The Mingo Central Miners will play their final regular season game of the season Friday night and it will be homecoming for the school as they host Mt. View.
Coach Yogi Kinder’s squad already has the most wins in a single season with a record of 7-2 heading into the contest. The Miners are heavily favored over the Golden Knights who come to Harless Stadium with a record of 1 – 8.
Mingo Central has a four game winning streak and has locked up a berth in the Class AA playoffs starting next week. Their seed will not be decided until this weekend. The Miners will likely end up either No. 8 or 9, but will need a little help from other teams to finish in the top eight.
The top eight teams host first round playoff games. If they finish 9th or below, they will hit the road for a first round game. This will be the school’s second playoff appearance. They made the post season last year at 5-5, but had to travel to the northern part of the state to take on highly ranked Keyser and lost that game to finish 5-6.
This is only the third season for the new school, which is a consolidation of Williamson, Matewan, Burch and Gilbert.
The Miners have a balanced rushing attack with sophomore Deonte Joplin leading the way with 777 yards on 123 carries this season and eight touchdowns. Junior Chance Lester has 529 yards on 82 carries and eight TDs. Senior fullback Dakweon Willis has rushed for over 340 yards and five TDs. Sophomore quarterback Stevie Hammond has been effective on the ground and in the passing game. He has over 200 yards rushing and nine TDs. He has thrown for eight touchdowns.
His primary target is Alex ‘Booger’ Lee who has hauled in six TD receptions and has nearly 475 receiving yards this year.
Kinder’s defense has been strong this season. Several times they have bent, but have not broken. The team’s turnover margin has also been solid this season.
There will be a homecoming parade Friday afternoon on the King Coal Highway. The highway will be closed during the afternoon hours for the parade.
The kickoff for the game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. The game can be heard on WXCC 96.5 FM with Joe Kinzer and Pedro Ledger.