Baxter’s Blitz

Football: Defense dominates as South breaks losing streak

Also: Basketball programs on rebound after losing stars

scvarsity@sc.rr.comDecember 10, 2012 

WITH A BEAUTIFUL blue sky above and a breeze from the Atlantic Ocean behind, I spent Saturday watching the 64th annual North-South All-Star Football game in Myrtle Beach.

For the first time since 2004, the South beat the North, 23-0, with the scoring coming in the third quarter. Rules changes were made this year to open up the offenses and make the game more exciting for spectators. But defenses dominated.

Goose Creek linebacker Jalen Stevenson was the SCVarsity.com MVP. Newberry’s Tovarius Cureton was the North offensive MVP.

(North offensive MVP) and Spartanburg’s Simeon Byrd (North defensive MVP).

Overcoming talent drain

As basketball season starts, I wonder how the elite programs will deal with losing top players.

Irmo, which lost Clemson signee Jordan Roper, appears to be doing fine. The Yellow Jackets are 7-0 after knocking off Byrnes on Friday night, 64-50.

Lancaster is not faring as well after losing the state’s top player, Sindarius Thornwell, to Oak Hill Academy. The Bruins began 2-5 without the USC commitment.

Gaffney misses LJ Peak, who transferred to a private school in Chicago. The Indians started 3-2. It’s been reported that Peak might return for his senior season and possibly play football and basketball.

The Lexington Wildcats lost Shaq Roland, now a freshman football player at USC. They are 3-2 after dropping games to No. 1 Irmo and No. 8 Ridge View.

Star in the making

Last week, I told you about some rising young basketball stars. This past week, another underclassman has captured my attention.

Dreher sophomore Tevin Mack has helped the Dreher Blue Devils to a No. 9 ranking in Class 3A this week. Mack, who was very good in showcase events this past summer, is averaging 24 points per game.

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