Sunday, December 7, 2014

Bowl Projections

Quick bowl projections after Florida State clinches the ACC Championship and a perfect record, at Midnight on Dec. 6.

Sugar Bowl (1/1): (1) Alabama vs. (4) Ohio State
Rose Bowl (1/1): (2) Oregon vs. (3) Florida State
Cotton Bowl (1/1): TCU vs. Ole Miss
Fiesta Bowl (1/1): Boise State vs. Arizona
Orange Bowl (12/31): Georgia Tech vs. Michigan State
Peach Bowl (12/31): Baylor vs. Mississippi State

Godaddy Bowl (1/4): Northern Illinois vs. Arkansas State
Birmingham Bowl (1/3): East Carolina vs. Florida
Cactus Bowl (1/2): Oklahoma State vs. Washington
Alamo Bowl (1/2): Kansas State vs. UCLA
TaxSlayer Bowl (1/2): Maryland vs. LSU
Armed Forces Bowl (1/2): Houston vs. Ohio
Outback Bowl (1/1): Minnesota vs. Georgia
Citrus Bowl (1/1): Clemson vs. Missouri
Foster Farms Bowl (12/30): Iowa vs. Arizona State
Belk Bowl (12/30): Notre Dame vs. South Carolina
Music City Bowl (12/30): NC State vs. Auburn
Texas Bowl (12/29): Texas vs. Arkansas
Russell Athletic Bowl (12/29): Duke vs. Oklahoma
Liberty Bowl (12/29): West Virginia vs. Tennessee
Holiday Bowl (12/27): Nebraska vs. USC
Pinstripe Bowl (12/27): Boston College vs. Penn State
Independence Bowl (12/27): North Carolina vs. Texas A&M
Sun Bowl (12/27): Louisville vs. Utah
Military Bowl (12/27): Virginia Tech vs. Cincinnati
Bitcoin Bowl (12/26): Miami (FL) vs. UCF
Quick Lane Bowl (12/26): Pittsburgh vs. Illinois
Heart of Dallas Bowl (12/26): Rutgers vs. Rice
Hawaii Bowl (12/24): Fresno State vs. Louisiana Tech
Bahamas Bowl (12/24): Marshall vs. Western Michigan
Poinsettia Bowl (12/23): San Diego State vs. Navy
Boca Raton Bowl (12/23): Western Kentucky vs. Central Michigan
Miami Beach Bowl (12/22): Memphis vs. BYU
Camelia Bowl (12/20): Toledo vs. South Alabama
Idaho Potato Bowl (12/20): Bowling Green vs. Utah State
Royal Purple Bowl (12/20): Air Force vs. Stanford
New Mexico Bowl (12/20): Colorado State vs. UTEP
New Orleans Bowl (12/20): UL Lafayette vs. Nevada

Friday, November 14, 2014

Week 12 preview/playoff predictions

The new season is upon us for everybody. Playoffs begin Friday for all 4A schools in SC, and for 3A and smaller schools, they will be in the second game of the playoffs. Anything can happen in the playoffs. Major upsets, surprise teams and players, and lots of great games.

49 games in SC this week: 49 predictions.

Fort Dorchester 28, Gaffney 21 (very close game, Gaffney will play tough)
Summerville 27, Sumter 26 (another one-possession game)
White Knoll 34, Lexington 21 (White Knoll with revenge after last week's tough loss to Lexington)
Ashley Ridge 35, Hillcrest 31 (Upset #1, AR on a lot of momentum after last week's W over Fort D)
Dutch Fork 38, Mauldin 13 (Dutch Fork is on its game)
Dorman 30, Fort Mill 24 (Dorman hasn't lost a road game all year, don't expect that to change)
Byrnes 38, Boiling Springs 10 (As region rivals, Rebels will be amped up)
Northwestern 35, Wando 7 (Northwestern has Dupree Hart, Wando has lots of banged up players)
Goose Creek 34, River Bluff 13 (Gators struggle early, pull away in 2nd half)
York 28, Westside 20 (Upset #2, York's won 3 of 4 while Westside is not used to big stage)
Colleton County 19, Westwood 14 (Upset #3, Cougars have steadily improved while Westwood is another school not used to big stage)
Greenwood 28, Laurens 16 (Greenwood is used to the playoffs, expect them to make run)
South Florence 34, Blythewood 6 (South Florence is one of best teams in state this year, and have won 9 straight since Fort D loss)
North Augusta 30, Cane Bay 14 (North Augusta has stronger players)
Stratford 27, Socastee 13 (Stratford has been one of most improved teams in Lowcountry from start of year, don't expect that to change)
Spartanburg 27, Riverside 20 (another close game between region opponents, will be a good one)
AC Flora 38, Lancaster 7 (AC Flora is one of best teams in Midlands, don't expect much to change in 2nd round)
Wren 48, Emerald 20 (Wren is undefeated, at a tough place to play, Hurricanes pull away in end)
Seneca 23, South Pointe 20 (Upset #4, Seneca upset Chapin in OT last week, expect their roll to continue)
Greer 13, Belton-Honea Path 3 (Undefeated Greer rolls on in defensive battle)
Hartsville 21, Georgetown 20 (Hartsville and Georgetown play in a very tough game, home team survives)
Berkeley 33, Midland Valley 27 (Berkeley has steadily improved this year after slow start, will take this one)
Marlboro County 14, Swansea 7 (Upset #5, Marlboro has been in playoffs each year since '04 and knows how to win)
Myrtle Beach 24, Hanahan 21 (Great game in the Grand Strand, Seahawks escape with late TD)
Fairfield Central 27, Strom Thurmond 6 (Fairfield with 10 wins in a row, will get #11)
Woodruff 38, Newberry 19 (Woodruff bounced back last week, expect it to continue)
Dillon 45, Waccamaw 0 (Dillon is one of the best programs in state regardless of classificiation)
Ridgeland-Hardeeville 24, Loris 19 (Loris's long bus ride will hurt them early, and R-H will prevail)
Chesnee 30, Keenan 13 (Chesnee hasn't lost since August 22)
Abbeville 14, Ninety Six 13 (Upset #6, Abbeville lost to Ninety Six by 3 points three weeks ago and will bounce back)
Andrews 21, Woodland 16 (Andrews rolls on after a nice win last week against Bishop England)
Timberland 40, Whale Branch 0 (Timberland may be most dominant team in state. Allowed 64 points all year)
Christ Church 34, St. Joseph's 7 (Christ Church has been dominant all season, don't expect that to change)
McBee 31, Williston-Elko 30 (Very close game between these two 1A schools, McBee escapes at home)
Bamberg-Ehrhardt 27, St. John's 21 (Bamberg-Ehrhardt is the better team even though they're at St. John's home field)
Allendale-Fairfax 27, Hemingway 0 (Allendale-Fairfax is a very dominant 1A squad)
Lamar 20, Ridge Spring-Monetta 8 (Lamar gets the win at home)
Hunter-Kinard-Tyler 24, McCormick 7 (McCormick only won three games this year before last week's upset, H-K-T is proven at home)
Timmonsville 20, Lake View 14 (Lake View not as strong as previous Lake View teams, Timmonsville blew out Military Magnet last week)
Estill 34, Cross 23 (Estill has been a very good team this year)
Richard Winn 49, Andrew Jackson 9 (Richard Winn has scored 660 points this year in 12 games)
Carolina Academy 45, Clarendon Hall 42 (Carolina Academy gets a win on the road)
Williamsburg Academy 34, Holly Hill 10
Curtis Baptist 39, Dillon Christian 19
Orangeburg Prep 28, Florence Christian 21
Northwood Academy 52, Calhoun Academy 6
Hammond 20, Ben Lippen 14
Laurence Manning 30, Wilson Hall 14

Enjoy the games!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Week 11 preview/wk 10 review

We are finally at the end of the season for 4A schools, while all other schools are in playoffs. The season in high school football goes by so fast, but it has been a very interesting one to date.

There have been many surprises this year, but Goose Creek and Stratford meeting up in an end of season battle royale for the Region 7-4A title is not one. Bishop England starting 0-6 was a surprise. Now, they are 4-6 and in the playoffs. Another surprise was Berkeley. They started 1-4, and people were looking to force Jeff Cruce to resign. Now, they finished the season 6-4, with a region title in hand, and will host a second round of playoffs if they beat Dreher Friday night.

Lincoln is in the playoffs for a second year in a row. St. John's is the top seed in the Class A Division I Lower State bracket, and has home field advantage throughout the playoffs. The SCISA bracket is also interesting. This week, I will change up from my normal preview style and focus on playoff scenarios for 4A teams. Ten of the eleven local 4A schools still have a chance at the playoffs. Only Bluffton has been knocked out.

Goose Creek, Stratford, Fort Dorchester, and Summerville have already clinched berths. The others will be decided this week. There are 27 automatic berths to the 4A playoffs, 5 at-large.

Many of these scenarios come from the posters at SCpreptalk who have made playoff scenarios. Per that scenario, six of the eight region champs would be in the Division I bracket of the playoffs. In order of likelihood:

Goose Creek- Host Stratford (4-0 in region) this week. With win, will likely be #1 seed in their section of the playoffs, with home field as long as they're in the playoffs. Would host last seed in their bracket, likely an upstate team. A loss would move them to the #3 seed, and two home playoff games.

Fort Dorchester- A win over Ashley Ridge would give the Patriots a #1 seed on their side of the playoffs, hosting throughout. Even a loss probably would keep them near the top of the line.

Stratford- Win, #1 seed likely. Loss, still a #3 seed in their bracket.

Summerville- In playoffs after last week's win at Ashley Ridge. A win against Bluffton, win less in region, would give them a likely first round home game. A loss could mean a road game.

Ashley Ridge- Likely in playoffs. A win against Fort Dorchester would help their seed a bit, in SCpreptalk's projections they are a 12 seed. A loss would likely hold their seed there.

Here is where it gets tricky:

Wando- Likely has enough points to get in as an at-large due to playing Lexington and White Knoll in non-region play. A win over James Island likely gives them a 9-11 seed, and a first round road game. A loss, and things could get tricky. A Cane Bay win and a Wando win gives Wando an automatic 3rd. Wando is likely in.

Cane Bay- Tricky here with Cane Bay. Multiple scenarios where they could be in or out. A Cane Bay win over West Ashley and a Wando loss, Cane Bay gets an auto bid for 3rd. A Cane Bay win coupled with a Wando win also gets them in. A loss to West Ashley, and they could be in trouble on points. Basically, Cane Bay needs a win to stay in comfortable position.

Colleton County- Most of the media thought the Cougars had clinched last week. That is not the case. They still have to rely on getting enough points in order to get in. From EHSMeanGreen on SCPT: One particular scenario has Mauldin tied with Colleton County for the last At-large spot in the playoffs (32.5 pts).
(If Mauldin loses to Boiling Springs they will have 32.5 pts; CC has finished their season and are in the clubhouse at 32.5 pts.)
--The tiebreakers could get very deep for these teams.--
Colleton County needs to pull for 3A opponents Beaufort and O-W in the 3A playoffs. (They could make the difference)
---opponents wins and losses could determine the last spot. So Colleton County could have to rely on 3A schools in their playoffs to get in the 4A playoffs.

West Ashley- Rather simple scenario for West Ashley. If they beat Cane Bay, and Wando beats James Island, the Wildcats are in the playoffs.

James Island- If the Trojans beat Wando, and West Ashley beats Cane Bay, the Trojans are in the playoffs due to the head to head tiebreaker (beat West Ashley).

You got that all straight?

Now onto everyone else. From Doodle's Doodles. Favorite is first team listed. 3A:

Hartsville 285.8 Or'burg-Wilkinson 209.9 38
Georgetown 203.6 Airport 199.7 2
Berkeley 239.4 Dreher (15th in MaxPreps 3A poll)
Beaufort 213.6 Marlboro County 209.4 3
Hanahan 236.2 Lakewood 199.2 19


Lake Marion 192.1 Waccamaw 177.4 8
Ridgeland-Hardeeville 200.3 Garrett 169.9 15
Woodland 198.2 Johnsonville 177.3 11
Andrews 199.2 Bishop England 181.7 9
Whale Branch 189.1 Barnwell 179.8 5
Timberland 260.1 Academic Magnet 170.1 45


St. Johns 185.3 Latta 180.1 3
Hemingway 220.5 Calhoun County 151.9 35
Timmonsville 137.2 Military Magnet 119.2 9
Cross 178.6 Branchville 145.6 17
Estill 205.9 Lincoln 131.6 38


Hammond 205.9 Pinewood Prep 137.6 34
Ben Lippen 174.5 Porter-Gaud 159.8 8
Laurence Manning 191.6 Cardinal Newman 157.4 18
Wilson Hall 163.5 Heathwood Hall 130.3 17

Florence Christian 200.6 St. Andrews 68.2 67
Hilton Head Christian 142.4 Orangeburg Prep 130.1 6
Northwood 187.2 Thomas Sumter 113.1 37
Calhoun Academy 137.8 Bethesda 118.7 10

Williamsburg 149.1 Dorchester 112.7 18
Hilton Head Prep 150.9 Holly Hill 131.7 10
Curtis Baptist 142.1 Trinity-Byrnes 118.2 12
Dillon Christian 134.5 Colleton Prep 123.7 6

Richard Winn 133.1 St. Johns Christian 84.1 25
Andrew Jackson Ac. 138.4 Faith Christian 97.9 20
Patrick Henry 139.5 Carolina Academy 130.1 5
Clarendon Hall 123.4 Cathedral 96.5 13 

Enjoy the football!
Hartsville 285.8 Or'burg-Wilkinson 209.9 38     Georgetown 203.6 Airport 199.7 2     Berkeley 239.4 Berea 183.3 28 - See more at:
Hartsville 285.8 Or'burg-Wilkinson 209.9 38     Georgetown 203.6 Airport 199.7 2     Berkeley 239.4 Berea 183.3 28 - See more at:

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Stretcher and paramedics called to Detroit Red Wings dressing room?

In a very cryptic tweet from Ottawa Senators play by play guy Dean Brown, a stretcher and paramedics have been called to the Detroit Red Wings dressing room.

: A stretcher and paramedics have just been called to the Detroit dressing room??

@detroithockey96: Postgame interviews on FSD don't look like anyone is being carted off on a stretcher.

@Pammerhockey: Paramedics have left the #Wings area and thankfully the stretcher is empty. Do not know exactly what occurred. All is quiet. @PxPOttawa

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Week 10 preview/wk 9 review

Hard to believe, but the regular season is almost over. 4A teams have two games left in the regular season while everyone else closes the season this week. High school football season seems to move faster than any other season. We started practice in 90s heat August 1 for SCHSL schools. This Friday is Halloween. In 89 days, non-4A schools played their entire ten-game regular season schedule.

4A schools play eleven games; no other state in the nation plays as many as eleven regular season games. Some play as few as eight; 4A schools pack eleven games into eleven or twelve weeks. That is why teams have begun to play on week 0. Fort Dorchester has a bye week this week before next week's crucial game against Ashley Ridge, while Ashley Ridge has to play Summerville. It can be a major advantage.

This is the full schedule from WCBD:

Goose Creek vs West Ashley

Stratford vs James Island

Wando vs Cane Bay

Ashley Ridge vs Summerville

Bluffton vs Colleton County

Hanahan vs Berkeley

Beaufort vs Orangeburg-Wilkinson

Hilton Head vs Stall

Whale Branch vs Battery Creek

Academic Magnet vs Bishop England

Garrett vs North Charleston (Thursday, 5:30)

Cross vs St. John's

Military Magnet vs Baptist Hill

Lincoln vs Burke

Timberland vs Lee Central

Georgetown vs Wilson

Woodland vs Wade Hampton


Northwood vs First Baptist

Porter-Gaud vs Pinewood Prep

Colleton Prep vs Thomas Heyward

Dorchester vs Curtis Baptist

Palmetto Christian vs St. Andrew's

I will talk about the top 11 Lowcountry games this week, the games that mean the most on this Halloween night.

1) Hanahan at Berkeley: One of the biggest games of the year in high school football in Lowcountry. The winner will win the Region 8-3A title, and earn home field advantage through the first two rounds of the playoffs. Both teams are on winning streaks of four games leading up to this battle of the final night of their regular season. Fagan or Dress? What QB plays best will probably win this game.

2) Summerville at Ashley Ridge (TV game): Very important game for Summerville tomorrow night. The region could be determined with this game. Fort Dorchester wins the region with a Summerville win, and Summerville most likely finishes second. With an Ashley Ridge win, their game against Fort D next week is for the Region 8-4A title, and Summerville probably would finish 3rd in their region after being looked at as one of the top teams in the state preseason. This has turned into a pretty good little rivalry over the past few years, and don't expect anything less.

3) Goose Creek at West Ashley: Goose Creek puts their perfect region record on the line against a game West Ashley team. West Ashley has suffered some very tough luck in their last two region games. They led James Island much of the second half on the road, and missed two extra points last week in a one-point loss at Stratford. Instead of being right in the middle of the playoff hunt, West Ashley is 3-6 and playing for pride. Goose Creek can't let up before Stratford next week.

4) James Island at Stratford: 6-3 James Island has had a resurgent season this year. Last week, they lost at Cane Bay 14-7. Many James Island fans say it was a disputed game because they think Cane Bay manipulated the clock to their advantage. This game will be the Trojans fourth straight Homecoming games over the last four weeks. Very few if any schools in the state have had to do that. Stratford has to win this game to set up next week's showdown. Stratford is 7-2 and 3-0 in the region, but their last two region wins have been in five overtimes and by one point. There is little margin for error.

5) Wando at Cane Bay: 4-5 Wando has had a ton of injuries this year. They have fought hard though in every game. 4-5 Cane Bay has improved throughout the season, and last week against James Island played one of their best games of the year to earn the seven-point win. Cane Bay can set up their place in the playoffs with a win, as the James Island win was big in determining the #3 spot for their region.

If Cane Bay beats Wando and West Ashley next week, they are #3. James Island most likely has to win out and have Cane Bay lose one game to make the playoffs, while West Ashley has to win both of their remaining games and have James Island and Cane Bay lose at least once to have a chance. With the convoluted points system in 4A football, this may or may not be right. I will have an essay on this after the season.

6) Colleton County at Bluffton: Colleton County closes out their regular season with a game at Bluffton. The arduous region schedule has taken a toll on them, as at 4-6, they need a win at Bluffton to keep their playoff hopes alive. Strangely, they close the season this week, as their bye week is next week. Bluffton has had a very disappointing season. They are 3-6, and the forfeit loss to Battery Creek started it off. They were gashed last week at home by Fort D, 34-0, and have lost their last 3 games by at least 30 points.

7) Beaufort at Orangeburg-Wilkinson: Beaufort and Orangeburg-Wilkinson are battling for the third spot in the Region 8-3A race. Beaufort is 5-4, looking for a winning record, while Orangeburg-Wilkinson, on the other hand is 7-2 having suffered tough losses to Berkeley and Hanahan. This will be an important game tomorrow night. Both teams will get in the playoffs no matter what.

8) Bishop England at Academic Magnet: Now, with a superintendent let go because of what happened at Academic Magnet, the school can finally start to move on from the crazy last couple of weeks. They have one of their toughest games of the year, against a Bishop England team that has suddenly won three straight games. Last week, BE only completed two passes against North Charleston but still put 48 on the board thanks to Drew Pampu's 137 yards rushing.

9) St. John's at Cross: A battle for the region title in Region 6-1A. Cross and St. John's are both undefeated in the region, and a win for either will mean a very high seed in the playoffs and multiple home games. Huge game in Berkeley County.

10) Lee Central at Timberland: Undefeated Timberland closes their regular season Friday night hosting Lee Central. The Wolves have only allowed 57 points in 9 games. The 15 points Berkeley scored September 27 are the most they've allowed all season. They've allowed 7 points since then.

11) Pinewood Prep at Porter-Gaud: This game is an important SCISA battle with intrigue as 5-5 Porter-Gaud battles 4-6 Pinewood Prep. If Porter-Gaud wins, they earn a winning record, while Pinewood Prep would beat their local rivals. 

Enjoy the football!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Oscar Taveras killed in car wreck

Star St. Louis Cardinals outfield prospect Oscar Taveras has been killed in a car wreck in the Dominican Republic Sunday night.

This is per numerous sources in the Dominican Republic.

Confirmed: Cardinals' prospect Oscar Taveras was killed in a car accident along with his girlfriend in Puerto Plata.

From @Ligadomcom:

From various sources Cardinals' prospect Oscar Taveras has died in at car accident with his girlfriend, the player was driving.

Confirmed by his family, Cardinals' Oscar Taveras has died in car accident he was driving from Sosua to Puerto Plata (DR)

Taveras was the #3 prospect in baseball, and in 80 games for the Cardinals in 2014 batted .239 with 22 RBIs. Taveras was only 22 years old.

From diariodigital:

The player of the Cibao Eagles and the Cardinals have died Sunday night in a traffic accident , according to broadcast media in different versions. The version has not been confirmed by an official source but attributed to his agent Bryan Mejíavhaber confirmed the death of baseball player. The accident occurred on the highway between Sosua and Puerto Plata.

He was born in 1992 in Puerto Plata. The Chain of Las Aguilas reviewed the rumor of the accident and hinted that three other passengers were involved and in the car with Taveras.

But they were careful to confirm the outcome of the case occurred Sunday night, during the broadcast of the game between Aguilas and Licey which had to be suspended due to rain in the fifth inning, with the Eagles winning.

From @hgomez27, a reporter in the Dominican. Oscar Taveras was in Jamao River and on the way to Puerto Plata, had a fatal accident in Cabarete. His girlfriend also died

Friday, October 24, 2014

Week 9 preview/wk 8 recap

It has been a very interesting week in Lowcountry high school football, as the big story is the Bud Walpole story at Academic Magnet. This story has moved from a local sports story Monday night to a local news story now to a regional news story, and onto several national websites.

Walpole has been asked to resume his job as coach, starting Thursday. A link for those few people who haven't seen this story:

There has also been a game moved this week. Summerville and Colleton County were supposed to play at Summerville at 7:30 Friday night. The game has been moved to 6pm because of gang rumors. Rival gangs from Colleton County were supposed to go to the game, and this caused the game to be delayed. This is Summerville's homecoming game, and people are very mad because it has never happened before at Summerville, and because the school could lose thousands of dollars in revenue with the game being moved.

People also feel that the innocence of high school football is being questioned with all of this. Hey, Colleton County gangs. It's 2014. Your high school has done much better this year. Worry about football and having pride in your former school instead of trying to shoot each other up at a football game.

On with the games:

High School Football Schedule - Week 9

Goose Creek vs Wando: A very big game in 4A. Goose Creek winning this game will give them a clear path to the Region 7-4A title, only having to win their next two games (West Ashley and Stratford) to win the title. Wando badly needs this to avoid making it a very tough time to make the playoffs.

Stratford vs West Ashley: Stratford is still undefeated in region, and in the Marion Bowl, Bobby and Joe will battle each other for supremacy. West Ashley had a very tough loss last week at James Island, and needs a win badly in order to stay at one region loss and keep a good chance at the playoffs.

James Island vs Cane Bay: The 6-2 Trojans are one of the biggest surprises in SC this year. They beat West Ashley last week by seven, and now head to a hungry Cane Bay team on their homecoming. Both schools can greatly boost their playoff chances with a win.

Ft Dorchester vs Bluffton: Fort Dorchester makes the long trip to Bluffton, trying to move to 3-0 in the region, while Bluffton needs a win to avoid a losing record on the season.

Summerville vs Colleton County - Kick-off at 6pm: Big game in Summerville Friday evening. Summerville must have this game in order to get a good playoff seed. The vultures have been circling around the Green Wave program the past few weeks with back to back losses. Colleton County can greatly boost their playoff chance with a win.

Hanahan vs Beaufort: Hanahan and Beaufort play in an important battle. A Hanahan win would set up a winner-take-all region battle next Friday night. Beaufort winning would keep their chances alive for a region title.

Berkeley vs Stall: Berkeley needs this win to force that winner-take-all game. Stall has scored seven points in their last four games, with last week being a 68-7 loss to Hanahan.

Orangeburg-Wilkinson vs Hilton Head: O-W and Hilton Head were front runners headed into region play, but now they are struggling. Loser could be out of playoffs.

Whale Branch vs Garrett: Whale Branch had a big win against Academic Magnet last week. Garrett has lost back to back games in region play.

Academic Magnet vs Battery Creek: Magnet is ready to play after the Walpole fiasco enveloped them in the past few days. Now they have a home game at the Danny Jones Complex against a Battery Creek side that badly needs a win.

Bishop England vs North Charleston: Bishop England has played better in the last two games, getting their first two wins, and now are actually tied for second in their region. North Charleston is better than last year, but still have tough sledding through their region play.

Cross vs Lincoln: This game is intriguing because Cross is undefeated in the region and has to travel to Lincoln, who started 2-1 but are now 3-5. They beat Baptist Hill last week though, so an upset against Cross could actually help them in chances for playoffs.

St. John's vs Military Magnet: St. John's won last week against Burke. Military Magnet was shut out at Cross. This is an important game in their region.

Baptist Hill vs Burke: The winner of this game will earn their first win of the season in their second to last game.

Timberland vs Andrews: Important game in Timberland's region, as Andrews is perfect in the region just like Timberland, and Andrews gets Timberland on their home field.

Georgetown vs Myrtle Beach: 6-2 and 2-1 Georgetown battles undefeated Myrtle Beach in a very big game on the Grand Strand. Tons of playoff implications.

Woodland vs Silver Bluff: Woodland lost last week at Barnwell, they hope to bounce back this week.


Northwood vs Bethesda: Undefeated Northwood Academy has a big game on the road against Savannah's Bethesda Academy.

Porter-Gaud vs L. Manning: Porter-Gaud is 5-4, and hosts Laurence Manning in a very big game in their region.

Pinewood Prep vs Cardinal Newman: Pinewood Prep has lost two straight. They hope to bounce back in a home game against Cardinal Newman, their senior night.

Palmetto Christian vs First Baptist: Another battle of win less teams. Both schools 0-8. They have to get one today!

Enjoy the games!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Academic Magnet football coach Walpole asked to resume coaching duty

Breaking Wednesday afternoon, 3:40pm from Bill Sharpe of Channel 5: Chairwoman of Chas. Co. Schools tells me expect a announcement today that Bud Walpole is reinstated as Football coach at Acad. Mag. Bud Walpole gets his job back this afternoon after meeting with seupt. McGinley,according to School board sources. Chairwoman of Chas. Co. school board says no need for board to meet if Dr. McGinley offers Bud Walpole his job back, this afternoon. Expect announcment soon from CCSD that Bud Walpole gets his old coaching job back from Supt. Dr. McGinley, according to school board chair.

Walpole has led Academic Magnet to become one of the surprise stories in Lowcountry high school football this year. The team is 6-2. He has been the head football coach at the school since 2005.

This is the statement from Dr. McGinley:

Coach Andrew Rusciolelli will serve as the interim head football coach. Coaches Steven Kamp and Gary Weart will be the assistants for the two remaining games of the season, the statement said.

They are practicing today: Jeff Hartsell of the Post and Courier said police kicked media off campus at Academic Magnet before football practice.

Bud Walpole statement from Hartsell: AMHS coach Bud Walpole statement: "truly sorry to anyone whom my actions or in actions may have offended." "I bear ultimate responsibility for any actions our player take as a group." "Even though their actions were not meant to be offensive we need to be aware of how our actions are perceived by others."

Scott Eisberg: McGinley- Mon Oct 13th allegation brought to McGinley's attn. Watermelon actions accompanied by monkey sounds. AcMag principal investigated, told McGinley coaches didnt feel any racial undertones to what was being done with watermelon ritual. Team brought to lecture hall on October 16, kids were individually interviewed while being detained.

Happened on 4 or 5 occasions, tradition that team participated in after victories with watermelon smashing. Initiated by seniors before Military Mag game. Face was drawn on watermelon. Given name for each game. 29 students, HC and 2 asst's interviewed. McGinley says the responsibility lies with adults, should not have been sanctioned. Fired Walpole.

McGinley has not yet talked to Bud Walpole. She will and then talk to board whether to fire or reinstate head coach Bud Walpole. Walpole was also fired as the women's basketball coach. Coach Walpole didn't know that the players put a face on the watermelon.

Eisberg says parents are trying to argue with McGinley.

The watermelon was placed on the bench before every game. McGinley: Two players typically smashed watermelons. Others locked arms and made chanting sounds around it. (per Brendan Clark). McGinley: Insensitive smashing, naming watermelon. Elizabeth Moffly says that they took a watermelon to the game, dropped it in the parking lot, and made it a part of the team ritual.

Here was a picture of the watermelon that the players drew from Channel 4. The first watermelon was named Junior per Moffly on Rocky D's show.

Alexandra Weishaupt at WCBD: Parents: team has had a great season because of Coach Walpole. They say his motto is 'do the right thing.' CCSD is violating trust.

They have one of the area's top RBs, Nate Schlosser, and several other players who could get college interest.

The reason why Walpole was let go is one of the strangest stories I have ever heard. Apparently, in a team-building exercise, Walpole had the team smash a watermelon after a recent win. The Charleston County School District considered this "racist."

Update from 3:15pm press conference: @CCPNews: AMHS Booster Club prez says players smashed melons at school, not at field, & sounds were "football grunts," not monkey noises. . Parents saying football players were taken out of class 4.5 hrs to be questioned by CCSD staff, w/o parental consent. Larry Kobrovsky, state Board of Ed: "Racism is real, but when you stretch it to the pt of absurdity you diminish the reality of it"

AcMag administration has barred media from entering campus this afternoon for football practice. Told to stay outside the gate.

School Board still in exec session with Dr. McGinley, delaying start of press conference on Walpole. David Shelton on Bobby Hartin said that this has occurred for several seasons. 

Tuesday morning update from Academic Magnet: Academic Magnet AD Curt Hoffman sent a statement this morning "my focus right now is to help the players and coaches in any way I can... all matters concerning Bud Walpole are presonnel matters and as such will not be commented on."

According to Channel 5, a parent from an opposing school complained about the watermelons being smashed after a win, and also said that the Magnet players made "monkey sounds." They also said that the players were taken into meetings last week by members of the school district for three to four hours (without parental consent) and questioned about the incident with the watermelon to see if there were any "racial undertones" which the kids denied.

From David Shelton of the Post and Courier: The celebration involved the smashing of watermelons, which were then picked up by the players and eaten as post game snacks. Social media reports say a complaint was filed with the district, which deemed the celebration inappropriate.

From Post and Courier: Charleston County School Board member Michael Miller said Tuesday he received the initial complaint from the parent of a Military Magnet High School student "a week or two after" Military Magnet's 53-30 loss to Academic Magnet on Sept. 5 at North Charleston High School.

The parent complained that the watermelon celebration was accompanied by "ape-like sounds offensive to African-Americans" and was later substantiated by others, Miller said.

"I told (Charleston County School District Superintendent) Dr. (Nancy) McGinley I wasn't going to shy away from saying I was the one who brought this to the District's attention," Miller said. "If I were to do that, it would be the same as if I were participating in the actions that brought the issue to the forefront in the first place."

From Channel 4: "The whole thing began when the football team started celebrating victories by smashing a watermelon and cheering in a circle to celebrate a hard-fought win," the student said in an email. "This was seen by a [Charleston County School District] official who deemed the act to be racist."

Academic Magnet football coach Bud Walpole has been let go. Scott Eisberg of Channel 4 was the first to report this. He will remain as a teacher. 

The student said Walpole did not purchase the watermelons.

Walpole and the team traveled to Whale Branch on Friday, a day after the interviews, the student said. The Raptors lost the game 63-6.

Some of the players talked with Charleston County Superintendent Dr. Nancy McGinley about it, and no straight answer was given.

Here is the Twitter exchange I had with an Academic Magnet student.

no, the football team smashed a watermelon, which is considered "racist by CCSD" they felt he did nothing to stop the "racism"

so they fired him. Right after school. That's just one of the several things CCSD did to anger the students so much.

They had a meeting today at the School Board, where unbeknownst to the student body, he was let go as the football coach. The team will finish out the season with an interim coach as they have two home region games to close the season, against Battery Creek and Bishop England. 

Kyle Saavedra, a player on the team, said on Twitter that CCSD told them to "move forward as a team" but how can we when Coach Walpole is the foundation of our team? With two games left in the regular season, this is a huge blow to the team. Walpole is very well-liked around the school.

Even with last week's blowout loss at Whale Branch, they are still in position to play in the playoffs.

A petition is in order to reinstate Walpole, with almost 1,700 signatures:

You will be hearing a lot more about this in the next few days.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Top Lowcountry games of Week 8

I'm going to go back to something for this week only that I did for the last two seasons, talk about the top 10 games in the Lowcountry in more detail. I have been very busy this week at College of Charleston, with multiple major assignments and exams, so sorry for the delay. I will get back to normal previews next week.

Here is this week's schedule.

1) Cane Bay (3-4, 0-1) at Goose Creek (6-1, 1-0): A big game for Goose Creek supremacy, as all Region 7-4A games are. Goose Creek got a challenge last week from James Island, losing 7-6 at halftime on their homecoming before winning by a 32-13 score. Cane Bay lost at Stratford 33-7, as Stratford has rapidly improved throughout the season. Goose Creek has back to back road games following this one.

Cane Bay is a major underdog, but they only lost by 16 to Fort Dorchester and 2 to Summerville, and have beaten a improving Berkeley team, so they can't be counted out. Chuck Reedy has to have his Gators ready to play, otherwise it could be another long night.

2) Stratford (5-2, 1-0) at Wando (4-3, 0-1): Stratford may be the quietest 5-2 team in recent memory. Many people left them behind early in the season after back to back home losses to Sumter and a Fort Dorchester team that is the 2nd best team in the area, but they have come back with four straight wins, only allowing 30 points in the last 4 games. This is a huge game for playoff positioning in the region.

Wando was shut out stunningly last week by West Ashley, 9-0, as all the Wildcats needed was a receiving TD and a long FG in the 4th quarter. You never know what you are going to get from Wando each week. It is like Bo Wallace with Ole Miss. Do we get good Wando or bad Wando this week?

3) West Ashley (3-4, 1-0) at James Island (5-2, 0-1): A very interesting game in the Backyard this Friday night for homecoming. West Ashley lost four straight games before last week's shutout, and only scored 19 points in the last three of those. Maybe last week's win was a turning point to their season.

James Island on the other hand suffered a tough loss at Goose Creek, but performed very well, leading 7-0 in the 1st quarter after an 80 yard fumble return for a TD and only allowing six points to the vaunted Gator offense in the first half. This is a very interesting game because of the rivalry factor.

4) Colleton County (4-4, 0-1) at Fort Dorchester (7-1, 1-0): Fort Dorchester beat Summerville for the first time since 2001 last Friday night. Now they have a challenge with Colleton County, who lost by 24 points at home to Ashley Ridge. Now they draw one of the toughest tasks in SC high school football, their final three games, all in region, all on the road.

Fort Dorchester with Joyner and Garrett as the main offensive weapons are a very good team. Tonight is the Patriots homecoming, and with the fans so excited last week that they tore down the goal posts, homecoming at Fort Dorchester will be a happening this year.

5) Orangeburg-Wilkinson (6-1, 1-1) at Berkeley (3-4, 2-0): Berkeley was left for dead a couple weeks ago at 1-4. Now they have reeled off back-to-back region wins, and are 3-4 with a big game against a O-W team which suffered a very tough loss last week at home to Hanahan. They were blown out 38-13, and now in one week, O-W can go from the region drivers seat to possibly being eliminated from the region race with a loss.

Berkeley can move to 3-0 with a win, and next week's game is at win less Stall. I don't like getting ahead of myself, but the game Halloween night at Hanahan could be for a region title.

6) Bluffton (3-4, 0-0) at Ashley Ridge (5-3, 1-0): Bluffton still hasn't played a region game yet, while Ashley Ridge has already played one and has a bye next week. Ashley Ridge can earn a winning season with a win here, even with only scoring four more points than they've allowed in eight games (231-227). After three straight losses, will last week's win in Cougar Country spark a late-season run?

7) Academic Magnet (6-1, 2-0) at Whale Branch (3-4, 2-0): Most people at the beginning of the season would not have predicted that this game between two usually middling 2A schools would be one of the biggest games of the season so far. But it is for region play and playoff positioning. Magnet and Branch are the only 2-0 teams in Region 6-2A, and the winner of this battle has a very good chance of a region title.

8) Burke (0-7, 0-2) at St. John's (4-3, 2-0): Burke has lost 24 straight games in what has been a very tough time for the Bulldogs football program. They have gotten steadily better throughout the season, only losing by three points to Military Magnet last week in a tough homecoming loss. St. John's is perfect in their region, and closes their home schedule this week, as they finish up at Military Magnet and Cross.

9) Stall (1-6, 0-2) at Hanahan (4-3, 2-0): An important game for Hanahan in region play. They cannot slip up against a Stall team who is a major underdog. Stall hasn't scored a point since September 19. They scored forty-one points in a overtime win over North Charleston September 5. Since then, in a five-game stretch, they have been shut out four times in five games. Hanahan has steadily improved through the season as well.

10) Bible Baptist (2-5, 0-4) at Northwood Academy (7-0, 3-0): Northwood Academy has very quietly made their way through an undefeated season so far. They have opened their new stadium in Cane Bay, and have played a very good brand of football throughout the year. They've only allowed eight points in the last four games, and are a favorite in their SCISA preview. They can't slip up though, as Hilton Head Christian has an important game against Thomas Heyward.

11) Hilton Head High (5-3, 0-2) at Beaufort (4-3, 1-1): A very important game at Beaufort. The county rivals battle. B.J. Payne of Hilton Head says that Hilton Head basically has to win out to make playoffs. Beaufort has to probably win two of their final three to make playoffs. 

Enjoy the games!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Todd Gurley not playing against Arkansas

Todd Gurley, the Georgia RB accused of signing autographs, will not play in the next game this Saturday in Little Rock against Arkansas. No new news at this time.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Week 7 preview/wk 6 recap

High school football in 2014 in the Lowcountry has been something where there have been many factors affecting things. Injuries; weather; and the momentum that goes with high school kids playing on the field every Friday night with emotion on their side.

The season has been a fun one so far, with many surprises, and Goose Creek, Timberland and Northwood Academy rising to the cream of the crop in their regions. Every other region in the area appears to be up to grabs as everyone is in region play this week.

Shrine Bowl rosters were named on Monday. We have nine players from our coverage area in the Shrine Bowl, and no more than one from any area school. Here is a link to the full list of players:

Who would have thought Summerville would have three losses before region play, with two of those at home? It is a lot like the Gamecocks troubles. Injuries have played a big part, with Sawyer Bridges being out for a little while, and Zack Bailey as well, but still, that is two out of three seasons with three non-region Ls for McKissick. Summerville fans are starting to question Coach McKissick, and are wondering if a change should be in the offing after this year.

Wando has been schizophrenic. They are the team you don't know what they are going to do each night. One week, they beat Summerville by 23. Then they get blown out at home by Fort Dorchester. The next week, they blow out Bluffton at homecoming. If they get all their pieces right they could be a scary team.

Bishop England has improved with a freshman QB, Leo Albano, but they are still win less at 0-6, which is hard to believe when you think about where they were the past few years. A loss this week at home against Battery Creek would make them 0-7 for the first time since '96, when they were still based in downtown Charleston.

As we get to all region games, it will be an interesting week of football. All games start at 7:30 Friday unless noted.

4A: Cane Bay (3-3) at Stratford (4-2): This is a game which has become a very good one all of a sudden. Cane Bay has rapidly improved this year, still at .500 at 3-3, and has a chance to pull out a big road win. Stratford under Joe Marion already has four wins, and for the second time in three years blew out the Green Wave. That was a huge impetus going into region play, where the games really matter.

If Stratford wants a chance of winning the region, they have to win this game. They can't look ahead to next week's important game at Wando. Stratford's defense has improved, only giving up 25 points in the last 3 games. Cane Bay has to play at Goose Creek next.

James Island (5-1) at Goose Creek (5-1): Goose Creek has seemed to improve every week during their five game winning streak. Not that it is anything new under Chuck Reedy. Tyrik Johnson ran for 202 yards against Ashley Ridge, and earned Channel 5's player of the week. The last time they lost a game on the field against a Lowcountry team was November 27, 2009, the famous OT Bruce Ellington TD run for Berkeley, who won the state title the next week. This game is Goose Creek's homecoming.

They face a surprise team in James Island. Most people did not see this team coming with Coach Ike Allred's new offense and his new no-huddle style. The Trojans already have five wins, and have found a good RB in Buss Hamilton and a young lefty QB, Gage Moloney. They are major underdogs in this game, as the Trojans haven't beaten Goose Creek since 2002. The Gators will have to prepare for this style, and they did so against ECA two weeks ago. This game could be interesting.

Wando (4-2) at West Ashley (2-4): West Ashley has tumbled over the past few weeks. Starting 2-0, they are now 2-4 and have lost their last three games by at least two touchdowns. Now, they face a hungry Wando team. This rivalry has always been one of the best in the area, as they battle in every sport. West Ashley's last win in the rivalry was in 2011.

Wando now has a two QB system, with Bailey Hart and Olivier Michaud sharing the duties. It has been very successful, as Wando has played better in their last couple of weeks and have gotten some important wins. This is an important game as the region opener, as the winner will gain some new life headed into the rest of region play. This game is also the TV game on MyTV Charleston.

Ashley Ridge (4-3) at Colleton County (4-3): Amazingly, this is the final home game of the year for Colleton County, as they finish the season with three straight region games on the road. This would be a big game anyway, especially in this region with only four region games, but with what has happened to Summerville and Fort Dorchester not proven as of yet against a region opponent the region is wide open.

Colleton County got a big win last week over South Aiken, while Ashley Ridge suffered a loss against a powerful Goose Creek side. This time, region play gets started in earnest. The winner of this game still has a chance at winning region, while the loser is most likely out or has a very hard road.

Bluffton has an off week.

Fort Dorchester (6-1) at Summerville (4-3): Fort Dorchester, with all the great players and teams that Steve LaPrad has had, has not defeated Summerville in football since 2001. Seniors on this year's football team were four years old the last time the Patriots beat the Green Wave.

They have a great chance to do it Friday night. The keys have been handed to Dekareon Joyner, who became QB earlier this year, as Kobe Garrett was moved to RB/WR. Joyner, as a 9th grader, has already drawn praise from John McKissick. This is a gut check game for Summerville. Win this game, and all they need to do is win the next three and win another region title. A loss and there is a chance they don't even have a winning season. This is always a huge game, and it is even more so this year.

3A: Georgetown (5-1, 1-0) at North Myrtle Beach (1-6, 0-2): Georgetown travels to 1-6 North Myrtle Beach this week. A win will clinch a winning season.

Beaufort (3-3, 1-1) at Stall (1-5, 0-1): Beaufort suffered a tough loss last week at home against Berkeley. They were leading most of the game before Berkeley pulled ahead in the fourth quarter to get the upset win in the Eagles Nest, 27-21. Stall has had a tough season so far, and in the last two games have been shut out 87-0 by Colleton County and Orangeburg-Wilkinson. It doesn't get much easier this week with a Beaufort team that always plays hard.

Berkeley (2-4, 1-0) at Hilton Head (5-2, 0-1): There usually isn't such a thing as a must-win game on October 3, but last week for Jeff Cruce and Berkeley was one. They had to pull a win out in order to get some semblance of momentum for region play. Now, at 1-0 in region play, they face a Hilton Head team who suffered a tough loss at Hanahan last week. Hilton Head led thru most of the first half (in a game that started 90 minutes early due to weather) before succumbing in the second half.

A win for either team will help to continue momentum, especially as Berkeley hosts O-W next week and Hilton Head plays one of their main rivals, Beaufort.

Hanahan (3-3, 1-0) at Orangeburg-Wilkinson (6-0, 1-0): A battle of teams who won their first game in the region. O-W is still undefeated, and has one of the best defenses in the state. They've scored 187 points in their first six games, and only allowed 36. Orangeburg-Wilkinson has a Shrine Bowl inductee in Albert Huggins on the defensive line, and he leads that defense.

Hanahan had a big win last week, and hopes to get above .500 with an upset win here.

2A: Ridgeland-Hardeeville (4-2, 1-0) at Woodland (3-3, 1-0): Ridgeland-Hardeeville is a perfect 3-0 at home but only 1-2 on the road, while Woodland has had only two home games. Woodland hopes to continue the winning streak that began against Edisto last week here.

Academic Magnet (5-1, 1-0) at Garrett (5-1, 1-0): Who would have thought that these two schools, not known for having great football histories, would be a combined 10-2 and in a battle for a region title? These two schools are. Academic Magnet has never won more than 6 games in a season, while Garrett has a new coach, Nick Hopp.

Garrett hasn't started with a 5-1 record since 1986, while Magnet has one of the leading rushers in the area, Nate Schlosser, with over 1300 yards on the year. This will be a huge game in this region, likely determining the region title.

Battery Creek (1-6, 0-1) at Bishop England (0-6, 0-1): Hard to believe, but this may be Bishop England's best chance at a win this season. BE has gotten gradually better throughout the season, losing to Whale Branch last week, but Battery Creek only lost by three points at home to Garrett last week.

Whale Branch (2-4, 1-0) at North Charleston (2-4, 0-1): Both schools have been better this year, as North Charleston only lost by a touchdown last week at Academic Magnet, while Whale Branch beat Bishop England by 20 points, including a punt return for a touchdown.

Kingstree (3-3, 0-1) at Andrews (3-3, 1-0): Kingstree had the tough task of facing Timberland last week, getting shut out at home, while Andrews had a very rare forfeit as Lee Central's homecoming game against them was postponed and later cancelled after deadly shootings in the Bishopville area.

Johnsonville (2-4, 0-1) at Timberland (6-0, 1-0): Johnsonville nearly beat Berkeley to start the season, but have fallen on tough times, losing all three of their home games so far this year. Timberland is Timberland, as they have allowed seven or fewer points in three of their six wins so far. A important region game.

Waccamaw (4-2, 1-0) at Loris (6-0, 1-0): 6-0 Loris hosts 4-2 Waccamaw in one of the best games on the Grand Strand this week. Waccamaw won 34-18 last week at Mullins.

1A: Denmark-Olar (0-6, 0-1) at Branchville (3-3, 0-1): Branchville suffered a tough 52-8 loss to Estill last Friday, but face a Denmark-Olar squad that has only scored thirty points all year.

Cross (3-3, 1-0) at Baptist Hill (0-6, 0-1): Baptist Hill has played much better in their previous two games, losing by 12 and 16 respectively, but they are still win less on the year and face a Cross team who blew out Burke 67-13 last week.

Military Magnet (3-3, 1-0) at Burke (0-6, 0-1): Burke had a very tough loss last week, but play at home this week against a Military Magnet team that has won their last two games, at Scott's Branch and home against Lincoln.

St. John's (3-3, 1-0) at Lincoln (2-4, 0-1): Brad Bowles has improved his St. John's team each year he's been at the job; they hope to go over .500 with a win against Lincoln this week, who have lost their last 3 after starting 2-1.

SCISA: Colleton Prep (4-2, 1-1) at Holly Hill Academy (3-3, 1-2): Non-region game for these teams, but still important for playoff postioning.
Dorchester Academy (2-4, 1-1) at Bible Baptist (2-4, 0-3): A battle of 2-4 teams in region as the winner hopes to gain better playoff positioning.
Hilton Head Prep (4-2, 2-1) at Thomas Heyward (2-4, 1-1): An important game in this region, as WHHI-TV will televise the game for tape delay coverage later.
Williamsburg Academy (6-0, 4-0) at First Baptist (0-6, 0-3): First Baptist has a very tough task this Friday, hosting undefeated Williamsburg Academy; they lost 70-8 last week to Bethesda.
Christian Academy (1-5, 0-3) at Hilton Head Christian (4-2, 3-1): Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach makes the long trip to Hilton Head to face a good Hilton Head Christian team.
Palmetto Christian (0-6, 0-1) at Northwood Academy (6-0, 4-0): Back to back shut outs for Northwood Academy; they hope to keep it up this week against Palmetto Christian.
Pinewood Prep (4-3, 2-2) at Hammond (6-0, 5-0) (Thursday): Pinewood Prep travels to undefeated Hammond Thursday night in a game which could be huge if the Panthers can steal a win.
Porter-Gaud (4-3, 2-2) at Wilson Hall (4-2, 2-2): A big game in SCISA in the battle for playoff positioning on Wilson Hall's homecoming.
8-Man: St. John's Christian (3-3, 3-2) at Beaufort Academy (2-4, 2-3): St. John's won two in a row before last week, while Beaufort has won two out of three.
Ridge Christian (2-5, 1-3) at Cathedral Academy (3-3, 3-1): Cathedral has won all of their games inside the division, while Ridge won last week over James Island Christian.
Faith Christian (5-2, 4-0) at Charleston Collegiate (1-5, 1-3): Faith Christian is led by Alex North, one of the leading rushers in the state. He had 255 yards last week in a win.
Patrick Henry (6-1, 5-0) at Coastal Christian (0-6, 0-4): Another of the leading rushers in the state, Will Tuten, travels to Coastal Christian with Patrick Henry. He had 270 yards last week.
Clarendon Hall (5-1, 4-1) at James Island Christian (1-5, 1-4): A tough battle for the Lions as they face 5-1 Clarendon Hall, who has won two straight.

Enjoy the games!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Week 6 preview/wk 5 review

Hard to believe, but for many schools in our area, high school football season is half over with. The Shrine Bowl rosters, showcasing 44 of the best players in South Carolina, will be released next Monday. Smaller schools begin region play this week, while 4A schools begin next week. Last week was another interesting week in the Lowcountry, just like what college football brought us.

In last week's games, we had Summerville playing to their potential with a homecoming win against West Ashley that they badly needed. Fort Dorchester shut out Wando in a big surprise, after Wando had blown out Summerville the week before. Stratford got a big win at Hanahan in their first meeting since 1983. Goose Creek got a big win against Eastern Christian Academy, who played very dirty in their game, with several unsportsmanlike penalties and even ejections.

James Island is now 5-1, for the first time since 2000, after beating Bishop England. Cane Bay got over SIX HUNDRED yards rushing in a win over Ashley Ridge. Cane Bay is 3-3, after not winning a game last year. Colleton County blew out Stall, 35-0.

Timberland pulled out a big win over Berkeley to extend Berkeley's tough season so far. Academic Magnet won again. The Raptors are 4-1, and are in the top 10 in the Lowcountry Post and Courier poll, which I don't think they've ever made. Bluffton lost 12-7 at Hilton Head, while Beaufort won at Manning 21-20, and Orangeburg-Wilkinson stayed undefeated, 44-20 over Richland Northeast. North Charleston also got their second win of the year, at Baptist Hill.

This week will be a good one with some interesting games around the Lowcountry. Just like 25 of 30 days in September, there is a chance of rain this Friday night. It varies depending on where you are in the area. Many games in the Upstate have been moved to Thursday. Multiple games in our area have already been moved to other places or moved up their times. All games start at 7:30 Friday unless noted.


Ashley Ridge (4-2) at Goose Creek (4-1): Both Goose Creek and Ashley Ridge are on their seventh game of the year, amazingly. The Swamp Foxes were gashed last week against Cane Bay. Goose Creek's win against Eastern Christian Academy last week was a good one, even with ECA's QB David Sills not playing due to injury. Chuck Reedy said it was one of the toughest teams to play at Goose Creek in several seasons.

Ashley Ridge always seems to sneak up on opponents, but they have been blown out in their two losses this year. Goose Creek is heading into the meat of their schedule, with region play starting next week. This game could be closer than we think, but Goose Creek has a lot of firepower.

Stratford (3-2) at Summerville (4-2): Stratford and Summerville. One of the best rivalries in the state. It has been since the beginning of Stratford in the early 1980s. This year though, Joe Marion is on the Stratford sideline instead of Ray Stackley. Stratford gutted out their game against Hanahan last week with three Tyler Tekac FGs. Tekac is a experienced kicker, which is big in a high school game. This week, Summerville has to defend Jameson Mobbs and Stratford well in their last tune-up before region. That will be the key in the game.

It is also the television game this week, and will air on MyTV Charleston.

Bluffton (3-3) at Wando (3-2): Bluffton makes the long trip to Wando for the Warriors homecoming. Homecoming at Wando usually gets one of the biggest high school football crowds in the Lowcountry. They routinely get 4-5K for regular games, and probably will be over 6K this week. Wando has to bounce back from last week's game quickly. No one expected them to be shut out on their home field like they were.

Bluffton lost at home Hilton Head, even though Hilton Head went for it on 4th down late in the 4th quarter inside their own 30 yard line and did not get it, giving the Bobcats a huge chance to win the ball game. They did not succeed though, and lost 12-7. Bluffton has a bye week after this game before they finally start region play October 17 at Ashley Ridge, while Wando gets right into the gauntlet of their schedule, traveling to West Ashley before hosting Stratford and Goose Creek after this one.

West Ashley (2-3) at Fort Dorchester (5-1) (7pm): West Ashley has fallen on some hard times lately, losing three games in a row after starting 2-0. They lost on their homecoming last week, only scoring on a fumble return in the 1st quarter. Fort Dorchester cannot look ahead to next week's mega-game against Summerville, which will probably determine the Region 8-4A title. Fort Dorchester has a lot of weapons, and they need to use them wisely in this one.

Kareon Joyner, Kobe Garrett, and Dwayne Pierce (DE who just got a offer from Holy Cross) need to lead the Patriot charge in order for them to earn a big win over a reeling Wildcat team.

South Aiken (2-3) at Colleton County (3-3): A inter-region battle in Walterboro Friday night, as an Aiken-area team, South Aiken, makes the trip to the Lowcountry to play Colleton County. Colleton County, amazingly, has just two home games left (this week and next week against Ashley Ridge). The Cougars have a chance to improve to a winning record with a win here.

South Aiken's two wins come over Glenn Hills of Augusta and Strom Thurmond. The Thoroughbreds have one of the most unique names of any football team I've seen: D'njaee Whosendove. He's only a sophomore at WR, and in their last game, had five catches for 184 yards and two touchdowns. You'll be hearing a lot about him in the next three seasons.


St. James (2-3) at Georgetown (4-1): Georgetown opens region play with a game against rival St. James. Georgetown suffered their first loss of the year last week, 20-3 at home against Loris. Georgetown needs to improve from that performance in region play in order to get a good seed in the playoffs and perhaps host some games.

Berkeley (1-4) at Beaufort (3-2): A battle between two of the most well-known posters on PFT, BEAUFORTEAGLESFAN AND CITYSLICKER. Berkeley badly needs a win here. Falling to 1-4 with a loss at Timberland is tough. A loss in this game, falling to 1-5, would ensure a non-winning season, this time for the fourth straight year. Jeff Cruce has had some tough times this year; a win in his first region game would help him greatly.

Beaufort only has four home games all season; starting out with four of their first five on the road. To go 3-2 in these games with a reduced roster is an accomplishment. They can start region play on the right foot with a win here, as this game will be important for playoff positioning. With five region games, three wins are likely needed for an automatic playoff spot.

Hilton Head (4-1) at Hanahan (2-3) (6pm): Homecoming at Hanahan as the Hawks open up region play with Hilton Head, who has challenged them in the last several seasons. This game has been moved to 6pm from 7:30 because of the weather. Hilton Head started off fast due to playing some weak opponents (which they are required to play under new Beaufort County rules where all public schools, no matter the class, play each other). Hanahan, on the other hand, has already played 4A schools Stratford, Cane Bay and James Island, all much improved.

This is a barometer game for both. Hanahan looks to hold serve on their home field, while Hilton Head makes a long road trip to the Charleston area to test themselves. The Seahawks close with two home region games, so if they can get a win Friday night, they will be in a good position to snag an automatic spot.

Stall (1-4) at Orangeburg-Wilkinson (5-0): Yet another homecoming game, this time at Orangeburg-Wilkinson, as the undefeated Bruins host a Stall team who has gone through some tough times. Joe Bessinger has performed much better as head coach this year, but with lower numbers, it is tougher to bring up a program that hasn't had a good modicum of success recently. O-W on the other hand gave up their most points of the year last week (20). They only gave up 16 for the season before that. This will be a tough one for the Warriors.


Woodland (2-3) at Edisto (0-5): Woodland has had a tough time this season, only winning twice, even with new Georgia commit Michael Barnett. He switched from Florida State to Georgia last Friday. The Wolverines this week travel to 0-5 Edisto, who have scored just 42 points all season, with their max total 14 last week at home against Brookland-Cayce.

North Charleston (2-3) at Academic Magnet (4-1): Yet another homecoming game, with more region play going on; the Raptors have been a surprise this year, even after losing their RB Stuart Walters two seasons ago. Nate Schlosser ran for another 142 yards last week; he is averaging over 225 yards rushing in the last four games. North Charleston has improved, winning last week against Baptist Hill.

Garrett (4-1) at Battery Creek (1-4): Battery Creek has had a tough season so far, with their only win a forfeit as Bluffton had an ineligible player. They start region play with a surprising 4-1 Garrett team whose only loss is to a undefeated Allendale-Fairfax side.

Bishop England (0-5) at Whale Branch (1-4): Region play starts for these teams as Bishop England is still hoping to get their first win of the year. They haven't been 0-5 since way back in 1997. With so many young players, Coach John Cantey has had to coach them in-game and make them better. Last week, they nearly pulled a win off at James Island, leading into the final five minutes. The real season starts for them this week. Whale Branch blew out Windsor Forest 42-7 last week.

Andrews (2-3) at Lee Central (1-4): Andrews makes the long trip to Bishopville for their first region game, a battle against Lee Central. They won last week at Timmonsville; Timmonsville just had their starting QB, Shykell Jackson, charged with armed robbery on Monday.

Timberland (5-0) at Kingstree (3-2): Timberland heads up Highway 52 to Kingstree Friday night to face a Jaguars team that has won all three road games so far this year, but lost their two games at home. Timberland got a big win last week against Berkeley (with Andy Demetra calling it), and they hope to continue their hot streak.

Waccamaw (3-2) at Mullins (3-2): A battle of 3-2 teams as Waccamaw travels to Mullins to open up their region play.


Branchville (3-2) at Estill (5-0): Branchville has their first winning record since they started back their football program; they have a tough task ahead of them in undefeated Estill. All but one of Estill's games have been within six points or less.

Baptist Hill (0-5) at St. John's (2-3): Region opener on John's Island for both teams. St. John's had a week off last week; Baptist Hill finally broke single digits in their loss to North Charleston.

Cross (2-3) vs. Burke (0-5) (Ravenel Stadium): Winless Burke hopes to get off the snide in region play as they host 2-3 Cross. This game has been moved from Stoney Field to Ravenel Stadium because of the rain threat.

Lincoln (2-3) at Military Magnet (2-3): Lincoln is 2-1 at home this season, 0-2 on the road; Military Magnet is 0-2 at home, 2-1 on the road. Something has to give in this region battle.


Hilton Head Prep (3-2, 1-1) at Colleton Prep (4-1, 1-0): A region battle in Walterboro; Hilton Head Prep lost their homecoming last week by one to Curtis Baptist of Augusta. CP won at St. Andrew's.
First Baptist (0-5, 0-2) at Bethesda (GA) (1-4, 0-1): First Baptist still looking their first win of the year, heads to Savannah to face a Bethesda team that lost 67-54 last week.
Hilton Head Christian (3-2, 2-1) vs. Palmetto Christian (0-5, 0-0) (Town Hall Field): Palmetto Christian's Chris Shimakonis will be back this week after his injury suffered on the field, and they are in a need for a win. Hilton Head Christian is 3-2.
Northwood Academy (5-0, 1-0) at St. Andrew's (1-4, 1-0): St. Andrew's only has one win on year, over winless First Baptist, while Northwood is one of best SCISA teams in state.
Pinewood Prep (3-3, 1-2) at Augusta Christian (4-2, 1-2): Pinewood Prep got a win last week at Heathwood Hall 14-7, they hope to start a winning streak in Augusta.
Porter-Gaud (3-3, 1-2) at Heathwood Hall (2-3, 1-3): Porter-Gaud lost last week in a heartbreaker 35-34 to Ben Lippen. They hope to bounce back at Heathwood Hall.
8-Man: Charleston Collegiate (1-4, 1-2) at Beaufort Academy (1-4, 1-3): CC lost last week against St. John's Christian, while Beaufort lost at home to Cathedral Academy.
Cathedral Academy (3-2, 3-0) at Patrick Henry (5-1, 4-0): A battle of teams perfect in their regions. Probably best game of the night in the state in 8-Man.
St. John's Christian (3-2, 3-1) at Faith Christian (4-2, 3-0): Faith Christian boasts the leading rusher in the state, Alex North. He has 1,172 yards and 14 TDs, averaging 195 yards/game.
James Island Christian (1-4, 1-3) at Ridge Christian (1-5, 0-3) (3:30pm): James Island Christian got their first win last week, 58-34 over Coastal Christian, while Ridge lost at Patrick Henry. A good Friday appetizer.

And there we have it for this week. Hope the weather holds out and enjoy the games!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Week 5 preview/wk 4 recap

Another week of high school football is upon us. Anything can happen in a week of football. Last week was one where Dorchester County teams were supposed to show their stuff. Summerville was hosting Wando; Fort Dorchester was hosting Goose Creek; and Ashley Ridge was hosting Stratford.

In these three games combined, the three road teams beat the three Dorchester County schools by a combined 76 points, 104-28. Summerville lost 37-14 without their starting QB Sawyer Bridges, Ashley Ridge was blown out 49-14, and Fort D played well, but lost 17-0. You can't expect anything when we are talking about 15-18 year olds who are on momentum. That's why they play the games. It is amazing that after this week, many schools will be half over with their seasons.

There were several other interesting games last week. Hanahan beat Cane Bay on Saturday afternoon, keeping their momentum going as they head toward region play; while West Ashley lost at Colleton County, who really needed a win. Berkeley had the week off. James Island won 31-6 at St. John's, moving to 4-1 on the year. Bluffton won at Whale Branch, but only by two touchdowns, 34-20.

Walt Fagan of Hanahan and KJ Wood of Goose Creek were the two players of the week this week from the Post and Courier. Fagan threw for 329 yards in the win against Cane Bay. Wood had 11 tackles, recovering 2 fumbles in Goose Creek holding Fort Dorchester to just 99 yards of offense. Xavier Young of Stratford was Channel 5's player of the week, as he had 199 yards rushing and 4 TDs in their win.

Before I get into this week's previews, I would like to offer condolences to a very sad loss that all have had in the community this week. Clemson sophomore political science major Tucker Hipps died on Monday after falling off a bridge near Lake Hartwell. There have been many remembrances of him over the past few days. He was a Palmetto Boys' State counselor, but he also was a football player at Wren High School.

He was a DB and LB for the Hurricanes from 2009-2012, and an honor student through HS and college. He was a model citizen. This is a sad loss not just for Clemson University, but for the entire state of South Carolina. Here is a picture of him at his senior night. Prayers to him, his family, his girlfriend Katie Clouse, and his many other friends.

Now, on to the previews. A lot of teams are taking the week off because it is right before region play, so therefore there are fewer games. All games will be Friday night at 7:30 unless otherwise noted.

4A: Eastern Christian Academy (1-4) at Goose Creek (3-1): This game has been one planned in the works for years. Eastern Christian is based out of Elkton, Maryland, near Wilmington, Delaware. The team is filled with prospects. One of them is QB David Sills, who signed with Southern California in 7th or 8th grade. However, he has switched to West Virginia. He has been hurt the past few games, so the Honey Badgers (like Tyrann Mathieu) have had to rely on a backup QB.

ECU had to play three straight games in Texas, losing to Trinity, Desoto and Coppell. In the season's first game, they defeated Spartanburg 58-56. Eastern has several major prospects alongside Sills, including WR Freddie Canteen, who is going to Michigan. Another prospect, Neiko Cramer, is going to Tennessee. They will have to face a tough opponent in Goose Creek, one of the best teams in the Lowcountry, and they definitely showed it after last week's game. Can they continue their winning ways?

Ashley Ridge (4-1) at Cane Bay (2-3): Both Ashley Ridge and Cane Bay suffered tough losses last week. AR losing to Stratford was a surprise, even though Stratford is the more established program. AR had scored at least 27 in their previous four games, but only scored 14 this game. They trailed 49-0 at one point in last week's game.

They hope to bounce back this week. Cane Bay, on the other hand, has played very close in all five of their games so far. Them along with James Island are the two most improved teams in the area. The Cobras are not home again after this for four weeks, as they face a bye week next before region play, then a stretch at Stratford and at Goose Creek before they host James Island on October 24. AR and Cane Bay have played since they started as schools, so this is always a good game. Who will come out on top?

Bishop England (0-4) at James Island (4-1): James Island, the other surprise team in the Lowcountry this year, is 4-1. Even with the schedule they have played (only 2 4A teams), they have still played well, with the only loss to Ashley Ridge. They have wins over Hanahan and Colleton County, both surprises. This week, they face Bishop England for the first time since 1996.

It is hard to believe that the Trojans haven't played Bishop England in football in that long, as they share some of the same territory, and both have good fan bases. Bishop England hasn't started 0-4 in a season since 1997. They hope to get their first win of the season in this game, while with a win, the Trojans would start 5-1 for the first time since 2000. This will be an interesting battle.

Hanahan (2-2) at Stratford (2-2): Both Stratford and Hanahan had nice bounce-back wins last week. These 2-2 football teams will battle in Goose Creek Friday night in a game where the winner will go over .500, and gain momentum. Stratford travels to Summerville after this, who looks much different after last week's loss. Hanahan starts region play next; they had an early bye week. The QB battle between Fagan and Jameson Mobbs of Stratford will be one to watch for. This will be a tight game.

Fort Dorchester (4-1) at Wando (3-1): A battle of one-loss teams in Mount Pleasant. One of the better games of the weekend. Both teams will have their second to last tuneup before region play begin in two weeks. Wando have won two straight in gritty fashion, as Coach Jimmy Noonan has brought a tough brand of football east of the Cooper. Fort Dorchester had a tough night last week, but held the vaunted Goose Creek offense to just 17 points.

This game, with most of Wando's weapons (including QB Bailey Hart and RB Kenny Waring) will be a humdinger, with a lot of great skill position play. Fort D is known for defense, Wando offense. The winner gains more momentum heading towards region.

Summerville (3-2) at West Ashley (2-2): Summerville, in two games, has gone from one of the best teams in the state (when they are healthy) to struggling to field a full starting offense. It was a big surprise when Wando blew them out at home last Friday night. Wando had beaten them a few years back in Summerville, but it was a close game until the 4th quarter. This game was a blowout during the entire 2nd half.

West Ashley had a tough loss at Colleton County. After starting 2-0, they are now 2-2. The Wildcats have a tough task ahead of them, but they have beaten Summerville before at West Ashley. They did in 2011 when Caroline Cashion kicked a game winning FG to beat the Green Wave 10-7. Summerville will be angry. West Ashley also. The team that is angriest likely will come out on top in this one.

Hilton Head (4-1) at Bluffton (3-2): Bluffton has bounced back nicely from their poor start, winning three straight games, even though it hasn't been amongst top competition. Hilton Head, at 4-1, starts their march toward the 3A playoffs with this game. Next week their region play begins at Hanahan. This rivalry is an underrated one around the state, as most of the Hilton Head and Bluffton kids know each other, and last year, Hilton Head won by one, 33-32, on a option pitch on a fake XP. This will be a great one.

Colleton County (2-3) at Stall (1-3): Colleton County makes a rare trip to Stall this week. The Cougars had a big win last week in order to get back after losing three of their first four games. Stall is 1-3, and they are looking for an upset on their home field. Colleton County has just two home games after this, South Aiken and Ashley Ridge in the next two weeks after this game.

3A: Loris (4-0) at Georgetown (4-0): Undefeated Loris travels to undefeated Georgetown in a big game in the Grand Strand area. This is the last game before region play for both teams, as region starts next week in the Myrtle Beach area.

Beaufort (2-2) at Manning (3-1): Beaufort makes the long trip to Manning Friday night. They've shut out their last two opponents, Whale Branch and Battery Creek, 21-0 and 51-0. They start region play next week at home against Berkeley.

Richland Northeast (0-4) at Orangeburg-Wilkinson (4-0): Orangeburg-Wilkinson goes for a 5-0 start on Friday night. O-W has given up a whopping 16 points in their first four ball games. The most they've allowed is 10 to Colleton County.

2A: Burke (0-4) at Academic Magnet (3-1): Academic Magnet has had a very good few weeks. RB Nate Schlosser has run for 759 yards in the last three games for the Raptors, including 190 last week in a 34-0 win over Baptist Hill. Magnet is going for a 4-1 start this week while Burke is going for their first win of the season.

Battery Creek (1-3) at Ridgeland/Hardeeville (2-2) (Thursday, 7:30): Another Thursday night TV battle this week, between two teams in opposite directions. Ridgeland beat Military Magnet 48-0, while Battery Creek lost 51-0 to Beaufort. Ridgeland hopes to continue their momentum. This game will air on WSAV's MyTV channel, and WSAV Sunday morning.

Baptist Hill (0-4) at North Charleston (1-3): Baptist Hill still only has twelve points on the year from four games. They will travel to 1-3 North Charleston this week; the Cougars lost last week at Branchville 48-30. Both hope for a bounce back.

Whale Branch (0-4) at Windsor Forest (GA) (0-4): Winless Whale Branch and Windsor Forest play each other in Savannah Friday night. This game is Windsor Forest's homecoming. Windsor lost last week at Screven County (who played St. John's earlier in the year), 36-8.

Andrews (2-2) at Hemingway (4-0): Andrews heads to undefeated Hemingway in an important game, as Hemingway won at Johnsonville last week 14-9.

Berkeley (1-3) at Timberland (5-0) (MyTV Charleston): Berkeley and Timberland are rivals of each other as they are two of the most established programs in Berkeley County. Berkeley has struggled this year, losing three straight after a win against Johnsonville, while Timberland is undefeated this year at 5-0, hoping for a sixth win in a row.

Andrew Miller (Post and Courier HS football reporter) and Scott Eisberg discussed how this was a battle between a long-time power (Berkeley) and a little guy (Timberland) who hasn't been around a while. Both were expecting the little guy to win. We will see Friday night at 7:30.

1A: Lincoln (2-2) at Branchville (2-2): A battle of 2-2 teams getting ready to start region play next week. Will be a good game.

Cross (2-2) at Lake Marion (2-2): Strangely, after Cross lost their first two games at home, they won the first two games of their five-game road swing, and are now at .500. Lake Marion blew out Burke last week, 56-6. This will be a good battle.

Military Magnet (1-3) at Scott's Branch (1-3): Military Magnet had a tough week last week, losing 48-0 to Ridgeland-Hardeeville, while Scott's Branch lost 27-0 to Cross at home. They battle this week.

SCISA: Colleton Prep (3-1, 1-0) at St. Andrew's (1-3, 1-0): Colleton Prep won this by two touchdowns last year.
Thomas Heyward (2-2, 1-0) at Dorchester Academy (1-4, 0-1): Dorchester Academy badly needs a win to avoid going 0-2 in their region.
Curtis Baptist (3-1) at Hilton Head Prep (3-1, 4:30pm): Curtis Baptist of Augusta makes the long trip to Hilton Head to play Hilton Head Prep on homecoming.
Hilton Head Christian (2-2, 1-1) at Bethesda (1-3): Hilton Head Christian makes the trip to Savannah to play Bethesda, in a battle of two high-scoring teams.
Christian Academy (MB) (1-3, 0-2) at Northwood Academy (4-0, 1-0): Christian Academy heads over to Northwood's new stadium in what will hopefully be their first Friday night game.
Palmetto Christian (0-4) at Bible Baptist (1-3): Palmetto Christian plays their first game after head coach Chris Shimakonis suffered a brutal injury last game. Here is a great story from Channel 4 about it.
Heathwood Hall (2-2, 1-2) at Pinewood Prep (2-3, 0-2): Pinewood Prep and Heathwood Hall continue region play this week. Pinewood lost last week against Ben Lippen.
Porter-Gaud (3-2, 1-1) at Ben Lippen (3-2, 2-2): QB Kris Johnson, one of the best SCISA QBs in state, and the Cyclones head to Columbia to face that same Ben Lippen team.
8-Man: Cathedral Academy (2-2, 2-0) at Beaufort Academy (1-3, 1-2): Cathedral puts its undefeated region record on the line as they travel to Coach Scott Richards and Beaufort Academy.
St. John's Christian (2-2, 2-1) at Charleston Collegiate (1-3, 1-1): Charleston Collegiate and St. John's Christian will play in a competitive region game.
Coastal Christian (0-5, 0-3) at James Island Christian (0-4, 0-3): Homecoming at James Island Christian as the two schools battle for somebody's first win of the season.
Faith Christian (4-1, 3-0) at Greenwood Christian (4-0, 3-0): One-loss Faith Christian makes the long trip to Greenwood to play undefeated Greenwood Christian.
Ridge Christian (1-4, 0-2) at Patrick Henry (4-1, 3-0): Patrick Henry, one of the best SCISA teams in the state, hosts Ridge Christian this week.

Hope the weather holds off, and enjoy the games!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Week 4 preview/wk 3 recap

High school football is something which has stood the test of time in the Lowcountry. As the area has grown from being a military town to one of the most diversified economies in the South, one thing has remained constant. High school football. With more schools spread across the area, there are more opportunities for players to play, and more chances for schools to make rivalries.

Summerville-Goose Creek is one. These schools have been around for several decades each, but Goose Creek was not known as a football school until Chuck Reedy came in 2002. In last week's preview, I detailed his progression in wins and how he built up the program.

John McKissick, on the other hand, has had one of the most historic programs in the country in his reign. Having been the coach since 1952, he has guided Summerville from the days when it was a small country town to now when it is one of the fastest-growing areas in the South. With 10 state titles, the program has always played at a very competitive level.

Last week's game was one of the best of the season and in the series. Delayed by rain, Goose Creek took a big lead (21-0), but Summerville came almost all the way back. A controversial first-down call and a roughing the punter penalty near the end stopped the Green Wave comeback, 21-14, giving Goose Creek an important win.

Other games also meant a lot in the area. Berkeley and Cane Bay played a slop fest in the rain in Moncks Corner; a Matt Rudy blocked punt with under :30 left led to a Phillip Jackson 34-yard FG with :10 left to give the Cobras a 3-0 win. Wando, without their starting QB and RB, pulled a win out at Lexington; Fort Dorchester, led by QB Kobe Garrett, beat Stratford on their home field; Ashley Ridge won at West Ashley to continue their best start in history; Colleton County lost to Orangeburg-Wilkinson; and James Island shut out Stall 49-0.

Porter-Gaud pulled out a win at Bishop England, Academic Magnet's Nate Schlosser, after running for 278 last week, ran for 291 this week in a win against Branchville (569 yards in two games), Beaufort beat Whale Branch, and in two Monday night games, Cathedral Academy beat St. John's Christian, and Northwood Academy, opening up their new field, beat Hilton Head Christian.

This week will be another good one. All games at 7:30 Friday unless noted.

4A: Goose Creek (2-1) @ Fort Dorchester (3-0) (MyTV Charleston): A game between the two best teams in the area per the Post and Courier. This will be a great battle between coaches. Chuck Reedy and Steve LaPrad have done great jobs this year molding their programs into something which their communities should be proud of. Kobe Garrett was the Live 5 Player of the Week this week; he deserved the honor, leading the Patriots to a big road win.

Both teams suffered through adversity last week going through hour-long weather delays to play their games; hopefully this doesn't happen this week, as this is one of the top games in the state this week.

Stratford (1-2) @ Ashley Ridge (4-0): Not that much was expected of Ashley Ridge this year. Many people picked them to compete in the region, but not to compete for a region title. Having good skill players in 4A high school football helps to make your team become a cream of the crop squad. Dashawn Santiago showed that last week at West Ashley with 8 catches for 111 yards and a TD.

Stratford has gone thru some growing pains under Joe Marion, starting 1-2, but they have a chance to turn that around this week with a win at Ashley Ridge. Next week they host Hanahan, then they travel to Summerville.

Wando (2-1) @ Summerville (3-1): A sneaky good matchup from Summerville Friday night. We have to see if some of Wando's skill players will be back. Last week, Wando QB Bailey Hart was injured. He was replaced by Olivier Michaud, a sophomore. Without seven starters, Wando went into Lexington, on their Homecoming, and beat them by two points 25-23. That is one of the most impressive wins by a local team this year.

Summerville had a tough time last week, as they are nursing many of their early season players. Many of the players that were hurt are just coming back now. The Green Wave still have two more games after this before region play, but neither are easy, @ West Ashley and hosting Stratford.

West Ashley (2-1) @ Colleton County (1-3): Colleton County is a surprising 1-3 to start the season. All of their losses have been tough ones, with the largest margin 21-10 last week vs. O-W. Flip a few plays here and there, and we could be talking about a 4-0 team. But we are in the here and now. West Ashley's first road game was a big win at Bishop England. Now, they travel to Colleton County, who badly needs a win. West Ashley has Summerville, @ Fort D, and Wando next. They do not want to go in a slump. Both teams need this game.

Bluffton (2-2) @ Whale Branch (0-3) (Thursday, 7:30): Bluffton will play a rare Thursday night game this week at Whale Branch. This game will be televised live around the Savannah area on MySAV, and aired Sunday morning at 10 on WSAV.

3A: Georgetown (3-0) @ Carvers Bay (0-3): Georgetown is 3-0, and they travel to Carvers Bay, who is 0-3 for the first time in a long time.

Beaufort (1-2) @ Battery Creek (1-2): Something has to give here Friday night. Beaufort hasn't won a road game, while Battery Creek has not won a home game yet on-field this year. Battery Creek lost 55-14 last week to Hilton Head. Beaufort shut out Whale Branch last week 21-0.

Cane Bay (2-2) @ Hanahan (1-2): Much improved Cane Bay plays a Hanahan team that got their first win two weeks ago, shutting out Bishop England. Hanahan has one more road game next week at Stratford before they begin region play the next week against Hilton Head. They have four of their last six on road.

Richland Northeast (0-3) @ Orangeburg-Wilkinson (4-0): Orangeburg-Wilkinson goes for a 5-0 start on Friday night. O-W has given up a whopping 16 points in their first four ball games. The most they've allowed is 10 to Colleton County.

Garrett (3-1) @ Stall (1-2): A all North Charleston battle this week. Garrett is 3-1, and beat Military Magnet 34-6 last week in a big win. Garrett has one more non-region game against Burke next week before region play, while Stall hosts Colleton County next week.

2A: Woodland (2-3) @ Bamberg-Ehrhardt (3-0): After an 0-3 start, Woodland hopes to get back to .500, but they will have to do that against an undefeated Bamberg-Ehrhardt side who beat Barnwell last week.

Academic Magnet (2-1) @ Baptist Hill (0-3): Academic Magnet has looked very good in their last two wins, with Schlosser carrying the load. Baptist Hill has started a rough 0-3, scoring just twelve points in their first three games. Maybe they will end their slump this week.

Timberland (3-0) @ Bishop England (0-3): Bishop England has had a tough time in their first three games. Last week against Porter-Gaud though, they played much better, only losing by three points. Now, the Timberland Wolves come in. For several seasons, this was one of the best rivalries in the Lowcountry when both played in the same region. Now, Timberland plays in a region with mostly Pee Dee and Sumter area teams, but these two still have great battles together.

Branchville (1-2) @ North Charleston (1-2): North Charleston finally got their first win last week at Burke, winning by ten points, 42-32. Now they hope to even their record vs. Branchville.

Green Sea-Floyds (0-4) @ Waccamaw (2-2): 2-2 Waccamaw hopes to bounce back from their seven-point loss at Georgetown with a home game against Green Sea-Floyds.

1A: Burke (0-3) @ Lake Marion (1-2): Lake Marion becomes one of the last teams in the state to open up their home schedule; they started with 3 road games. Burke has already scored 79 points in their first three games; they only scored 72 in ten games last year.

Cross (1-2) @ Scott's Branch (1-2): Scott's Branch and Cross, each 1-2 teams, both hope to get to .500 this Friday night in an important game for each. Scott's Branch won at Burke 2 weeks ago.

Military Magnet (1-2) @ Ridgeland/Hardeeville (1-2): Military Magnet makes the long trip to Ridgeland/Hardeeville; Ridgeland lost last week at Estill.

James Island (3-1) @ St. John's (2-2): James Island makes the short trip to St. John's to play the Islanders. Both teams have been much better this season. St. John's had a tough loss at Screven County (GA) to open the year, but beat 3A Stall and 2A Whale Branch after that before falling 15-7 to Lake View. They become one of the few teams to host schools from all 4 classes, now hosting 4A James Island. The Trojans are 3-1, having shut out an opponent for the first time since 2005 last week against Stall. Buss Hamilton, their RB, ran for 4 TDs last week. This will be an interesting battle.

SCISA: Trinity-Byrnes (3-0) @ Colleton Prep (2-1): 3-0 Trinity-Byrnes travels to Walterboro to play the 2-1 Warhawks.
Pee Dee Academy (0-3) @ Dorchester Academy (0-4): One team will get their first win in this one.
Hilton Head Prep (2-1) @ Palmetto Christian (0-3): A rough start for Palmetto Christian, scoring just 16 in their first 3 games (0, 7, and 9 last week). They hope to improve this week.
Hilton Head Christian (1-2) @ First Baptist (0-4): Hilton Head Christian has a short 3-day turnaround after losing at Northwood Academy Monday night. First Baptist hopes for win #1.
Northwood Academy (3-0) @ Thomas Heyward (2-1): Northwood Academy and P&C Offensive Player of the Week Trevor McNeil, on a short turnaround, will travel to Thomas Heyward.
Pinewood Prep (2-2, 0-1) @ Ben Lippen (2-2, 1-2): Pinewood Prep, led by Louis Vaughan, will travel to Ben Lippen this week.
Hammond (3-0, 3-0) @ Porter-Gaud (3-1, 1-0): Erik Kimrey and Hammond come to Porter-Gaud this week in probably the best statewide SCISA game. PG is led by QB Kris Johnson, who won Channel 4's Athlete of the Week this week.
8-Man: Ridge Christian (1-3) @ Beaufort Academy (0-3): Beaufort Academy hopes to get first win of season on home field.
Cathedral Academy (2-1) @ Carolina Academy (2-1): Cathedral, after a win Monday at St. John's Christian, on three days rest goes to Lake City to play Carolina Academy.
Charleston Collegiate (1-2) @ Patrick Henry (3-1): Charleston Collegiate hopes to play better than last week; they lost 76-0 to Richard Winn.
St. John's Christian (1-2) @ Coastal Christian (0-4): After forfeiting last game, Coastal Christian hopes to have enough bodies to play St. John's. St. John's lost Monday night to Cathedral.
Faith Christian (3-1) @ James Island Christian (0-3): After last week's loss against Andrew Jackson, James Island Christian hopes to bounce back.

It will be another great week in high school football. Hope you enjoy the games!