VINCENT - After two dismal weeks of football the Warren Warriors finally got back on track last Friday night when the Warriors edged visiting Parkersburg South 14-13.
The Warriors saw many of their problems from the two previous weeks, which resulted in losses of 47-7 and 42-7 to Portsmouth and Jackson respectively, disappear on the gridiron against South.
Now the challenge for the Warriors becomes repeating that process this Friday when Warren plays host to the visiting Logan Chieftains.
"We competed. We did some things to make improvements, but we need to take another step this week and make some big plays and keep improving," said Warren football coach Andy Schob.
In the two weeks prior to the South game the Warriors turned the ball over 12 times, six in each game.
Last week the royal blue and white didn't turn the ball over once, which was a pivotal part of the game.
Turnovers figure to be another key component to Friday night's contest as the Warriors take on a Chieftain team that is going through a rebuilding phase.
"Logan plays an extremely tough schedule. They have a good football team. They're very well coached. Despite what their record is we have to come in ready to play our best game," Schob said.
A tough schedule certainly applies to what the Chieftains have played through six weeks.
Five of Logan's first six opponents have at least a .500 record of 3-3 and three of those teams would be in the playoffs if they would begin today.
While the Chieftains may not have the same caliber of athlete that they have in years past, especially a year ago, but quarterback Jordan Jurgensmier is still a viable threat on the offensive side of the ball.
"They definitely have some athletes. They don't have a Patrick Angle or a Mason Mays, but Jurgensmier is a good athlete that can run and throw," Schob said.
Containing the Logan quarterback is a big key for the defense, which finally put together a complete game last week against Parkersburg South, including forcing three turnovers.
The Warriors aren't satisfied with where they're at now defensively. They know they need to continue improving defensively to keep opposing offenses in check.
"We're not where we need to be, but we definitely made improvements," Schob said.
Improvements are the name of the game for the Warriors right now.
Offensively the Warriors committed so many miscues in their two losses they went to an extremely conservative playbook against Parkersburg South.
Warren rushed the ball 28 times but picked up only 61 yards on the ground.
Quarterback Dylan Leffingwell completed 9-of-15 pass attempts for 117 yards but the Warriors were out-gained by South 244-178 in total offense.
"I think just because of what we did the two previous weeks we were making too many mistakes, both with penalties and turning the ball over. This past week we toned down the ball game," Schob explained.
Correcting some of those mistakes, now the Warriors have to get back to what carried them to success the first few weeks of the season.
"I think this week, hopefully, we'll be able to take those gains and strides (made last week) and get back to the whole playbook," Schob said.
The Warriors are counting on taking advantage of those corrections offensively so they can make a few more big plays this week.
Warren certainly has big play capability with receivers like Grant Venham, who has 28 receptions for 415 yards and three TDs, and Jeremy Fivecoait, who has 27 catches for 407 yards and five TDs.
Leffingwell has completed 83-of-147 pass attempts for 1,105 yards and 10 touchdowns. He's also been intercepted seven times.
Since the Chieftains like to play matchup, cover-one, man-to-man defense in the secondary Schob likes his team's ability to create some plays in the passing game.
"Our receivers against their secondary, that'll be a nice competitive matchup," Schob explained.
Passing the football is something the Chieftains are expecting the Warriors to do lots of, but they're not totally discounting the running game either.
"We're going to prepare for them on both sides of it and are leaning toward them being a little more balanced," said Logan football coach Kelly Wolfe.
The outcome of the matchup in the secondary between the Warriors receivers and the Chieftains secondary could go a long way towards determining the victor Friday night.
If it's the Chieftains, it would be the 13th straight year Logan has beaten Warren.
All told, in the 24-year history of the series, the Chiefs hold a 21-3 record against Warren. The last time the Warriors beat Logan was 1997 with the current streak of 12 straight wins by the Chiefs beginning in 1998.
"We're just excited to out and get another opportunity to compete. We're looking forward to another good football game Friday," Schob said.
Logan Daily News sports editor Craig Dunn contributed.