FAIRMONT, W.VA (WDTV) - (Includes comments from Nick Bartic & Bryson Gilbert)
Nick Bartic has certainly set the bar high in his lone season as Fairmont Senior's head coach. His Polar Bears own a 12-1 record and they are just four quarters away from their first state title in 71 years. On Wheeling Island Friday night, he will be staring across the sideline at Bluefield's Fred Simon, a man who has been a head coach as long as Bartic has been alive.
Bartic had spent a decade on staff as an assistant coach, working a number of those years under head coach J.L. Abbott. He still seeks guidance from Abbott as the season has progressed.
Perhaps Bartic's toughest challenge this week is to keep his team from looking to far ahead, and thinking about claiming the trophy that eluded them 52 weeks ago.