleston (1-5); St. Albans (1-5) at Spring Valley (7-0); Valley Fayette (0-7) at Buffalo (0-6)

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