NOTE: This is the fourth and final schedule preview on a Tug Valley area team for the 2019 season, as the schedules for Belfry, Tug Valley, and Phelps High Schools were previewed earlier in the summer.
By JARRID McCORMICK
Williamson Daily News
RED JACKET - The Mingo Central Miners football team and coach Josh Sammons will once again play an extremely tough opponent to kick off their season on top of an already challenging Cardinal Conference slate of games.
The 10-game slate features contests against Cardinal Conference foes Wayne, Logan, Sissonville, Poca, Nitro, Scott, Herbert Hoover, Chapmanville, and Winfield but it is the season opening game against Class A Pikeville, which could be the toughest game of them all.
The Miners will travel to play the perennial Kentucky power in the 35th annual Pike County Bowl on Saturday, Aug. 31, at the Hambley Athletic Complex with kickoff scheduled for approximately 8:30 p.m.
The Panthers finished with a record of 11-3 in 2018 and were KHSAA Class A State Runner-up as they narrowly lost to Beechwood in the state title game 21-20.
Pikeville returns a ton of talent from the 2018 team but will have to replace star quarterback Connor Roberts. This will be the first ever meeting between the two schools.
Week two sees the Miners starts their Cardinal Conference games as each of the next nine contests come against Conference opponents.
The first of the nine conference games will also be the home opener for "Buck" Harless Stadium and it will come against a Class AA playoff team from a year ago in the Wayne Pioneers. The Pioneers went 8-3 in 2018 but lost in the opening round of the Class AA playoffs to Keyser.
The Miners are 4-4 all-time against Wayne having won each of the past four meetings, including a close 29-24 game a season ago.
Week three will send Central back on the road but for another short trek as they will travel across Jerry west Highway to Middleburg Island and play the Logan Wildcats.
Logan won the first two meetings in the series back in 2011 and 2012 but the Miners have won the last three, including 50-8 a season ago, to lead the series 3-2. Logan finished 4-6 in 2018.
Week four will see the Miners return to the friendly confines of the "Buck" for a lengthy stay as they will welcome the Sissonville Indians to town for the first game of a three week home stand that will span over four weeks.
The Miners are 6-1 all-time against Sissonville having won the last six meetings including a thrilling 39-36 shootout a season ago. The Indians finished 6-4 in 2018 but missed the playoffs.
The week five contest could arguably be the most important game on the regular season schedule for the Miners when they welcome the Poca Dots to Miner Mountain.
Coach Sammons and company will be looking for revenge as the Dots handed the Miners their lone conference loss a season ago with a 45-27 defeat in Poca.
Poca finished 9-2 a season ago after losing their final two games of the season after being bitten by the injury bug. They return a majority of the talent from a season ago and are expected to compete for the league crown once again. The Miners lead the all-time series 5-1.
After resting up on their bye week the week of October 4 MCHS will return to action on October 11 for their third straight home game against the Nitro Wildcats. This will also be Homecoming for the Miners.
Central has dominated the all-time series against the 'Cats leading 4-0 including a 65-26 win a season ago. Nitro finished 3-7 in 2018.
The following week will see MCHS take to the road for the first time in over a month as they will make the trip up U.S. 119 to Boone County and face the Scott Skyhawks.
The Miners have also dominated the Skyhawks winning all five meetings including a 58-6 shellacking in 2018. Scott finished 1-9 a season ago.
Week eight will see the Miners return home for their final regular season game at "Buck" Harless Stadium as they host Herbert Hoover for Senior Night.
The Huskies are the only team to be on Mingo Central's schedule every season since the school opened in 2011 and are still looking for their first win in the series as the Miners lead it 8-0. The Huskies finished 1-9 in 2018, including a 52-21 loss to MCHS.
In week nine the Miners will make another short trip up U.S. 119 as they head to Logan County and play the Chapmanville Tigers. The Tigers have yet to find success against the Miners falling short in all six meeting since the 2013 season.
Chapmanville finished 5-5 in 2018 including a 49-7 loss to Mingo Central at Miner Mountain.
The Miners will once again wrap up the regular season against Putnam County foe Winfield for the third consecutive season. Central has won all three meetings against the Generals including a 56-40 shootout at Miner Mountain a season ago.
This will be the Miners first trip to General Stadium since 2017 when they snuck away with a thrilling 56-50 win to keep their unbeaten season alive.
Preseason polls for the upcoming season should be coming out in the next few weeks and the Miners are expected to appear in the top five of that poll.
Fans that plan on attending Mingo Central home games at James H. "Buck" Harless Stadium should note that kickoff for home games on Friday night are once again set for 7 p.m.
Mingo Central 2019 Schedule
08/31 8:30 p.m. A - Pikeville, Ky
09/06 7 p.m. H - Wayne
09/13 7:30 p.m. A - Logan
09/20 7 p.m. H - Sissonville
09/27 7 p.m. H - Poca
10/11 7 p.m. H - Nitro
10/18 7:30 p.m. A - Scott
10/25 7 p.m. H - Herbert Hoover
11/01 7:30 p.m. A - Chapmanville
11/08 7:30 p.m. A - Winfield
Jarrid McCormick is a reporter for the Williamson Daily News. He can be reached by email at jmccormick@HDMediaLLC.com.