Catholic’s Binegar ready for BACF

Photo by Jay W. Bennett Parkersburg Catholic and West Virginia’s head coach Lance Binegar looks on during Parkersburg Catholic’s versus Valley (Wetzel) last fall.

PARKERSBURG — The 26th annual Battle Against Cystic Fibrosis All-Star Football Classic kicks off at 7 tonight from Bill Hanlin Stadium in St. Marys, and the West Virginia all-stars are hoping to snap a two-game losing streak.

The man in charge of ending that drought is Parkersburg Catholic head coach, Lance Binegar.

In two seasons coaching the Crusaders, Binegar has been building up the program, and the chance to coach in this game is indicative of his hard work throughout a season which saw his team go 9-2 with a trip to the Class A playoffs. Binegar shared his thoughts on being the one to patrol the Mountaineer sideline in tonight’s clash.

“Oh, this is awesome,” Binegar said of the opportunity. “For me to be nominated to be the coach of this game, it just shows how my Catholic program is coming along. More people want to be a part of it, and that’s what I like.”

Binegar has good reasons to be happy with the growth of the Crusaders. A group of 22 players could end up on his roster for the 2019 season. That’s quite the jump from when they barely had enough players to field a team two seasons ago. In 2017, Binegar’s team was comprised of just 13 players. Last year, 17 Crusaders made up the roster for Binegar and his staff.

As for the BACF game, Binegar has multiple options at quarterback, and he plans to run the wildcat formation at times. One such option at QB is Catholic’s own, Ty Sturm.

Sturm found success under Binegar at running back, as he averaged 9.6 yards a clip en route to a senior season with 1,964 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns. Sturm was absent during Wednesday’s practice at PC’s football field, but Binegar still took the time to speak about what Sturm means to the upstart program.

“Him and Aidan Stotts were the only two seniors I graduated last year. We’ve battled through some crazy stuff,” he said of his time with Sturm. “There was the year before (last season), and then they (Sturm and Stotts) came back and brought kids with them (to play in 2018). It shows in the weight room and on the field that if you stick it out and ride the wave, you’re eventually going to end up on top.”

The Catholic head man is enjoying his time with this all-star group of athletes, and the laid back practices and fun times are a highlight for him. Although supremacy in the Mid-Ohio Valley is on the line, Binegar’s crew is making the most of getting to play together.

“To be honest, I like them all,” Binegar remarked about this roster. “We’ve got all kinds of different aspects of the game. I’ve got certain kids who can do one thing and other kids who can do other things. I’m just glad they came out and wanted to be a part of this, because it’s for a great cause.”

West Virginia holds a 15-10 series lead over Ohio, and Binegar will be on the sideline preparing his team for a sweet 16th win on Friday.