As the final seconds ticked away on Dorman's 10-0 victory against visiting Gaffney on Friday night, a ragged chant arose from the home stands.
"We want the Rebels," the fans said.
The Cavalier faithful will get their wish thanks to 10 unanswered second-half points and a gem of a defensive effort that helped Dorman (13-1) advance past Gaffney and into the Class 4A Division I state final next weekend against Byrnes at Williams-Brice Stadium.
Byrnes (13-1) defeated Spartanburg 51-16 to set up the meeting for the state title and a rematch of the contest that ultimately determined the Region II-4A championship. Byrnes won the regular-season meeting with Dorman 17-10.
After battling to a scoreless tie after the first half, which featured missed field goals by both teams, the Cavaliers took control. It was the third time in their past four outings that the Cavaliers had struggled through a first-half stalemate only to win the second half and the game.
"The last three games we've struggled in the first half, and our first game against (Gaffney) was similar to this," Dorman coach Dave Gutshall said. "So, I told them at halftime that it would be our game in the second half."
Throwing from the "Wildcat" formation for the first time this season, A.J. Booker connected on a 25-yard pass to Johnny Foster, Dorman's starting quarterback who lined up as a slot receiver, with 8:11 left in the third quarter, capping a nine-play, 80-yard drive.
"It's something we drew up, and we went out and executed," Booker said.
Paul Inclan's 32-yard field goal with 11:14 to play put the Cavaliers ahead 10-0 and capped a 13-play, 83-yard drive that was set up by John Parker's interception of a D'Edward Burris pass at the Dorman 7.
Like Gaffney, the Cavaliers came into the semifinal matchup averaging more than 31 points per game, but the Indians' defense controlled the game for most of the night, holding the Cavaliers to 249 yards of offense and sacking Foster five times.
Gaffney coach Phil Strickland said that he thought coming into the game that holding Dorman's potent offense to 10 points would be enough to secure the victory and a berth in the championship game.
"I thought so, but, on the other hand, I knew how good Dorman's defense was," Strickland said. "But, yeah, 10 points, I'd think we'd win the ballgame."
Burris, Gaffney's do-it-all quarterback, was intercepted three times, including twice by junior Adam Humphries. Burris, who was harassed all night and sacked seven times, finished with 147 yards on 9-of-20 passing and the three interceptions. He ran for 75 yards on 26 carries, but the Dorman defense stifled Burris for 61 yards in losses on sacks and tackles-for-loss.
"We got a shutout against Irmo, and now we've got one against Gaffney," Dorman senior defensive lineman Cortez Carson said. "On defense, we know we're ready."
The Indians (10-4) mounted an 11-play, 79-yard drive following Incan's field goal, but Andrew Bailey blocked a 26-yard field-goal attempt by Gaffney's Josh Harris, preserving the shutout and, more importantly, keeping Dorman's two-score lead intact.