Three Questions Answered
Heathwood Hall is a serious threat to Hammond
A rivalry is always more fun when both teams are championship caliber. That's certainly the case this season. Unbeaten Heathwood Hall's 24-10 win at Ben Lippen will move it up to No. 2 in the SCISA 3A behind the three-time defending state champion Skyhawks (4-0).
Irmo is more than Mustafa Greene
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That's not to say the senior running back is a slouch. He is the best running back in S.C. not named Marcus Lattimore. But the Yellow Jackets also have wide receiver David Frazier and quarterback David Olson, who connected on two touchdown passes in the first half of Irmo's 49-15 victory against Spring Valley Friday night.
Lexington is in a down year
The Wildcats were a powerful bunch last season, reaching the second round of the Class 4A playoffs. Coach Allen Sitterle, who knows all about winning state championships, is finding it difficult to maintain consistency. The Wildcats have been outscored 120-51 while losing three in a row.
Three Things We Don't Know
Does Blythewood have the defense to challenge in Region 4-4A?
The Bengals (4-1) have enough offense to make a run for the top of the region with senior running back Brandon Wilds and junior quarterback Danny Young helping them average 31 points per game. But Blythewood's defense allowed 28 points to a Dutch Fork team that scored seven against Ridge View the week prior. The Bengals are allowing 19.4 points per game.
How will Keenan react to its loss at Batesburg-Leesville?
For the second consecutive season, the Raiders started 3-0 and lost to Batesburg-Leesville. Keenan had hoped to make a statement by beating the Panthers on the road Friday night. Instead, the Raiders lost 37-21. Keenan responded well a year ago, going 8-2 in the regular season. It will need that type of resolve once again.
Will anyone hold Airport under 40 points between now and the Class 3A playoffs?
The Eagles two-pronged attack with quarterback W.T. Murden and running back Ryan Smith has topped the 40-point mark in three of their four games this season. They have only one game remaining against a team with a winning record, Midland Valley (3-1) at home on Oct. 2. The Mustangs better plan on scoring a ton if they want to win.
Three Top Performers
David Nidiffer, Hammond
Threw a school-record six touchdown passes for the top-ranked Skyhawks and completed 22 of 28 passes for 328 yards in a 40-7 victory against Thomas Heyward.
Brandon Quattlebaum, Dutch Fork
Nearly helped the Silver Foxes upset Blythewood by accounting for 272 yards of offense. Quattlebaum rushed for 141 yards with two touchdowns, caught seven passes for 108 yards and threw a 23-yard touchdown pass in a 31-28 Blythewood win.
W.T. Murden, Airport
Another incredible night for the senior quarterback as he threw for 183 yards and three touchdowns while also rushing for 148 yards.
Three Top Games for Next Week
Mid-Carolina (3-1) at Chapin (4-0)
The final nonregion games for schools which are neighboring rivals along the Lexington-Newberry country border. Chapin is playing well under new coach Scott Earley, while Mid-Carolina looks like a force in Region 3-2A.
Calhoun County (4-0,1-0) at Allendale-Fairfax (4-0, 1-0)
Two of Class A's top teams in a key Region 5-A game. Calhoun County is ranked No. 3, while Allendale-Fairfax is No. 6. With No. 4 Bamberg-Ehrhardt also in the region, the loser of this game might be doomed to a third-place finish.
Greenwood (3-1) at Sumter (2-2)
The Gamecocks lost their first two games but have rebounded to reach .500. A win here would tell us how far they have come. Greenwood's lone loss came to third-ranked Dorman.
Three Sound Bytes
"It was only one step on the long road, but, boy, that was a big one to take." - Heathwood Hall coach Rip Blackstone, after his team beat Ben Lippen 24-10.
"Both of them are special athletes and they put on a show in the first half. I'm glad they play for us." - Irmo coach Bob Hanna, on running back Mustafa Greene and wide receiver David Frazier.
"We played good. We played bad. We played good. We played bad. We're struggling offensively to stay consistent." Spring Valley coach Quay Farr on his 2-2 Vikings.