CHAPMANVILLE — When the bitter rival Chapmanville Tigers and the Scott Skyhawks do battle on the football field you can usually expect a war.
Many times in the recent series, however, the score has not been close.
The last time the Tigers went to Madison two years ago, Chapmanville took Scott to the woodshed for a 62-20 spanking. The Skyhawks have had their share of blowouts, including a trio of shutouts over the Tigers in the 2000s.
But if last year is any indication, this week’s clash expects to go right down to the wire.
Chapmanville (1-1 overall and 1-1 in the Cardinal Conference) is scheduled to play at Scott (2-0, 1-0) on Friday night in the annual clash, aka by its unofficial name, “The Corridor G Bowl.”
Game time is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at the Scott High School football field.
Chapmanville is coming off last Friday night’s impressive 33-19 league win at home over Herbert Hoover — a week after getting upset 40-21 at Sissonville.
Scott has shown improvement from last year as the Skyhawks destroyed Class AAA Lincoln County, 53-20, last week after drubbing Cardinal Conference opponent Tolsia, 28-6, in the season opener at home on Aug. 24.
The Tigers trail the series with Scott 8-5 since 2000 but have won four out of the last five meetings, including last year’s dramatic come-from-behind 20-16 victory over the Skyhawks.
“It’s going to take a good effort this week against Scott because they are a good football team,” Chapmanville coach George Barker said. “It’s a tremendous rivalry here on Corridor G. It’s just going to be a classic Cardinal Conference battle.”
Barker said several young players new to the varsity level are stepping into their new roles early on this season.
“We have a bunch of newcomers, a lot of the kids that played JV ball last year. They’ve stepped up to the varsity level,” Barker said. “From Week 1 to Week 2 they’ve really gotten better. They saw their first varsity action and then last week they stepped it up. I’m really proud of them. Andrew Workman, Paul Workman, Rodney Workman, Tyler Brewster, Zach Pridemore, Brent Bigley, Dakota Sowers, Matt Chapman and Waylon Dingess, guys like that, have stepped up. Varsity action to these players is all new.”
Scott is coached by 13th-year mentor Shane Griffith, who has a 80-53 career record, including seven playoff appearances. The Skyhawks went just 6-5 last year, losing 34-22 in the first-round of the playoffs at second-seeded Shady Spring.
The Skyhawks are without leading passer and second-leading rusher Jesse Belcher, who graduated, and leading rusher Draven Riffe, who made news in the off-season by transferring to Boone County rival Van.
Scott is led by speedy senior running back Robert Bias and juniors Michael Belcher, Cameron Loftus and Tristan Crone, who scored two touchdowns and rushed for 125 yards against Tolsia. Junior Cody Brown and sophomore Hunter Bradley are Scott’s top quarterbacks.
Bias led Scott last week with 11 rushes for 165 yards and two touchdowns on runs of 38 and 15. Crone also had two touchdowns in the rout over Lincoln County.
The Skyhawks’ line is anchored by senior center Dakota Ball (6-3, 270), senior guard Caleb Linville (5-9, 260) and senior tackle Charlie Sutphin, a two-year starter.
Scott also has a good kicker with the addition of soccer player Dezmond Cordero, who reportedly has a 40-yard range the Skyhawks feel comfortable with. He was just 3-for-6 last week in PATs, however, as two of his kicks were blocked.
“They’ve got their offensive line back. They are all seniors and they’ve got a lot of their skilled position guys back,” Barker said.
Barker said Scott also has an advantage with their Field Turf. Scott High School placed down the artificial surface last season and this will be the first time the Chapmanville varsity team has played on it.
“One thing that helps them is that they’ve got turf,” Barker said. “They can go out there year round. If the people in Logan County would go over there and take a good look maybe we’re not competing on a fair level because we don’t have the same surface. When you have that artificial surface it makes it so they can do a lot of things year round. The kids can go out there and play anytime they want to. Our JV players and our middle school players played there at Scott last year on the turf. Some of them will be experienced but for our seniors it will be the first time they will touch it.”
Chapmanville was led last week by senior running back Dustin Smith, who rolled up 225 yards, officially, on 18 carries. He also had two catches for 27 yards, scored a touchdown and tossed a 43-yard touchdown pass to Brady Cox, who had three touchdowns himself and reeled in five balls for 75 yards.
Tigers’ junior quarterback Max Spradlin was 8-for-13 passing for 138 yards and two scores in his second start.
“Quarterback is one of those positions where experience counts but right now we’re real pleased with Max,” Barker said. “He also needs to be in the list of our newcomers. Last week was a total effort. We got a great game from Smitty. Brandon White also stepped up. If we had a total team effort last week was it. All of those kids did a great job. Our punter Dustin Conley I thought did a great job, too.”
On defense, Chapmanville was led last week by linebackers Matt Chapman and Austin Watts. Chapman had eight tackles and an assist, while Watts finished with seven solo tackles, three assists and a sack. Smith added five solos, two assists, a sack and a caused fumble. Dakota Sowers finsished with six tackles and three assisted stops.
Chapmanville-Scott series since 2000:
2011: Chapmanville 20, Scott 16
2010: Chapmanville 62, Scott 20
2009: Scott 32, Chapmanville 8
2008: Chapmanville 16, Scott 7
2007: Chapmanville 21, Scott 20
2006: Scott 33, Chapmanville 0
2005: Scott 33, Chapmanville 0
2004: Scott 20, Chapmanville 6
2003: Scott 18, Chapmanville 0
2002: Scott 42, Chapmanville 34
2001: Scott 26, Chapmanville 0
2000: Chapmanville 18, Scott 15