Pendleton County hopeful to play state quarterfinal game

Published: Nov. 19, 2020 at 5:48 PM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - The Pendleton County High School football team is hoping to take the field for a state quarterfinal game Sunday afternoon.

The Wildcats are currently scheduled to play Tygarts Valley in the WVSSAC Class A State Playoffs in Franklin at 1:30 p.m. Sunday. However, the status of the game is up in the air due to COVID-19 numbers in Randolph County, the home county of Tygarts Valley. Randolph County is listed as an “Orange” county in the latest West Virginia School Alert System: Saturday Education Map. Schools in counties labeled as “Orange” or “Red” cannot participate in athletic contests, they must be labeled “Gold”, “Yellow”, or “Green” to play. Pendleton County is labeled as “Green” in the latest map update. COVID-19 numbers are updated daily in West Virginia and Randolph County is trending towards “Gold” but the next Education Map update won’t come until Saturday evening (11/21). The results of the Saturday Education Map will determine if Sunday’s game can be played.

If Pendleton County is eligible to play and Tygarts Valley cannot, the Wildcats would automatically advance to the Class A state semifinals. But members of Pendleton County’s team say they would rather play the game and advance with a win on the field.

“We want to win every game we can,” said Pendleton County senior QB/DB Isaiah Gardiner. “We don’t go the easy way out. We want to win the game fair and square. That’s just how we are.”

Pendleton County senior lineman Josh Alt added: ““We’d rather play than just move on. We want as many games as we can. It’s a shortened season already. We want to play. We just want to get out on the field.”

If the game is able to be played, Pendleton County would have an opportunity to earn its way to the state semifinals on the field and continue to develop as a team. The Wildcats (6-2 overall) have won five straight games after a 1-2 start to the season.

“Just being able to play a game every week and get out there and be on the field and run your offense and play defense, I think it benefits you to be on the field every week,” said Pendleton County head coach Zac Smith.

As the Wildcats wait to learn if there will be a game Sunday, here are the possible scenarios for the state quarterfinal matchup against Tygarts Valley:

-Both teams can play and winner advances to state semifinals.

-Pendleton County can play. Tygarts Valley cannot play. Pendleton County advances to state semifinals.

-Tygarts Valley can play. Pendleton County cannot play. Tygarts Vally advances to state semifinals.

-Neither team can play. The game is declared a “no contest”. Both teams are eliminated from the state playoffs.

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