All eyes are going to be on the Eastern Panhandle this Friday night at Coburn Field in Martinsburg, where a long-anticipated matchup between two top undefeated Eastern Panhandle Athletic Conference rivals is going to take place.
What’s at stake? A potential No. 1 ranking among Class AAA teams in the Mountain State, as well as solid footing on one of the top spots in the Class AAA state playoffs.
Jefferson (7-0), off to its best start since an undefeated season in 2005, gets all facets of its game tested against longtime state AAA power, and undefeated, Martinsburg High School (8-0) at 7 p.m.
The Cougars enjoyed a bye week last Friday while the Bulldogs had an easy time in a 63-16 blowout win over Berkeley County-rival Spring Mills High School. Jefferson’s had time to get over some nagging injuries, so it will be rested.
The Cougars needed that rest, heading into Friday’s game at Martinsburg. They’re going to be facing a Bulldog team which features an aggressive offense, a punishing defense and special teams that can break open a big play at any time, anywhere on the field.
Jefferson will counter with an offense led by senior quarterback Sammy Roberts. He’s joined in the backfield by speedster wideouts Isaiah Fritts, Keyshawn Robinson, Spencer Powell and Caleb Shelton.
Evan Tewell and Christian Blowe provide power at the running back slots. Bryson Fleming has also seen some time at a running back position for Jefferson, but look for him a lot at a defensive back position.
Nolan Meehleib, from his middle linebacker position, has forced his way through many an offensive line to give an opposing quarterback a lot of headaches. As a member of Jefferson’s special teams, he’s put a lot of pressure on punters.
This one’s all going to boil down to which team plays its best game. If both teams bring their best game to Coburn Field, it could be a close one.
Any letdowns, anywhere along the line, could turn the game into a blowout win for someone.
Just who wins this outcome? Well, we’ll all know come Friday night when the final whistle sounds.
WASHINGTON HIGH’S FOOTBALL team ended up in a bit of a struggle in its road game with Preston High School last Friday at Kingwood. The Patriots (3-4), coming out of its bye week, had to hang on for a 14-13 win over the Knights.
Tyler Meisenzahl scored Washington’s first touchdown. Rodrigo Delgado had the Patriots’ second touchdown.
“Tyler might be the quickest young man we have remaining,” Washington coach Glen Simpson said. “We’ve hit a bit of an injury streak here, but the guys are still playing hard. They’re showing up, that’s good.”
The game was scoreless at halftime. When Washington got the second half kickoff, it scored on its first possession, with Meisenzahl scoring the touchdown. Delgado ran in the 2-point conversion.
Washington returns home on Friday to Terry L. Marcus Stadium to host Musselman High School at 7 p.m. The Applemen, which have been hit by injuries, are 3-4. Their latest win was a 25-14 win at Wheeling Park last Friday.
“The last couple of games I’ve watched, they sure look like Musselman to me,” Simpson said.
IT WAS A clean sweep by Jefferson in this year’s Eastern Panhandle Athletic Conference cross country championships, hosted by Hedgesville High School on Wednesday, Oct. 13.
The Cougars’ boys scored an easy, 36-52 win over county-rival Washington. Jefferson’s girls had a tougher time, but edged past Spring Mills, 36-38.
The Cougars’ Kyle deNobel won the boys’ race with a time of 17 minutes, 22 seconds. Teammate Justin Gottlieb crossed the finish line in second (17:28).
Washington’s John Larson finished third (17:44).
Jefferson boosted its team score thanks to taking the No. 10-12 spots in the race. The Cougars’ Connor Ireland got 10th (19:37); David Fogleson was 11th (19:39) and Christian Morel got 12th (20:00).
Rounding out the scoring for Jefferson were Kyle Lewis in 14th place (20:22) and Harris Kester, 19th (20:45). Noah Schappell finished fifth for Washington (18:15), with Logan Musser, seventh (18:58); AJ Atkinson, 15th (20:28); Ethan Meagher, 22nd (21:00); Daniel Locarnini, 24th (21:17); and Zac McGovern, 32nd (23:02).
Martinsburg finished third in the boys’ meet (73), followed by Musselman, fourth (96); Spring Mills, fifth (109) and Hedgesville, sixth (157).
In the girls’ race, Washington’s Katherine McGivern opened up a 25-second lead over Jefferson’s Addie Labombard down the stretch, posting a winning time of 21:01. Spring Mills’ Faith Bush got third (21:59).
The Cougars’ Layla Parker and Emily Cisar finished fourth and fifth, with respective times of 22:09 and 22:10. Jefferson’s Claire Burkhart finished eighth (22:55).
Faith Foglesong got 17th for the Cougars (24:48), with Marcia Robinson 26th (27:29) and Emily McCarrol 27th (28:35).
For Washington, Kaitlyn Baker finished 19th (25;22), followed by Becky McGivern, 21st (25:45); Alexa McIlvaine, 28th (28:45); Ayrial Warner, 31st (29:40) and Emily Thurgood, 32nd (30:00).