Lexington vs. Ridge View
Site: Wildcat Stadium.
Game notes: Lexington begins life without Shaq Roland, while Ridge View is looking to break out of a four-year slump Lexington will rebuilding offensively around quarterback Will Hunter. RV counters with a highly regarded defense headlined by aggressive linemen Obina Ntiasagwe and Curtis Bey Both teams are coming off disappointing season. The Wildcats wowed audiences during an 11-0 regular season, but suffered a first-round playoff exit. The Blazers finished 3-8 and missed the state playoff cut for the third year in a row.
Series history: The series resumes for the first time since 2007. Ridge View won the last four meetings to even the series at 5-5.
White Knoll vs. Mid-Carolina
Site: The Wolf Den.
Game notes: White Knoll let a 20-7 halftime lead slip away in a 34-20 loss to A.C. Flora last week. The Timberwolves piled up 267 rushing yards with Quinn Jones the headliner with 147 yards and two touchdowns on 11 totes. Lamar Ray chipped in 88 yards and one TD on 16 carries. Defensive end/outside linebackers Jordan LeMay (12 tackles, 4 TFL, 1 sack), Tyler Johnson (10 tackles, 2 TFL, 1 sack and 1 forced fumble) and Julian Johnson (11 tackles, 3 TFL, 1 sack, 1 pass deflection) are good games.
Series history: The schools are meeting for the first time in football.
Blythewood vs. South Pointe
Site: Blythewood Stadium.
Game notes: With 42 seniors in tow, Blythewood needs to be an in-the-moment kind of team this season. Much could depend on new quarterback Kylin Binn, a former Spring Valley player who has not seen any game action in two years After winning a second state championship in the program’s sixth year of existence, South Pointe made it to a third state championship game and claimed its second title in the program’s sixth season in 2011. The vaunted Stallions from Rock Hill took some graduation hits, but are still poised on a fifth consecutive double-win season and a deep playoff run. Quatterback Devin Pearson iced a 17-10 win over Irmo last week with a 20-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
Series history: South Pointe swept two games when the teams were region rivals in 2008-09.
Fort Mill vs. Lugoff-Elgin
Site: Bob Jones Stadium.
Game notes: Lugoff-Elgin and Fort Mill were once region foes. Now, both schools are fighting the numbers game as smaller Class 4A schools ... L-E is looking to bounce back from a injury-marred 2-9 season after a good showing in its first year in 4A in 2010. Fort Mill is back up to 4A this year after a 4-6 showing a year ago.
Series history: Fort Mill has won eight in a row against the Demons, including last season’s 28-9 success and enjoys a commanding 11-3 edge in the series.
Myrtle Beach vs. Irmo
Site: Doug Shaw Stadium.
Game notes: Talk about a tough way to start a season: Irmo, fresh from a 17-10 loss to defending 3A state champion South Pointe in Rock Hill, the Yellow Jackets hit the road against to the Grand Strand to face Myrtle Beach The Jackets managed only 121 offensive yards in the season opener. The only Irmo touchdown came on a trick play – a 28-yard pass from Trey Suber to Andre Jamison on a flea flicker Myrtle Beach, a program with a storied history, is riding a new wave of glory. Since 2005, the Seahawks are averaging 11 wins a season and have never failed to advance at least to the third round of the state playoffs. Along the way MB has played in three straight championship games – winning two (2008 and 2010).
Series history: Friday marks the first-ever football clash between the Yellow Jackets and the Seahawks.
St. Xavier vs. Dutch Fork
Site: Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium, Louisville. Time: Saturday, 8 p.m.
Game notes: Dutch Fork opens its third season under Tom Knotts at the Bluegrass Showcase against St. Xavier of Louisville, which opened the season last week with a 52-7 rout of Fern Creek The Silver Foxes have lined up an interesting non-region schedule that also include dates with in-state powers Dorman and Goose Creek.
Series history: Not only is this the first meeting of the Silver Foxes and the Tigers, it is the first time Dutch Fork has ever squared off against a, out-of-state team.