7:00am: West Virginia Outdoors with Chris Lawrence

North Central Report


Wheeling Park (2-6) at Fairmont Senior (5-2)  Thursday 

The Polar Bears are putting on a playoff push as they have entered a stretch of four consecutive home games to close the season.    Fairmont Senior is 2-0 so far at home after winning three of five road games.   Amazingly, Fairmont played for the first time at East/West Stadium last week as it defeated Elkins 28-21.   The Polar Bears first home game was played at Fairmont State University.   They had played five of their first six games on the road. 

Fairmont junior quarterback Trevor Malnick went over the 1,000 yard mark for passing this season as he threw for 227 yards last week in the win over Elkins.   Malnick has thrown for 1,117 yards and 14 touchdowns in his first season as a starter.  

Fairmont Senior will close the season with home games against Wheeling Park, Bridgeport and East Fairmont. 

Wheeling Park snapped a three game losing streak with a victory over Lincoln County last week. It was just the third win in the last 17 games for the Patriots.   

Parkersburg South (3-4) at Robert C. Byrd (5-3)

 RCB coach Josh Gorrell is deeply concerned about the path his team is on as the Eagles have lost two of three.   Robert C. Byrd is just 2-2 following the huge win over Bridgeport during week four of the season

"We are not playing exactly the way I would want us to be playing at this time of the year," Gorrell said.   "The biggest battle we are fighting right now is leadership.   We need guys to step up and perform when they are called to do it."

RCB is coming off a road loss to one of the top AA programs in the state in Magnolia.  Gorell was frustrated with his offense in that loss.   The Eagles were held to negative yardage until the final two plays of the game. 

"We had the opportunity to put 28 points on the board in the first half," Gorrell said of last week’s game, a 35-7 loss.   "We dropped two balls that would have gone for touchdowns.   Then we had an inside zone run that we missed a block on the outside or it would have gone.   We didn’t deserve to win the ball game.  We didn’t play well enough. 

"It’s the little things that are killing us, a play here or a play there.  It’s a lack of attention to detail on the field.  

"I’m frustrated with it and I think the kids are too," Gorell continued.  "I know they care.  But until we learn to take care of the little things, we will continue to have problems."

RCB is down to the final two games of the regular season; at home this week against Parkersburg South, and then on the road next week at Lewis County.

"We’ve got good kids but we have to understand time is running out," Gorrell said.  "We are really young when you look at it.   We will lose just three guys when the season ends.    But that is no excuse.  They all should know have to execute and what is expected from them at this point."

Parkersburg South had last week off.   The Patriots have lost three in a row.  Last time out, South lost to rival Parkersburg 48-7 back on Oct. 8. 

"We are still in the (playoff) race at 5-3," Gorrell pointed out.  "But if we don’t get it together and step our play up, we will stay home and watch everyone else play in November."   

Preston (0-7) at University (7-1)

University blew open a close game at John Marshall with a special teams touchdown late in the first half and two more quick scores in the third quarter.   UHS won the game 48-14. 

The Hawks had two big kick returns in the game.   Sophomore Deion Cunningham returned a first quarter punt 63 yards to set up a field goal.    Then after John Marshall pulled to within 14-7 late in the second quarter, senior Micah  Wilson returned the ensuing kickoff 75 yards for a score.    That seemed to be the back breaker. 

"Coach (John) Kelley always says special teams is always responsible for at least one or two wins a year," Wilson said.  "He also says you can lose a game with special teams.    We have really taken that to heart over the last few weeks.  

Wilson said it was good for the Hawks to bounce back from their first loss of the season the previous week against Brooke.  

"We had to get going again," Wilson said following last Friday’s win over John Marshall.   "Now we can get the momentum heading right again over the final few games."

One positive for the Hawks was the run game as five different players rushed for over 50 yards. 

"Give the offensive line a lot of credit," Kelley said.  "We had challenged them and they performed.   That is exactly what we’ll need over the last few games and into the playoffs."

UHS hosts a struggling Preston team this week.   Then it will be the MoHawk Bowl across town at Pony Lewis Field on Thursday, Oct. 28.   

"One thing about Preston," Kelley said.  "They are going to hit you.  They are like North Marion in that regard.   You’ll know you’ve been in a football game."

Morgantown (7-1) at John Marshall (1-6)

Morgantown rolled over a Brooke team that had handed University its first loss of the season the week before.  Senior Joey Musick rushed for 243 yards and three touchdowns.  The Mohigans had over 450  yards rushing for the second consecutive week. 

"It was very impressive," MHS coach John Bowers said after the game.  "The offensive line is doing a great job.  The receivers are blocking, the running backs are throwing great lead blocks.  And we are getting the ball to our play makers." 

Morgantown actually fell behind 7-0 in the game before reeling off 31 unanswered points.  MHS had a number of big plays.   Musick scored on runs of 47, 59 and 65 yards.  Chris Glover had a 41-yard touchdown run.  

Bridgeport (6-1) at Logan (4-2)

The Indians will make the 180 mile trip south for a game against an improved Logan team.   Both of these teams are playing very solid defense.

Bridgeport held Grafton to minus-10 rushing yards in a 27-6 victory last week.  The Indians have allowed a total of 13 points over their last three games–all victories. 

Logan held off Herbert Hoover 14-7 last week as the Wildcats defense turned Hoover back three times after they drove deep into Logan territory.   Logan has won two in a row following a bye week.  

Lewis County (6-2) at Elkins (3-4)

Lewis County running back C.J. Rahming went over the 4,000 yard mark for his career on the first carry of last week’s game at Philip Barbour.   Rahming’s had a 39-yard gain on that carry.   he would finish with 212 yards.   Lewis County overcame 12 penalties and two turnovers to win.   The Minutemen look to sew up a AAA playoff spot with a road win this week. 

Elkins has lost three of four.

Nicholas County (7-1) at North Marion (3-4)

Nicholas County takes a six game winning streak on the road.   The Grizzlies have averaged 43 points per game over that stretch.   Quarterback Zach Mayes has keyed the Nicholas offense as he has thrown for 925 yards and 15 touchdowns so far.  Mayes has an additional 361 yards and 10 touchdowns on the ground. 

North Marion is coming off a bye week.  The Huskies had a three game winning streak snapped last time out with a home loss to Morgantown.  

Buckhannon-Upshur (1-6) at East Fairmont (1-7)

East Fairmont scored a touchdown in each quarter as it won for the first time this season, 27-6 at Preston.   Quarterback Tyler McCutchan threw touchdown passes of 25 and 28 yards to Travis Nuzum. Tyler Conaway had 142 all purpose yards and a touchdown.

Buckhannon will close the season with three consecutive road games following a week off.   The Buccaneers will visit East Fairmont this week, then Preston and Elkins. 

Lincoln (2-5) at Liberty (6-2)

Liberty won a 46-36 shootout over South Harrison as it got back on the winning track following a loss to Bridgeport the week before.  Quarterback Shay Noss had a career game with 249 yards rushing and five touchdowns.   Noss also threw for 145 yards and another score.   Liberty also got a 90-yard kickoff return from Ty Noss.

Lincoln has won two of three following an 0-4 start.  

Grafton (3-4) at Berkeley Springs (1-6)

Grafton will play three in a row on the road to close the season.  Trips to Liberty and Magnolia will follow this week’s game at Berkeley Springs. 

Tygarts Valley (0-7) at Clay-Battelle (3-4)

Jordon Hockenberry of the Cee-Bees went over the 1,000 yard rushing mark last week in a 34-0 win over Cameron.  Hockenberry finished with 168 yards rushing as he surpassed the 1,000 yard mark for the second consecutive season. 

St. Mary’s (5-2) at South Harrison (3-4)

South Harrison will try and play spoiler as it hosts playoff contender St. Mary’s.   The Hawks had leads of 14-12 in the first half and 36-32 in the second half against AA Liberty last week before losing in a shootout 36-26.  

Philip Barbour (2-5) at Notre Dame (2-5)

The Colts had one of their stronger efforts this season last week in a loss at home to Lewis County.   Colts quarterback Cody Lindsey completed passes to six different receivers as he finished with 145 yards passing. 

Notre Dame will try to snap a four game losing streak.  The Irish lost 46-13 at Bishop Donahue a week ago. 


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