Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Week 3 preview/wk 2 recap

Last week was a week which was upside down in football circles. South Carolina and Clemson had both lost their opening games. The Citadel had lost to Coastal Carolina. Goose Creek had lost two football games in a row for the first time since 2008! SC State and Charleston Southern were the only local winners. If you had DirecTV, Channel 5, WCSC was unavailable. Orangeburg viewers were missing Channel 10, WIS.

This week, things seemed to return to normal. Clemson and South Carolina both played well in wins. The Citadel played well against Florida State. Charleston Southern won again. Goose Creek went back to their winning ways. Channel 5 was restored Sunday afternoon.

There were a wealth of good high school games this week in the area. Summerville tore apart Berkeley in the Game of the Week. Even though they only won 48-28, a 48-0 lead at halftime is very impressive against a team the quality of Berkeley. James Island beat Colleton County on a 70 yard tipped pass on fourth down late in the game to go to 2-1. Ashley Ridge, maybe the surprise team in the area this season, beat Wando at home to go to 3-0.

Stall and North Charleston went to four overtimes, actually interrupted by reported gunfire. Stall won 41-40. Porter-Gaud shut out Cardinal Newman, while Scott's Branch won at Burke. Hanahan beat Bishop England for their first win of the season, and Academic Magnet had a big win over Military Magnet with their RB, Nate Schlosser, gaining almost 300 yards.

Here is one of the plays of the year so far in South Carolina. This play decided the Colleton County-James Island game on Friday. It's fourth down, about fifteen yards to go. About three minutes left in the game. James Island is down by four points, 21-17. Trojans QB Gage Moloney is on his own 30 yard line. He throws up it for grabs. Two DBs are tightly covering in a jump ball situation. Watch what happens next. From Neal Kinard.

This week is one of the best weeks of the year. It will be one filled with several huge games, including one between the two best teams in the area. Rain could also be a factor. As I am writing this (Wednesday night), there is a 40% chance of rain for Friday night. It is higher in other parts of the state. It is possible that games could be delayed or postponed. All games start at 7:30 unless noted.

4A: Summerville (3-0) @ Goose Creek (1-1): Summerville and Goose Creek have played some great battles over the years. They are the two best teams and programs in the area, and have major contrasts. Goose Creek was built up with coach Chuck Reedy from the ground up, going from maybe the worst 4A team in the state to the best, while John McKissick's Summerville teams have only had two losing seasons in his entire tenure.

Before Reedy, Goose Creek had just gone through a win less season in 2001, and had won just two playoff games in their entire history, both on the road. Under Reedy, they've won, in order, 1, 5, 8, 7, 9, 8, 9, 10, 13, 14 (the state championship in 2011), 13 (2012, when they were kicked out of playoffs), and 12 games. 

That has to be one of the biggest turnarounds in state history. Now, Goose Creek is one of the best programs in the state. I didn't forget about the game Friday night. Summerville has been banged up lately, losing several of their major players in the Cane Bay game. They beat Berkeley badly last week, in a game which was much worse than the 48-28 score line, but Goose Creek is easily the best team they have played, and maybe the best they'll play all season. Goose Creek, even without Pedro Manigault, and with a new QB, is still one of the best 4A teams in the state. This may be one of the games of the year in the Lowcountry.

Ashley Ridge (3-0) @ West Ashley (2-0): Another very good game. This could be the game of the week on any other week. Two of the better QBs in the Lowcountry, Justin Berry and Steven Duncan, will face off. West Ashley beat Hilton Head last week 60-30, but Ashley Ridge with all of their firepower will be a tougher challenge. West Ashley's home crowd hopes to impact the game, as they helped the Wildcats to be the Channel 2 Team of the Week last week. Their RB, Cameron Byas, was named the Live 5 Five-Star Player of the Week last week.

Ashley Ridge beat a good Wando team at home, bringing themselves to a 3-0 start. This game is a very important one for them, as they host Stratford next, followed by road games at Cane Bay and Goose Creek. Whoever wins this will keep the momentum they have through the early season.

Fort Dorchester (3-0) @ Stratford (1-1): An important battle between two of the better squads in the area. Stratford ran into a buzz saw in Joe Marion's home debut, losing to a Sumter team that made it to the 4A finals last year. Stratford only lost by seven though, so they played the Gamecocks close all game.

Fort Dorchester, on the other hand, has blown out their first three opponents, with the closest game being a 16 point win last week against a game Cane Bay side. Fort D has some great athletes, and a student section called The Riot. They plan on bringing some of them to Stratford this week. Fort Dorchester, led by Kobe Garrett, will hope to engineer a win on the home field of the Knights.

Wando (1-1) @ Lexington (1-1): Wando makes the long trip to Lexington on Friday night. Lexington won 22-0 last week in a road game against a good Blythewood team, and were named the Midlands team of the week by The State. Lexington's RB, Slade Carroll, ran for 188 yards and 2 touchdowns, and DE Michael Manning had an amazing 5 1/2 sacks.

Wando has RB Kenny Waring, QB Bailey Hart and several other good offensive skill players. This battle will be a very interesting one to see between one of the best defenses in the state and one of the best offenses.

Stall (1-1) @ James Island (2-1): A battle of new coaches on the island this week. Joe Bessinger has led an improved Stall team, who won last week after losing 34-8 to St. John's in their opener. James Island is 2-1 on the year, and have played well to open the season, with their only loss to Ashley Ridge. The play above was a huge play in last week's game. Colleton County had just taken the league minutes earlier on a blocked punt and TD run.

The winner of this game will gain some added momentum heading into the middle of the season, with this battle between previous region rivals.

Sol C. Johnson (GA) (0-2) @ Bluffton (1-2) : What has been a tough season for Bluffton got even tougher in the last couple of days, as South Carolina commit and five-star prospect, defensive end Shameik Blackshear, suffered a major knee injury in the game against Effingham County August 29. He is out for the year. A very tough loss for Bluffton, who has already lost a game on forfeit this year. They face Sol C. Johnson from Savannah, who haven't had a home game yet this year.

Orangeburg-Wilkinson (3-0) @ Colleton County (1-2): Colleton County has had two very tough losses to start the season, losing games by 1 and 3 points. O-W, on the other hand, have only given up six points in their first three ballgames, winning by 22-0 last week against Lower Richland. This week will be their toughest challenge so far, as the 3A squad moves up in competition to play a rising 4A squad. Colleton really needs a win in this ball game, as they host West Ashley next.

3A: Cane Bay (1-2) @ Berkeley (1-2): Cane Bay has been one of the surprises in the area, even starting 1-2. They gave Summerville a great game, losing by 2, and last week, only lost 40-24 to Fort Dorchester. Berkeley scored 28 points in the second half, but that was after the game was decided. They have to make that effort again this Friday night in order to get their second win of the season. A good Berkeley team can compete with anyone. Next week is an off week for Slicker. He will be at a game in the area.

Waccamaw (2-1) @ Georgetown (2-0): An improved Waccamaw side travels to Georgetown to face the undefeated Bulldogs. Even without QB Jarvis Brown, they beat Andrews last week 14-6 on their home field. This week could be a tougher game.

Whale Branch (0-2) @ Beaufort (0-2): Whale Branch has lost their past two games by 14 and 6 points, respectively. They travel to Beaufort in a required game for Beaufort County regulations. Beaufort is hoping to get their first win of the season in this one after back-to-back tough losses.

2A: Woodland (1-2) @ Bethune-Bowman (0-3): Woodland has started a surprising 1-2. They head to Bethune-Bowman, a school in Orangeburg County, to try and get back to an even record. They beat Lake Marion last week, 20-7.

Branchville (1-1) @ Academic Magnet (1-1): Academic Magnet gets back to Ravenel Stadium to host a Branchville team that just started football back up a few years ago. Nate Schlosser, a RB only standing 5'5, will hope to match his stats last week, when he was named the P&C offensive player of the week.

Hilton Head (2-1) @ Battery Creek (1-1): Battery Creek suffered many injuries during their game against Bluffton (which they won by forfeit), reportedly losing as many as 15 players due to injuries. They'll need a lot of players in their game against Hilton Head. One of the best WRs in the area, Aaron Frazier, is a major part of the Seahawks team, and WR Tyler Hamilton also adds a dimension to the Hilton Head passing game.

Porter-Gaud (2-1) @ Bishop England (0-2) (MyTV Charleston): A very interesting game from Daniel Island. The two most well-known private schools in the Charleston area meet up in one of the fiercest rivalries in the state. A few years ago, the rivalry was halted for four seasons after a group of BE students beat up a Porter-Gaud student. They started back in 2012, and the atmosphere is one of the best in the area when they play.

BE has had a very rough year so far, only scoring 14 points so far in a 55-14 rout by West Ashley. They were shut out last week by Hanahan. Porter-Gaud has shut out their last two opponents, PCA and Cardinal Newman. This game will be a test for both squads, as they will play to see who gets bragging rights until basketball season.

Andrews (1-2) @ Carvers Bay (0-2): Carvers Bay has had a tough time in their first two games; they host Andrews this week. Andrews has also lost two in a row.

Timberland (2-0) @ Crestwood (0-2): Timberland heads to Sumter this week to play Crestwood, who have lost their first two games to Sumter and Fairfield Central. Timberland shut out Cross last week, 42-0.

1A: Hunter-Kinard-Tyler (3-0) @ Baptist Hill (0-2): Baptist Hill had last week off. Hopefully the bye week has fixed some troubles for them, as they only scored six points in their first two games.

North Charleston (0-2) @ Burke (0-2) (6:30pm): Burke has played much better in their first two ball games, scoring 34 in their first game and losing 18-13 to Scott's Branch last week. North Charleston had a tough loss last week, but one of these teams will get their first win this week.

Cross (0-2) @ C.E. Murray (1-2): Cross begins an incredible five week stretch without a home game with a battle in Greeleyville against C.E. Murray. Their next home game is Oct. 17.

Creek Bridge (0-3) @ Lincoln (2-1): Lincoln actually has a winning record after 3 games. With a win this week, they could match their highest win total for a season since 2000.

Garrett (2-1) @ Military Magnet (1-1): A battle between two nearby North Charleston schools. The winner of this will have a winning record through 3 games.

St. John's (2-1) @ Lake View (1-1): St. John's and Brad Bowles makes the long trip to Lake View near the NC line to play the Wild Gators.

SCISA: Colleton Prep (1-1) @ Dorchester Academy (0-3): Colleton Prep and Dorchester Academy battle in a region game.
Hilton Head Prep (1-1) @ Bible Baptist (1-2): Hilton Head Prep lost last week; they head to Savannah to play Bible Baptist.
St. Andrew's (0-3) @ First Baptist (0-3): A team will get their first win in this one. First Baptist lost by 6 to Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach last week.
Hilton Head Christian (1-1) @ Northwood Academy (2-0): Northwood Academy opens up their new field at Cane Bay this week, hosting Hilton Head Christian. Northwood has looked impressive in their first two battles.
Palmetto Christian (0-2) @ Pinewood Prep (1-2): Since Pinewood's 46-0 shutout in their first game, they've only scored 7 points in their last two games. They host Palmetto Christian this week.

8-Man: Beaufort Academy (0-2) @ Patrick Henry (2-1): Patrick Henry has had a good start to the season, winning two of their first three games.
Cathedral Academy (1-1) @ St. John's Christian (1-1): An important game in Moncks Corner as Cathedral faces St. John's.
Charleston Collegiate (1-1) @ Richard Winn (3-0): Richard Winn has scored at least 52 points in all 3 games this season so far. Can the Sundevils slow them down?
Carolina Academy (1-1) @ Coastal Christian (0-3): Coastal Christian is forfeiting the game because they are down to 9 healthy players. They will go to 0-4, Carolina Academy 2-1.
Ridge Christian (1-2) @ Faith Christian (2-1): These schools are less than two miles apart off Royle Road in Summerville. Now, they will be playing football against each other. Is this the closest rivalry in the state?
James Island Christian (0-2) @ Andrew Jackson (1-2): James Island Christian makes the long trip over to Andrew Jackson to try and earn their first W of the year.

Enjoy the football!

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