Looking for a win

East Fairmont’s Erik Starcher (22) and Jessup Biafore (77) converge on Bridgeport’s Sean Snider (12) during the Bees’ 34-13 loss last Friday.

Even mired in a 15-game losing streak, North Marion’s football team has one thing going for it tonight when East Fairmont visits.

History.

The Huskies have never in the history of the series between the two schools tasted defeat against the Bees on their home field in Rachel. The streak began with a 12-10 win in 1987, after the Huskies had used East-West Stadium as their home field in their early years,

East will be looking to bounce back from last week’s loss to Bridgeport and finally break the Huskies’ home-field dominance.

Teams will kick off the latest chapter of their rivalry at 7:30 tonight in Rachel.

For two teams with such opposite records, the Bees and Huskies come into the game with almost identical offensive statistics.

East is averaging 258.8 yards per game, while the Huskies clock in at 257.8 per contest.

The Bees depend mainly on the run, which is good for North Marion. The Huskies have allowed nearly 900 yards through the air up to this point in the season.

“We just don’t have the speed and quickness to cover people one on one,” North Marion head coach Gerry White said. “So you’re kind of in a Catch 22. You either sit back and defend or try to pressure. If you let them have all day to throw the ball, they’re going to find them anyway. So we’re kind of caught in the middle of everything.”

Bee quarterback Carter DeVault had his best passing game of the season against Bridgeport last week (9-for-17 for 155 and a touchdown), something East head coach Bill Haddox thought was a positive.

Cody Spickler and Nick Bonnett also had their best games of the season reception-wise for East.

“We did better passing,” Haddox said. “For the most part, that was our best game through the air. Spickler and Bonnett both made some real nice catches for us.”

The Bee defense has been the team’s saving grace this season and is allowing only 19.2 points per game and 243.2 yards.

They’ll face a North offense that is fairly even yardage wise (759 rushing to 530 passing), but the Huskies rely more on the run.

Erick Hinerman leads the rushing attack with 467 yards on 78 carries. Jason Jones, filling in for injured Brandon Riggs, has racked up 165 yards in three games.

The Huskies also got Garrett Kelley back against John Marshall, giving them another big, talented receiver to complement Alex Osborne and Jones.

“Now that gives us two big targets,” White said about Kelley’s return. “I’m real optimistic with the Osborne kid. Both of those kids. We’re optimistic if we can get those two ready, we might make a push here at the end and be a better football team.”

North, on the other hand, gets to deal with the three-pronged Bee rushing attack led by speedster L.T. Harbert, DeVault and Aaron Moore.

The trio has combined for 893 of East’s 959 rushing yards and have caused problems for each team the Bees has faced, with the exception of Bridgeport.

The Huskies have allowed 1,228 rushing yards so far this season and will face the tough task of slowing down the Bees’ ground game.

“We run the ball very well,” Haddox said. “We pass when we need to, but when you have running backs like we do ...”

E-mail Mike Bowen at mbowen@timeswv.com.

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