The Logan High School basketball team has never been one to back down from anyone.
They aren’t going to start this season.
That’s because the Wildcats have yet another difficult schedule awaiting.
Logan, which last won the Class AAA state championship in 2010, has reached the state tourney three years in a row. The Wildcats went 17-9 last season and were eventually ousted 63-50 by Martinsburg in the first round of the Class AAA state tourney at the Charleston Civic Center.
Logan will be challenged this season with games against Class A state powers Tug Valley, Magnolia and Charleston Catholic and are slated to take on 3A schools Huntington, George Washington, Point Pleasant, Lincoln County, Parkersburg, Winfield, Capital and Greenbrier East. Old 2A rival Westside is also on the schedule again.
Also on the slate is a Dec. 14 home game against Berwick (Pa.), which is coached by former Scott High School mentor Jason Kingery.
The season opener is set for Dec. 11 at home against Hurricane.
Logan is also scheduled to play at the George Washington tourney over Christmas break and will host the annual King Coal Classic Jan. 25-26 at Logan’s Willie Akers Arena.
Logan coach Mark Hatcher, who survived a health scare over the summer, said his team has some new opponents and changes to the basketball schedule.
“We had to change our schedule. We were sort of surprised that Winfield and Wheeling Park dropped us,” Hatcher said. “That made us have to have some significant changes because we used to have some games that we could count on every year. We ended up picking Winfield back up for one game at the Civic Center instead of GW. Now, we’re playing GW home and away instead of Winfield.”
Logan is scheduled to play Magnolia and St. Albans at the George Washington tournament, Dec. 21-22.
“We also picked up a tournament over at GW. Myself and Rick Greene are good friends,” Hatcher said. “We’re going to go and play in their tournament. A couple of years ago, they came down to play in ours. We also play Berwick, Pa. That’s Jason Kingery, the former coach at Scott’s team. We also picked up Lincoln County home and away. We think that will be a good rivalry game because they are a possible sectional opponent. We added Point Pleasant home and away. They are Triple-A and we used to be Cardinal Conference foes. We’ve always had a good relationship with their basketball program up there. It’s always a fun trip to go up there where the Mothman is. We also picked up Hurricane who is one of the top teams in our region. They are very talented. They had their first winning season in a long time last year and they’ve got everybody back. That will be a tough opener.”
The Wildcats are scheduled to play Belfry (Ky.) and Greenbrier East at their own King Coal Classic, set for Jan. 25-26 at the field hosue.
The tourney starts on Jan. 25 with the Tug Valley-Greenbrier East game. The Logan girls’ basketball team then takes on Greenbrier East. The Logan-Belfry game is then the capper.
Then on Jan. 26 on the final night of the tournament, Tolsia plays Capital, Logan takes on Greenbrier East and the Fairmont State University men’s basketball battles with Davis & Elkins in the finale. Fairmont State’s team boasts a pair of freshmen players from Logan — Stevie Browning and Trevor Andrews-Evans. The two will be able to play in front of the fans one more time.
Overall, Hatcher said it’s a difficult schedule for his team.
“We have some Single-A teams — Magnolia, Tug Valley and Charleston Catholic — and those are probably the top Single-A teams in the state,” Hatcher said. “Magnolia has their big man back. He’s a really good player and goes 6-6 or 6-7. We go to Charleston Catholic and that’s a tough place to play. Those are great games and that’s going to be some good competition. I’m about the only Triple-A coach around that will play some Single-A’s. We also play some tough schools in Double-A such as Westside.”
Logan is the defending Class AAA sectional and regional co-champions.
The Wildcats won 64-45 at Huntington in the sectional championship game, then defeated Winfield, 59-50, at home in the regional tourney at Logan.
Logan is scheduled to have its first preseason test on Nov. 24 as the Wildcats are slated to play at Belfry, Ky., its first opponent in the King Coal Classic.
2012-13 Logan High School
Boys’ Basketball Schedule
Dec. 11: Hurricane, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 14: Berwick, Pa., 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 20: Huntington, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 21: vs. Magnolia (at George Washington tourney), 6:30 p.m.
Dec. 22: vs. St. Albans (at George Washington tourney), 6:30 p.m.
Dec. 28: George Washington, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 5: at Charleston Catholic, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 8: at Greenbrier East, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 11: Westside, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 12: at Point Pleasant, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 15: at Lincoln County, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 22: Tug Valley, 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 25: Belfry, Ky. (King Coal Classic at Logan), 8 p.m.
Jan. 26: Greenbrier East (King Coal Classic at Logan), 8 p.m.
Feb. 5: Lincoln County, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 8: Point Pleasant, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 9: at Westside, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 12: at Parkersburg, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 13: vs. Winfield (at Charleston Civic Center), 8 p.m.
Feb. 16: at Tug Valley, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 19: at George Washington, 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 21: Capital, 7:30 p.m.