William Wotring/The Dominion Post & WVMetroNews

John Marshall’s Justin Frohnapfel will try to help the Monarchs bounce back from an opening week loss to University.

— By Shawn Rine

GAMES TO WATCH

CLASS A

No. 2 Doddridge County (1-0) at Tyler Consolidated (0-1)

When: Friday, 7 p.m.

Last Week: Doddridge won its 21st consecutive regular-season game, opening a new stadium with a 49-6 rout of rival South Harrison. Tyler took one on the chin in Ellenboro against Ritchie County, 58-20.

Why it’s important: The Bulldogs, who made a run to last season’s semifinals, believe they have what it takes to get back there and go even farther, so this would be a big victory. The Silver Knights, who also qualified for the postseason, can ill afford to start the season 0-2. On an individual level, this is a matchup of two of the state’s best runners.

Who to watch for Doddridge County: The Bulldogs have plenty of weapons, but it all starts with running back Hunter America. The winner of the Curt Warner award last season, America carried 23 times for 162 yards and scored four times against South Harrison.

Who to watch for Tyler Consolidated: For the third straight season, Mark Rucker is the straw that stirs the Silvers Knights’ drink. A physical presence who can run through or past opponents, Rucker is coming off a game in which he ran for 186 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

No. 7 Magnolia (0-0) at No. 4 Williamstown (0-1)

When: Friday, 7 p.m.

Last Week: Magnolia began its season with a bye in Week 1. Williamstown traveled to top-ranked Wheeling Central for a Thursday night opener, and left with a 35-13 loss.

Why it’s important: It’s the second straight Top 10 matchup for the Yellowjackets to begin the season. This is a tough way to open for an inexperienced Magnolia team that is low on numbers and features only two seniors on the roster.

Who to watch for Magnolia: Two-way lineman Mikey Hamrick was a force last season on both sides of the ball. He earned first-team all-state honors for his work on the defensive line.

Who to watch for Williamstown: Against a stout Wheeling Central defense, Ty Moore was able to rack up 128 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries.

Steubenville Catholic, Ohio (1-0) at No. 1 Wheeling Central (1-0)

When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.

Last Week: Steubenville Catholic forced a pair of late turnovers to hand Columbus Africentric a 28-24 loss. Wheeling Central made quick work against Williamstown, 35-13.

Why it’s important: The mission is clear for the Maroon Knights: An undefeated regular season, capped by a third straight state title. This would be a huge feather in the cap for first-year Crusaders coach Anthony Agresta.

Who to watch for Steubenville Catholic: Jeffrey Dawson was instrumental in the opening victory. The bruising runner ran for 142 yards and reached the end zone twice.

Who to watch for Wheeling Central: Jalen Creighton made a statement that he is ready to take on a starring role. The senior receiver hauled in seven passes for 171 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

CLASS AAA

No. 7 Wheeling Park (1-0) at St. Clairsville, Ohio (1-0)

When: Friday, 7:30 p.m.

Last Week: Wheeling Park scored on all seven of its second-half possessions, turning a 7-6 halftime lead into a 55-12 rout of Brooke. St. Clairsville used a ground-and-pound attack to dispose of Carrollton, Ohio, 28-6.

Why it’s important: This is a chance for the Patriots to find out where they stand early in the season. The Red Devils, who have pocketed victories in 20 of their last 21 regular-season games, figure to win a lot more this year so bonus points are at stake.

Who to watch for Wheeling Park: Sincere Sinclair may not be a name that is known outside of the Upper Ohio Valley, but it’s only a matter of time. Last week he caught four passes for 55 yards including an 18-yard score, to go along with a kickoff return that set up another TD. Sinclair is also one of Park’s top defenders.

Who to watch for St. Clairsville: Tyler Tonkovitch, Aaron Jordan and Jacob Jordan. The debuting trio had a hand in all 330 yards and all four touchdowns last week.

CLASS AA VS. CLASS AAA

Weir (0-1) at John Marshall (0-1)

When: Friday, 7 p.m.

Last Week: Both teams suffered what could be considered stunning losses. For the first time in seven seasons Weir fell to rival Oak Glen, 34-14. John Marshall, on the other hand, was its own worst enemy in an 18-7 defeat at the hands of a young University squad.

Why it’s important: An 0-2 start for either of these teams would almost be insurmountable, with a bevy of tough games remaining on their respective schedules. Nobody wants to be playing for their playoff lives after Week 2.

Who to watch for Weir: Quarterback Anthony DiMatteis did a little bit of everything. He completed nine passes for 139 yards and also ran 18 times for 69 yards and a touchdown.

Who to watch for John Marshall: Back for his senior season after a devastating knee injury in 2018, quarterback Justin Frohnapfel completed 10-of-26 passes for 110 yards and also ran for 46 yards and a TD on 13 carries.

Other games: Brooke (0-1) at Hedgesville (0-1); Oak Glen (1-0) at Philip Barbour (0-1); Wirt County (0-1) at Paden City (0-1); Hundred (0-1) at Cameron (0-1); Carrick, Pa. (0-2) at Madonna (1-0)

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