Danville’s B team Panthers off to hot start

Last updated: September 03. 2013 11:48AM - 2902 Views
Ron Gregory ronjgregory@gmail.com

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Danville’s B team Panthers are off to another hot start in the Boone-Lincoln Midget Football League. Danville is currently riding an 11-game winning streak, dating back to last season.

Winners of their first four games this year, the Panthers are in the middle of a two-week break before resuming play September 15. That date is the scheduled homecoming game with Buffalo.

In their season-opener, Danville defeated Guyan Valley, 28-8 before winning their second game of the year, 28-0 over Seth. The Panthers picked up a 50-0 win over Van before defeating Ramage, 48-0.

Following homecoming, the Panthers are scheduled to play at Duval, September 21; at Guyan Valley, September 29; and host Seth on October 5 to end the regular season.

B team playoffs are scheduled at Van on October 20. Championship games will be played at Seth, October 26.

* * * * * *

Well, it wasn’t exactly the start most local fans hoped for.

In fact, the first week of the regular season for Boone County’s three high school football teams could be termed a wipeout. All lost to place their season records at 0-1 going into week two of the season.

Most disappointing, probably, was Scott’s disastrous second half performance at Falling Rock against Cardinal Conference foe Herbert Hoover. Things couldn’t have gotten much worse for the Hawks in the second half of that game.

In the first half, Scott looked well on their way to an easy victory and a notch in their young belts for the 2013 season. They marched up and down the field, apparently at will against the Hoover defenders.

Then, unfortunately, the second half began. Hoover looked like a different team – and so did the Skyhawks. Scott appeared incapable of stopping the Huskies at any time during the final 24 minutes.

The game was over in Hoover’s favor, which brought widespread cheers from the home crowd, which was outnumbered by Scott fans in attendance.

* * * * * *

Nobody expected Hoover to defeat Scott, which may have carried on to the football team that was in control early.

Coach Shane Griffith tried everything in his arsenal to stem the tide but could not. He left the field disappointed at best.

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Now, all three local teams can only hope for better times this week at home. If Scott cannot beat lowly Class AAA Lincoln County, it may be a very long season indeed. After all, former Cardinal Conference member Point Pleasant scored 70 points in beating the Panthers last week.

Lincoln County is about as pitiful a high school team as the state has produced, particularly in Triple A. A loss to them would be a major league embarrassment.

* * * * * *

Lincoln County, following former Coach Cory Beck’s advice, has continued to downgrade its program hoping to find a level at which they can compete. This time out, the schedule is loaded with Double A teams.

* * * * * *

My long-standing suggestion has been that they seek membership in the Boone-Lincoln Midget Football League and hope they can handle the Danville Panthers.

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Herbert Hoover’s band continues what I consider one of the best – and legal – traditions ever in high school sports. Rather than thumping the Bible and defying Federal law, as some schools do, the Hoover band simply parades on the field before each game and plays “Amazing Grace.”

Since no words are spoken, it is impossible for anyone to truly be offended and the Constitution is adhered to throughout the playing.

I always commend Hoover’s administration and staff for continuing this tradition. It is refreshing and uplifting.

* * * * * *

It seemed like old home night for Republicans Friday at Hoover’s field. First, the initial coin toss was performed by House Minority Leader Tim Armstead, leader of legislative Republicans in the lower house. Armstead was widely praised by Hoover administrators for bringing funds to the school in his district. One item mentioned was funding to refurbish bleachers.

Armstead smiled through the pre-game presentation and then promptly tossed the coin to the advantage of the wrong team, Scott.

Still it made little difference, since the Skyhawks chose to fly from the stadium in the second half.

Also on the field was Assistant Attorney General Dan Greear of Charleston. He served as a game official and appeared to show no prejudice, Republican or Democrat.

Both Armstead and Greear are GOP leaders, with the former having run for Attorney General himself on the Republican ticket.

* * * * * *

As I have explained in earlier columns, this newspaper’s goal is to cover all Boone County sports. It gets difficult, though, when we cannot seem to get cooperation with some coaches and administrators.

It is impossible, or virtually so, for me to cover two or three county teams in distant locales. For example, I couldn’t reasonably be at both Falling Rock for the Scott Game and also travel to Van’s contest.

Repeated phone calls to Van coaches have not resulted in a game day set-up to get us statistics and more information on games. Hopefully, that will improve with time and I certainly plan to be in attendance at some Bulldog games.

In the meantime, fans are left with sketchy at best reports from us on Van football. That is not fair to fans or players, but we are doing the best we can do.

CHARLESTON — Noah Cottrill is on the move again.

* * * * * *

I am a professional journalist (whether that is apparent or not) and there are some standards I was taught in journalism school that are difficult to follow in real life in Southern West Virginia.

Journalists, as far as I know, have always been taught that they are not participants in activities and meetings they attend. Therefore, in a continuing effort to promote freedom of the press, we are taught not to “sign-in” when attending meetings or games.

Usually, a comment to that effect satisfies most school officials. Some do not even request a sign-in to begin with.

But Herbert Hoover, adhering apparently to the political philosophy of its namesake, does not take “no” for an answer. This is evidenced by Friday evening when I arrived for the Scott game. Unlike many representatives of the press, I openly display my West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission (SSAC) pass when I attend a game. It is ALWAYS looped around my neck.

I showed my pass to the Hoover ticket-taker only to be informed that “coaches have to sign-in.” I quickly informed her that I was not a coach but a member of the press. She said that didn’t matter. I had to “sign-in.”

Initially, I refused and walked on into the ballpark. Then I saw the vice-principal rushing to a nearby Deputy Sheriff to tell him of my offense. Although the officer did not take out his handcuffs or gun, it was clear he agreed with her that I needed to sign-in. We discussed the subject briefly as I learned that freedom of the press meant nothing to the cop. He just kept asking me, “what will it hurt to sign-in?”

At last, I said it would hurt little except for my perception that the press should not have to identify itself at public events. I reluctantly told him I would sign the sheet over my protests that it was “wrong” to do.

Those who fear that government is too big and asserts itself too often in everyday life can use this episode as proof thereof. There is no earthly reasonable explanation as to why I needed to sign their sheet. I have a press pass that says who I am and they saw it. If I was to go berserk during the game, I have no doubt they would all have remembered at least that I am a reporter for the Coal Valley News if they did not recall my name. I could not have gotten away with murder and walked away undetected.

So, what is the purpose of the sign-in? To show the administration’s power, I guess.

* * * * * *

Interestingly enough, when I checked the sign-in sheet later, I noted that Mark Martin was roaming the sidelines with a TV camera but had not signed in. Neither, apparently, had a Charleston Gazette reporter whose “signature” appeared at the bottom of the sheet as though reproduced.

* * * * * *

I guess those reporters were not the threats to humanity that I appeared to be.

* * * * * *

The Kansas City Chiefs have cut Scott High’s own Jordan Roberts from their roster. There is still great expectations for the former Skyhawk, however.

Meanwhile, Scott freshman Garrett Roberts showed he has the same blood running in him as Jordan Friday night at Falling Rock. He was the standout of the night for the Skyhawk squad.

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Call or email with your tips, rumors and story ideas. My cell number is 304-533-5185.

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