Editor's note: This is the fifth part of a five-part feature story on the Logan High School football team, which is holding summer drills in June as part of its three-week practice period.
By PAUL ADKINS
LOGAN - There's never anything easy in the Cardinal Conference.
That's the norm.
This year will be no exception as the Logan High School football team faces another challenging schedule.
Within the conference, Logan faces playoff teams Poca (9-2), Wayne (8-3) and Mingo Central (8-3).
The three teams tied for league championship honors last season as the Dots, Pioneers and Miners all went 8-1 within conference play.
Mingo Central's lone league loss was a 45-27 setback at Poca.
The Dots lost 23-0 at home to Wayne in the regular season finale as the Pioneers tied for the conference title. Wayne's only conference defeat was a 29-24 setback in Week 2 at home to Mingo Central.
Mingo Central, Poca and Wayne all lost playoff openers last season with the Miners falling 65-36 at Point Pleasant, the Pioneers losing 28-8 at Keyser and Poca dropping a 41-14 home decision to Weir.
Also on Logan's schedule are conference teams Chapmanville (5-5) and Sissonville (6-4) which just missed the Class AA playoffs last season.
Logan gets Mingo Central at home in Week 3 then travels later in the season to Poca and Wayne.
"It's a tough schedule and it will definitely be tough every single week," Logan coach Jimmy Sheppard said. "It always seems that it is a little bit heavier at the beginning part of the season. We'll have Mingo Central and Poca early on and both of those teams are really good. Sissonville is good too and they've been a playoff team the last three or four years."
Logan's season opener on August 30 at Man will also be a difficult one.
The Wildcats beat the Hillbillies 20-14 in last year's season opener at Logan Stadium.
Man, however, brings many players back from last year's 6-4 team.
"Man brings a lot back," Sheppard said. "They basically bring back just about every skilled position player. They have many of the same running backs that they've had the last two seasons, guys like Cameron Frye, Zach Frye, Quentin Moody and the two Milton kids, one at quarterback and the other at receiver. It's going to be a dog fight. We'll have to play really well in order to compete with them."
The Billies were able to beat Chapmanville in the season finale and close out the campaign having won six out of their last eight games.
"Man did a good job at bouncing back last year," Sheppard said. "They ended up with a winning record and beat Chapmanville at home in the last game of the season. They played really well."
Logan has two preseason scrimmages set.
The Wildcats are slated to host Lincoln County on Friday, August 16 at 7 p.m.
Then on Saturday, August 24, Logan is matched up against host Scott in the Cardinal Conference Gridorama at 9 a.m.
Paul Adkins is the Sports Editor of the Logan Banner. Follow him on Twitter at @PAdkinsBanner or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
2019 Logan High School
Aug. 30: at Man, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 6: *Sissonville, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 13: *Mingo Central, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 20: *at Poca, 7 p.m.
Sept. 27: *Winfield, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 4: *at Nitro, 7 p.m.
Oct. 11: *Scott, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 18: OPEN DATE
Oct. 25: *Chapmanville, 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 1: *at Wayne, 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 8: *at Herbert Hoover, 7:30 p.m.
*Cardinal Conference game
Cardinal Conference Grid-O-Rama
Saturday, August 24
Skyhawk Field, Scott High School, Madison, W.Va.
Game 1: Logan vs. Scott, 9 a.m.
Game 2: Poca vs. Wayne, 10:30 a.m.
Game 3: Nitro vs. Sissonville, noon
Game 4: Chapmanville vs. Herbert Hoover, 1:30 p.m.
Game 5: Mingo Central vs. Winfield, 3 p.m.