Prep Notebook: Local teams shine on offense, defense
Undefeated Cabell Midland, Wayne and once-beaten Huntington High can play on both sides of the football.
Cabell Midland, rated No. 1 in Class AAA with a 9-0 record and a Nov. 2 regular season home game against Hurricane left before the playoffs, averages 40 points per game with a highs of 70 against Woodrow Wilson and 63 against Winfield. The Knights give up 13.6 points on average.
Class AA No. 1 Wayne, 8-0 with a Friday game at Chapmanville and a Nov. 2 home game against Bluefield remaining, is putting up 54.3 points a game with a high of 84 against Ravenswood. The defending state champion Pioneers also allow 13.6 points on defense.
Huntington High, rated No. 3 in Class AAA at 7-1, lost only a one-point decision to Cabell Midland. Huntington High's remaining games are Friday at home against Riverside and Nov. 2 at home against Capital.
The Highlanders score at a 32.5 points per game clip with 63 against Lincoln County. Defensively, the Highlanders are one of the best, allowing only 9.8 points a game with two shutouts.
SPURLOCK'S SPLURGE: Wayne senior running back Brandon Spurlock had another big game Friday.
Spurlock rambled for 201 yards on only nine carries with touchdown runs covering 40, 9 and 22 yards in a 56-22 blowout of Poca.
He also went past 1,100 yards for the season.
What's really impressive is the Class AA No. 1 Pioneers (8-0) have been so dominating that Spurlock has carried the football only seven times in the second half of games.
"He's a very understanding kid," Wayne head coach Tom Harmon said. "Sometimes when you're up by that many points and they get tackled you kind of hold your breath. We've got a job to do, we've got to try to get better as we go.
"As this season progresses, we've got to make sure Brandon is able to make those runs late in games."
Wayne's next game is Friday at No. 18 Chapmanville, now 4-4 following a loss at home Friday against Tolsia, 40-32.
NEW WRINKLE: Spring Valley opponents know senior Elijah Wellman is double trouble when he either runs or blocks out of his fullback position. Friday night, the Timberwolves gave future opponents something else to worry about when Wellman lined up in the Wildcat formation, took a direct snap and raced for 25 yards on his first try at that wrinkle.
"That was real fun," said Wellman, who piled up 237 yards on 23 carries to go over 1,000 for the season and scored four times to power No. 12 Spring Valley past No. 7 Hurricane, 55-27, Friday night at Redskin Stadium. "You can see more open field. It's a good view."
Wellman's first carry from the Wildcat came on the team's third snap on its second drive. He also threw two passes, completing one that went for 11 yards to Colby Webb.
"It's something we've been looking at," Timberwolves coach Brad Dingess said. "It's another way to get the ball to Elijah."
Spring Valley snapped Hurricane's winning streak at three. Up front, the young, but physical Timberwolves overpowered Hurricane. Spring Valley piled up 636 yards on 54 attempts and went over 50 points for the first time.
"We talked about that," Dingess said. "We did it against a good, quality team."
"They just physically whipped us. We did everything we could defensively but in the end, their big horses on that line just whipped us. They are just so big," Hurricane coach Jeremy Taylor said.
On defense, the Timberwolves contained Hurricane's spread attack. Quarterback Austin Hensley entered the game with 1,605 yards passing and 18 TD strikes. Wide receiver Koi Turner led the Redskins in catches with 43 for 592 yards. Hensley connected on 14 of 22 passes for 143 yards and one interception. Turner had one catch for 10 yards.
"A lot of people say our weak spot is the way we defend the pass," Dingess said. "Our defense played really well."
STREAK STOPPED: Capital held George Washington tailback and Kennedy Award state player of the year frontrunner Ryan Switzer to a season-low 130 yards on 29 carries Friday and the Cougars beat the Class AAA No. 4 Patriots, 35-13, at Laidley Field. Switzer failed to score a touchdown, halting a 20-game streak of getting at least one TD.
ON TRACK: Gallipolis won Friday at Logan, Ohio, 23-14, to clinch a share of the SEOAL championship. That became reality when Chillicothe upset two-time defending champion Jackson, 14-13, to end a 14-game league winning streak for the Ironmen. The Blue Devils (7-2, 4-0 SEOAL) can win the title outright this week when Jackson (5-4, 3-1 SEOAL) visits.
ATHLETIC RECRUITING DAY: The University of Rio Grande athletic department will have an Athletic Recruiting Day on Oct. 28 on the scampus in Rio Grande, Ohio. Registration starts at 1:30 p.m. at the Lyne Center. Information on admissions, housing, financial aid will be available to prospective athletes. A campus tour is included, too. Some programs may offer tryout sessions. Contact details on the sports available at www.rioredstorm.com by clicking on the "Athletic Recruiting Day" link. For more details, contact the athletic department at 740-245-7293 or the admissions office at 1-800-282-7201.
David Walsh is a reporter for The Herald-Dispatch. Contact him at 304-526-2759 or firstname.lastname@example.org.