Photograph by Scott McCloskey
Peyton Marling and Wheeling Central have a giant recreation towards Petersburg Friday night time.

WHEELING — All of it comes right down to this.

After a 2-3 begin to the season, Wheeling Central — like clockwork — turned its season round.

The Maroon Knights are at present driving a three-game profitable streak — outscoring Weir, Union Native and Williamstown 103-51 throughout that spurt — and can now journey to Petersburg of their ultimate common season battle with hopes to assert a playoff spot.

Wheeling Central (5-3) is sitting at 18 within the newest SSAC Rankings — 0.37 factors out of the ultimate postseason spot — whereas Petersburg (5-3) is eleventh. The Prime 16 will advance to the playoffs.

Central coach Mike Younger mentioned his crew performed final week like their playoff lives trusted it.

“They’re up there within the ranks,” Younger mentioned of Petersburg. “We performed final week prefer it was a playoff recreation and we have now to do the identical this week. We have now a protracted drive down there and if we don’t win will probably be an extended drive again.

“I like our gameplan and I like what we’ve been conducting over the previous couple of weeks. Enchancment retains us going.”

The Knights are coming off maybe their largest recreation and win of the season, taking down state title hopeful Williamstown in dominant vogue 33-14. Now they wish to construct off that momentum within the ultimate week of the season.

“We executed the best way we needed,” Younger mentioned. “We threw the ball nicely, ran fairly nicely and (Central QB) Michael Toepfer had a breakout recreation. He performed nicely and the blokes rallied round him.”

Toepfer led the cost every week in the past with 159 yards passing and three touchdowns, together with a pair of dashing scores, whereas Jordan Waterhouse ran for 124 yards and caught two touchdowns for a mixed 70 yards.

Younger credit the crew’s rugged schedule for its current success.

“We play up,” Younger mentioned. “We’ve performed groups like Parkersburg, Poca and Fort Frye. I’m simply glad with how our youngsters are coming collectively as a crew and as a unit. I’m pleased with what our coaches have performed and the way we’ve performed in crunch time. It’s time to step up and play good ball.”

Petersburg is seeking to get again on the sphere after choosing up a win through forfeit every week in the past towards Tucker County.

The week prior, the Vikings fell 62-26 to Keyser.

Within the loss, Petersburg led 19-7 with 8:36 to go within the first half, earlier than getting outscored 55-7 the remainder of the best way.

Regardless of the setback, the Vikings acquired a stable efficiency from Peyton Day on the bottom, as he racked up 127 yards on 21 carries, whereas QB Cody Nuzum threw for 139 yards on 10 of 18 passing.

Younger and the Knights have additionally been making ready for the grass floor they are going to be stepping foot on in Petersburg by working towards on Pleasonton Ballfield.

“We’ve been working towards on grass as a substitute of turf,” Younger mentioned. “We have now to be prepared as a result of Petersburg runs the ball nicely, their quarterback is flexible and he throws nicely. They’re aggressive on protection, too. They swarm to the ball. We’ll must play good offense, safe the ball and put factors on the board and gradual them down.”

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