For years, Hurricane was beat before it ever stepped on the field against Capital.
The Redskins lost seven of the first nine meetings, with five losses by at least 21 points. But that all changed last year.
Hurricane's 14-7 win at Laidley Field shook a few skeletons out of the closet and gives the Redskins hope for tonight's matchup in Putnam County. Kickoff is set for 7:30.
"We can beat anybody if we play,'' said Jeremy Taylor, Hurricane's first-year coach. "We've got enough talent. We've just got to have the want-to - and that's what they did to them last year.
"If we could do what they did to them last year . . . we didn't do a whole lot on offense. We had about 200 yards. Where they beat them was defensively. I was watching that game on film this week and I just saw our guys swarming to the ball, getting after people. That was the difference.''
Each team could use a boost tonight following recent adversity.
Hurricane (2-2) was idle last weekend after dropping back-to-back games to Woodrow Wilson and George Washington. Capital saw its 3-0 start soiled last Friday with a 20-17 loss to South Charleston, which trailed 17-0 at halftime. It cost the Cougars, who dropped from sixth to 10th in the Class AAA ratings.
Capital coach Jon Carpenter thinks his players are more concerned with what happened last week instead of last year against Hurricane.
"Probably most of those guys' motivation comes from last week,'' Carpenter said. "Last year's too far away for them. It doesn't bother them as much as falling apart last week. They're anxious to get back and redeem themselves. They feel like they're a half away from being mentioned as a real good team.''
Another reason Capital would like to forget last year's game with Hurricane was the fact it lost its top two running backs to injury early in the game, a bout of misfortune that snowballed for the Cougars in the weeks to come. They lost several more key players and saw a 4-0 start disintegrate into a 5-5 season.