Football Buccaneers look to return to the win column against Spartans

Ben Ball (70) of the Buckhannon-Upshur football Buccaneers brings down a Hampshire ball carrier while Landon McLean (82) closes in on the play during last Friday nights contest. The Bucs will look to get back into the win column Friday night when they host Greenbrier East at home. Kick-off is set for 7:30 p.m.

TENNERTON – The Buckhannon-Upshur football Buccaneers will look to rebound from a disappointing loss to Hampshire last week as they host the Greenbrier East Spartans this Friday night at 7:30 p.m. at Freal “Red” Crites Memorial Stadium in a non-conference clash.

The Buccaneers will enter the game with a 1-2 record after the wheels came off the cart in their 58-6 loss to Hampshire.

“We used the term it was an avalanche last week,” remarked Buckhannon-Upshur head coach Duane Stoeckle. “It just kept getting worse and things were always bouncing their way. We shot ourselves in the foot numerous times. It just went wrong and sometimes you can’t fight out of it and we didn’t fight out of it.”

Stoeckle said he and his staff talked with the team on Monday to use the loss as a learning tool as they move forward.

“After watching the film, a lot of the things we did wrong we can correct,” stated Stoeckle. “We are a very young team. We can yell or scream at the team, or you can try to teach them. As a staff we have to teach better. We just didn’t execute very well against Hampshire. We know they are young team, but they have to keep working and fighting through adversity together. That’s the only way you get better. We have to start doing the little things right so we can start winning some football games. It’s still one step at a time, one play at a time and one game at a time.”

Stoeckle said the team responded well to the message sent on Monday.

“We watched film, had a practice and a nice lift afterwards,” noted Stoeckle. “I was really pleased with how they responded to what we said. They know too, the film doesn’t lie. They see it and want to get better. No one is trying to miss an assignment, but we have to keep working at it. I still love their attitude and they are still working hard.”

This week’s opponent, Greenbrier East, certainly won’t make it easy on Stoeckle’s young Bucs.

They enter the game with a 2-1 record and dismantling Wyoming East last week by a 56-0 score while the offense is averaging just under 40 points a game.

Stoeckle said offensively the Spartans will throw multiple looks at the Bucs from an empty backfield to an I-Formation.

The Spartan offense goes through sophomore quarterback Monquelle Davis.

Davis ran for 44 yards on just four carries and had two rushing touchdowns in their win last week.

With no need to throw the ball with a big lead, Davis went just three for six for 25 yards through the air last week.

“Davis does a really nice job for them,” remarked Stoeckle. “If the pass isn’t there, he will tuck it and run.”

The Bucs will also have to key in on is senior tailback Colby Piner. Piner gained 93 yards rushing on eight attempts with one score last week.

Stoeckle said the Bucs will have their hands full with this Spartan squad.

“They are a pretty solid team,” said Stoeckle. “They have nice size and are a well-coached football team by Ray Lee. We will have our hands full. We just must do the little things right. We need to execute offensively and put together some drives. The defense is close, but we just have to make tackles, especially on Davis and Piner. I feel it’s more about us though and what we do than what they do.”

Following their game Friday night with Greenbrier East, the Bucs will travel to Moundsville and visit John Marshall next Friday for a 7:30 p.m. kick-off.

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