Preview: Battle of Route 33 pits Chieftains against Buckeyes.

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The Logan Chieftains are not afraid of a little competition, especially against their route 33 rivals. 

Head coach Billy Burke believes playing tough opponents has prepared his team to thrive and pick up their first win at home against Nelsonville-York this Friday. 

“Getting back into the friendly confines of home is always pretty exciting,” Burke said, optimistically. 

So far this season, two of the squad’s losses have come during down-to-the-wire contests against Lancaster and Teays Valley.  And after Loudonville delivered a mighty blow to the Chieftains, some might wonder if Burke was feeling pressure.  He urged that this is not the case.

“We were in the exact same position a year ago; there’s no panic,” Burke said. 

In 2013, Logan started their SEOAL title season 1-3.  Burke thinks the team could very well mirror their past success. 

“We are better now than we were a year ago,” Burke added.

During practice this week, the Chieftains have worked on getting back to fundamentals.  Burke wants his team to cut back on penalties and mental errors against the Buckeyes and for his young men to, “play their game.” 

As for Logan’s opponent, Nelsonville-York is coming off a big conference win over River Valley.  Running back Alex Mount has been a big part of Nelsonville-York’s success thus far and Coach Burke has taken note.

“We’ve had some trouble stopping the run game,” Burke said regarding Logan’s weakness. “And that’s not uncommon with N-Y.” 

Burke is confident, however, in linebackers Dean Jordan and Bryce McBride to lead the Chieftain defense towards containing Mount and the Buckeyes. 

With only two weeks separating the Chieftains from conference play, Coach Burke said his honed in on one concept.

“When the whistle blows and the lights go on, it’s about the guys you’re out there with and making the big plays.” 

Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. in Logan.