Pioneers host Wilkes Central tonight
by Steve Behr Sports Editor
The Pioneers opened the 2013 season on Aug. 17 against Alexander Central. Two road games and a bye week later, the Pioneers return home to face Wilkes Central in an endowment game beginning 7:30 tonight.
Watauga has played border rivals Ashe County and Avery away from home. Watauga also had a bye week between the games, which has kept them from playing a home game since the first week of the season.
Head coach Ryan Habich is anxious to return home for the first time in more than a month.
"It's been three weeks since we've played at home," Habich said. "It was a good first game for us. We're excited about it, but it's been awhile. It will be nice to not have to get on the bus and travel for a hour and a half."
It's the final game of the nonconference season for the Pioneers, who are 3-0 in 2013. Watauga opens its Northwestern Conference season on Sept. 27 against St. Stephens. It's homecoming weekend.
But up first is Wilkes Central, which is 0-3 after going 9-2 last season, 10-2 in 2011 and 10-4 in 2010. The Eagles, hurt by a 52-26 loss to Hibriten on Aug. 30, have been outscored 85-33 this season.
Watauga welcomed back quarterback Aaron Dobbins in the Pioneers' 57-36 victory over Avery on Sept. 13. Dobbins completed 7-of-11 passes for 220 yards and three touchdowns against the Vikings.
"With Aaron, he's able to make plays when plays are not there," Habich said. "That's a thing that you just can't coach."