Game Preview: Point Pleasant Looking To Continue Hot Start Versus Wayne on Friday

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It is pretty uncommon for a high school football team to average more than 400 yards of total offense.  However, on Friday night there will be two teams that put up those numbers when the Point Pleasant Big Blacks (2-0) host the Wayne Pioneers (2-0), in what is also a rematch of a 2011 West Virginia state title game. 

The word dominant does not even begin to describe the Big Blacks’ play over the first two weeks of the season.  Their offense has put up video-game numbers, averaging 414 total offensive yards and an astounding 53 points per game.

“We play fast, and we try to keep people off balance,” Point Pleasant coach David Darst said.

Running back Cody Mitchell has been impressive so far this season, scoring four touchdowns in the first two games. However, a team does not run such a prolific offense with just one weapon. The Big Blacks had seven different players scored in their 52-0 rout of Ripley in their last game.

Darst also noted that Point Pleasant may have an advantage because most of the players on Wayne play both offense and defense, whereas most of the Big Blacks’ players only play on one side of the ball, keeping them fresher as the game goes on.

The Wayne defense does present Point Pleasant with a much more difficult challenge than anything they have faced so far this season, however. The Pioneers have allowed an average of 16 points per game in the first two weeks.

The strength of this Pioneers squad, though, is its offense. Like Point Pleasant, Wayne has been chewing up its opponents’ defenses so far this season, averaging over 530 yards and 30 points per game.  

Wayne has been able to move the ball extremely easily this season, but it has had trouble holding onto the ball. In its 20-14 win in week two win over Sissonville, the Pioneers coughed it up four times, running the team’s turnover total to rise to eight turnovers through only two games.

This bodes well for the Big Blacks, who forced two turnovers in their last game and shut out both of their opponents this season.

“We built this football program on defense, not offense,” Darst explained.

 Though these team’s offenses are the ones grabbing the headlines, the game could be decided on the other side of the ball.

“This game is going to come down to who’s playing really good defense and who’s got good special teams,” Darst noted.

The Big Blacks and the Pioneers will square off at 7:30 p.m. Friday.

'Gridiron Glory' airs every Friday night at 11:30 p.m. on WOUB. You can follow the show on Twitter @gridironglory, like the Gridiron Glory page on Facebook, and follow along on Instagram @woubsports. You can also join the conversation throughout the season by using the hashtag #GridGlory!