It’s that wonderful time of the year when football returns to Harry Stuart Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 pm in Lebanon, as the season will begin with Coal Bowl IX.
Coach Michael Webb and his Pioneers will play host to Coach Doug Hubbard’s Honaker Tigers. Lebanon fans have declared this game to be their Black Out Game as all Pioneer fans are asked to wear black.
Both teams have enjoyed some success in preseason action. The Tigers are coming off a 52-35 win over Eastside last week while the Pioneers notched wins over Twin Valley and Northwood. Lebanon leads the series with Honaker 38-15 overall. The Tigers earned the win last season to break Lebanon’s two game winning streak in the Coal Bowl.
Coach Webb will be looking to his seniors to provide the leadership this young team needs. “We return several players with a lot of experience. We will rely heavily on WR/LB Casey Martin, QB/DB Casey White, RB/LB Alden Ward, and RB/LB Fisher Martin.” The big play ability of WR/DB Logan Smith can’t be overlooked as he makes his return to the team this year. Hard hitting seniors OL/LB Kent Musick and OL/DL Dustin Baumgardner continue to bring stability and experience to the trenches.
When asked to describe his team, “A hard working team that will hit you”.
The one word that sums this year’s team up? “Family.”
When asked about his keys to the game, Webb said “Contain Hubbard, Dye, and Casey…we can’t expect to completely stop them but have to be able to contain them. Our offensive line has to play well to give those key guys time to do their thing.”
Honaker is the preseason pick by many to win the Black Diamond District this season. The Tigers are led by QB/S Levi Miller, WR/CB Chandler Hubbard, and RB/LB Trevor Dye. Miller was 8 of 18 for 118 yards and 3 TD’s against Eastside last week. Hubbard caught 2 of those while Dye carried the ball for 153 yards and 1 TD. While the Honaker defense did have it’s share of struggles last week against Eastside, the offense looked to be in mid-season form.
A 1992 graduate of Castlewood High School, I left the mountains of Southwest Va to spend over a decade in the Army. During that time I was blessed to play & coach football at various levels in South Carolina, Georgia, Massachusetts, and then over in Germany. I ended up with over 15 years of coaching and playing experience. These days I enjoy watching my son play. The athletes in Southwest Virginia are just as talented and gifted as those from other regions, but often they don’t get the coverage and exposure that others do. It’s my pleasure to help cover their games and hopefully assist them in getting the exposure they need to continue playing.