Polar Bears ‘peaking at the right time’ preparing for first-ever meeting with the Dots


FAIRMONT, W.Va. – Fairmont Senior and Poca, two notably strong football programs, have never seen each other on the gridiron in program history until now.

A surprising fact, but these two teams are brand new opponents in the Double-A state semifinal.

“Well it’s the complete opposite. Last week we have a lot of familiarity with your opponent and this week it’s someone we’ve never played in school history,” Nick Bartic, Polar Bears head coach said.

Bartic said his team has been peaking at the right time and the things they have been working on throughout the season are finally falling into place.

“As the season went on, all of the lessons learned from some of the adversity that our guys had to handle. They were forced to mature a little bit and gain experience. That’s something we knew we were trying to develop as the season went on and now it appears to be paying off. We have guys healthy for the first time in a while also and it’s all kind of coming together. I think our team, I feel we are peaking at just the right time,” Bartic said.

The Dots and Polar Bears have one familiar opponent from the regular season, Herbert Hoover.

Poca fell to Hoover 28-0 while Senior won that game in the first round of the playoffs.

“They have a really solid program so you’re familiar with them but you see them on film and you just notice that one, they can throw the ball. That’s something they can do better than a lot of other teams that we’ve played. And they’re real balanced in their run to pass ratio. So just really consistent on offense and they do a good job of getting the ball to their playmakers,” Bartic said.

Fairmont Senior defensive end Eric Smith touched on what the defense will have to do in order to keep Poca uncomfortable.

“We’ll make sure to rush the outsides. Just so we can have the QB scrambling the whole time, rushing his passes so he doesn’t have time to relax,” Smith said.

Bartic also emphasized consistency, specifically in the offense.

The Polar Bears and Dots kickoff at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.

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