The heavyweight slugfest between Crestwood and Sumter Friday at Memorial Stadium figures to be one of the most attractive season-opening games in the state. Crestwood went 11-3 last season and advanced to the Class 3A Lower State title game before losing to eventual state champion Wilson. Sumter went 10-3 with a young team that matured much quicker than anticipated.
Both teams are considered to be prime players in their respective classifications this season.
Site: Memorial Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Crestwood notes: The Knights return may of the key players that made the 2007 the most successful in school history, at least in terms of playoff duration … The offense will be led by the Wilson brothers – quarterback Treginald and running back Terrence. Treginald Wilson ran for 732 yards and 13 touchdowns and passed for 402 yards and four scores. Though the Wing T running game will remain Crestwood’s break and butter, Treginald may be given a few more passing opportunities. Terrence Wilson led the team in rushing last season with 1,326 yards and 12 TDs, and may get more than 200 carries this time around … The returning hands on defense include linemen Darius Wallace (77 tackles, 14 TFL, 15 sacks), Javon Weston (71 tackles, 13 TFL, 2 sacks) and Travis McConico (59 tackles, 14 TFL, 3 sacks) and defensive back Randy Moulds (51 tackles, 10 pass break ups).
Sumter notes: The Gamecocks probably didn’t expect such a high return from a young, inexperienced team last season. But this year, big things are anticipated with the return of such standouts as running back Roderick McDowell, quarterback Stephen Curtis, linebacker Quinn McClendon and defensive backs Kevin Sinkler and Cardell Scarborough … McDowell, a Clemson commitment, is a true game breaker. He ran for 1,399 yards and 21 touchdowns, caught 17 passes for 293 yards and five scores and returning 11 kickoffs for 262 yards and two more TDs … Curtis was a sophomore sensation, completing 112 of 196 passes for 1,789 yards and 18 touchdowns with just nine interceptions … McClendon led the team with 157 tackles, Sinkler had eight interceptions and Scarborough picked off five.
Series history: Sumter continued its mastery of the Knights with a 28-13 win last season. The Gamecocks enjoy a pronounced 10-2 lead in the series that began when Crestwood opened in 1996. Sumter also dominated the series with old Hillcrest (Dalzell) – the school that closed to make way for Crestwood – with a 22-4 advantage.