CHAPMANVILLE — If the Chapmanville Regional High School football team wants to continue to be a player in the Class AA playoff picture the Tigers must forget about last week’s game.
They must forget about it real quick and move on.
Chapmanville, which fell from No. 13 to 17th in the state in this week’s Class AA rankings, lost a 26-22 heartbreaker at Class A No. 6 and county rival Man last Friday.
The Tigers had a 22-20 lead late until Man went ahead with a touchdown and then secured the victory by intercepting a Chapmanville pass on the Man 10-yard line in the final minute of the game.
CRHS hopes to bounce back this Friday night in the home finale against Class AA No. 14 Mingo Central in a key Cardinal Conference game.
The game, also Senior Night for Chapmanville, is set for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff time at Tiger Stadium and has playoff implications written all over it.
Chapmanville comes into the game with a 4-3 overall record and 3-1 mark in the conference. Mingo Central, which moved up two spots this week, is 4-2, 2-1. The Tigers are currently third place in the league standings, while the Miners are fourth place, just one-half game behind CRHS.
It’s the first ever meeting on the gridiron between the two teams.
Mingo Central, a three-year consolidation of the former Williamson, Burch, Gilbert and Matewan high schools, joined the Cardinal Conference last season but did not meet the Tigers.
It’s shaping up to be a huge game for both teams.
The winner will get win No. 5 and will have a big boost in the playoff ratings. The losing team will see their post-season chances diminished somewhat.
Chapmanville closes out the season with three games in three weeks as the Tigers’ bye week falls on Nov. 8 in Week 11 of the regular season. The Tigers finish with a pair of road conference games in Wayne County at Tolsia and at Wayne, the two-time defending state champions in Double-A.
Mingo Central, a 5-6 playoff team from a year ago, raised quite a few eyebrows with last week’s 68-14 blowout win at Poca over the Dots. By comparison, Chapmanville squeaked past the Dots, 34-31 earlier in the season on the road as the Tigers had to rally to win.
The Miners rolled up 487 yards of total offense last week at Poca, including 374 on the ground. Seven different Miners scored touchdowns and the offense only punted once on 11 possessions.
“They are pretty tough,” Chapmanville coach George Barker said of the Miners. “They are pretty physical and they have all the tools offensively to be explosive so we’ve got our work cut out for us.”
With the winner getting to five wins and with only a few weeks left in the regular season it’s a big game for both teams.
“It’s a typical Cardinal Conference game,” Barker said. “We’ve got a great opponent. In order to win we have to play assignment football. Everyone has to do what they are supposed to do. Mistakes are always going to be the difference in the ballgame.”
Mingo Central third-year coach Yogi Kinder was pleased with his team’s performance last week.
“We haven’t ever scored 60 points. Everybody comes to practice and everybody needs to play. I’m just happy for our guys. That is what it is all about,” Kinder said after the game.
The Miners have improved greatly this season only losing to Class AA powers No. 1 Wayne (40-12) and No. 8 Wyoming East (27-26) in the season opener. Mingo Central has wins this season over Tolsia (20-19), Webster County (45-24) and Westside (22-8).
Mingo Central has achieved balance this year with its offensive attack.
Last week against the Dots, the Miners scored on their first five drives. Mingo Central had 115 yards rushing and 113 passing at the half as the Miners led 35-0.
“I’m old school,” Kinder said. “I like to run it. My other coaches like to pass it. They watch too much television. Balance is what we kind of look for.”
The Miners are led by quarterback Stephen Hammond, who jumpstarted his team last week with a 24-yard TD pass in the first quarter. Running back Chance Lester then made it 14-0 with a 15-yard TD run.
It was 22-0 Mingo Central after a 38-yard touchdown pass to Dakweon Willis. Then it was Willis and Deonte Joplin who added 1-yard TD runs as the Miners made it 35-0.
The second half turned into a laugher as Chase Justice scored on the first play on a 47-yard TD run. Lester tacked on a 6-yard score and Joplin reached the end zone from 3 yards out as MC led 53-7 after three. The Miners then scored two more TDs with reserve players.
Willis led Mingo Central with 120 yards on 11 carries, and Joplin added 51 yards on seven attempts. Eleven different players carried the ball for the Miners.
Mingo Central outgained the Dots 487-180 in total yards. The Miners rushed 36 times for 374 yards. Poca had 46 attempts for 168 yards.
Hammond was 4-for-6 passing for 113 yards. Alex Lee had one catch for 59 yards.
Barker said Mingo Central runs a multiple set offense and runs it well.
“We have to recognize what sets they are in,” Barker said. “We have to play assignment and we have to understand what they do in each of their sets and what are the possibilities. We have to be in the right place and we have to read the right key.”
The Tigers hope to get their rushing attack going this week. Last week against the Hillbillies, Chapmanville was held to just 30 net yards rushing on 27 carries. Devin Wiley was limited to eight rushes for 23 yards. He also had a TD grab. Paul Workman had 14 attempts for 24 yards.
Sophomore uarterack Alex Berry was 11-for-22 passing for 215 yards with one TD and two picks. Senior wide receiver Brady Cox had four catches for 129 yards. Junior wideout Zac Casto had three grabs for 39 yards. Jacob Dingess snared three passes for 15 yards.
On defense, the Tigers were led by Tanner Dillon’s seven tackles and two assists. Matt Dingess had six solos, one assist and one fumble recovery. Matt Chapman contributed five solo tackles and three assists. Casto and Michael Hall both had five solos and two assists.
On the season, Berry is 49-for-85 passing for 781 yards with nine touchdowns and six interceptions.
Wiley has 118 rushes for 620 yards and five touchdowns. Workman has 96 carries for 322 yards and five scores.
Cox has 27 catches for 514 yards on the season and four touchdowns. Casto has 13 grabs for 284 yards and five TDs. Dingess has reeled in 13 passes for 151 yards and two touchdowns.
Dingess leads Chapmanville in tackles with 45 solos and 14 assists. Casto has 43 solo tackles and 17 assists. Chapman has 38 solos and 16 assists, while Nick Brumfield has 36 solos and 11 assisted stops.
Cox and Dillon each have 31 solo tackles. Cox has nine assists and Dillon 13. Hall has contributed 27 solos and 12 assists.
Cox leads the Tigers with two interceptions. Dingess is the leader in sacks with three. Chris Brewster leads the team with three fumble recoveries. Dillon has fallen on the pigskin twice.
Wiley has punted 10 times for an average of 32.1 yards per kick.
Chapmanville will honor its senior players on Friday night as it is also Senior Night. The senior players to be honored will be: Jordan Toler; Austin Frye; Cox; Brumfield; Jackie Johnson; Workman; Chapman; Justin Hensley; Brewster; Gabe Maynard; and Alex Maynard.
“Brewster, Brady, Matt Chapman and Gabe Maynard have been leaders for us,” Barker said. “Brewster and Maynard were instrumental in the off-season working out in the weight room. They have been dedicated in getting this thing on track. They are great kids. You couldn’t ask for better kids than those kids. This has been a pretty good team. They’ve had a good attitude and they have done everything what we’ve asked them to do. When you are coaching sometimes it’s not the wins and losses it’s the kids and how they play and how they practice. It’s been a good group.”
Toler, who injured his hand in the Man game and sat out the second half, is questionable for Friday night’s game. He played at quarterback two weeks ago in the victory over James Monroe as Berry was sidelined with a concussion.
Cox was also injured in the Man game as he fell on the sideline and cut his arm.
“Brady got stitches in his arm but I think that he’ll be OK,” Barker said. “He dove after a ball and hit one of those drains beside the field at Man. They need to cover those things up.”
It’s shaping up to be a showdown game with Mingo Central.
“You always need to be lucky, too,” Barker said.
Cardinal Conference Standings
TEAM CONF ALL
Wayne 4-0 6-0
Sissonville 4-1 5-1
Chapmanville 3-1 4-3
Mingo Central 2-1 4-2
Herbert Hoover 2-3 2-4
Tolsia 1-3 2-4
Scott 1-4 3-4
Poca 0-4 1-6
Last Friday night’s scores:
Man 26, Chapmanville 22
Mingo Central 68, Poca 14
Wayne 55, Scott 10
Roane County 38, Tolsia 26
Sissonville 48, Herbert Hoover 14
Friday, Oct. 18 games:
Mingo Central at Chapmanville (Senior Night), 7:30 p.m.
Tolsia at Scott, 7:30 p.m.
Wayne at Herbert Hoover, 7:30 p.m.
Clay County at Sissonville, 7:30 p.m.
Poca — BYE WEEK