Prep football: Herbert Hoover has some bite for this meeting with Lewis County
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Herbert Hoover and Lewis County expect a much different game than the meeting between the two schools last season.
Lewis County went on the road and earned an easy 48-7 victory over the Huskies last year on its way to its best season in program history, enjoying its first nine-win season and first playoff victory.
Both teams, however, are much different then their 2012 incarnations, and Hoover returns the trip to play the Minutemen at Lewis County at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Lewis County finished last year 9-3 and won a first-round playoff game over University before bowing out in the quarterfinals to George Washington. The Huskies went just 1-9.
"Last year we were a veteran team with mostly seniors and they were mostly young and had lost their starting quarterback (Brenden Holbrook) to an injury a few weeks prior," Lewis County Coach Eddie Vincent said.
"It was a tough night for them but I saw a talented team and I knew they would get better," he added. "They are much improved. We lost a lot of the older guys playing and only have about four starters back."
Meanwhile, Hoover returns most of its players from last season and Huskies Coach Tim Meyer feels his team is much more prepared this time around.
"We feel like we have made a lot of progress since last year," Meyer said. "The kids have responded well and we are making sure the kids are ready to play. It's a heck of a challenge, but they have stepped up and are getting geared up."
Both teams enter the game 1-1. Lewis County dropped its season opener to No. 6 University, 28-7, and then came back to beat Preston, 48-24, a week ago. Hoover earned a 40-35 upset victory over Scott in week one but dropped a tough 24-18 decision to Chapmanville last week, losing four fumbles in the second half.
Both games were home games for the Huskies.
"The kids have been great and working really hard," Meyer said. "The last two games we could be 0-2 or we could be 2-0. We are sitting at 1-1 though, and both teams we played were very good football teams."
Both coaches like the two-game series between the two schools and see the benefits.
"Playing a Triple-A school like Lewis County has its advantages because they are heck of a football team and the team gets geared up for that," Meyer said. "Plus, its bonus points toward the playoffs. It's a good situation."
"We picked up Hoover for a two-year deal," Vincent said. "Even though we are a Triple-A school and they are Double-A, the school size is similar. Plus the schools aren't that far apart. It's not a bad trip."
Hoover junior tailback Shaun Dotson is having a solid season so far. He is currently second in the area in rushing with 298 yards and three touchdowns on 50 carries. Dotson also has 106 yards receiving and another score.
Lewis County only returns four starters but is led by senior fullback Mark Metzgar, a 1,100-yard rusher last year, who is coming off a 156-yard performance on the ground last week against Preston. Senior Skylar Carlton leads the Minutemen offense at quarterback after being converted from wide receiver last year. Seniors Jordan Hall and Tyler Gump are three-year starters on the line.