Dutch Fork vs. Goose Creek
Site: Dutch Fork Stadium.
Game notes: The once woeful Gators have been transformed under Chuck Reedy, who has guided Goose Creek to 90-42 record in his 10 seasons at the helm. After a 1-10 start in 2002, GC has become an elite 4A program under Reedy, reaching the pinnacle last season with a 14-1 record and a Division II state championship. The Gators do it the old-school way – by running the football. The Gators (4-0) are averaging 358.3 yards per game on the ground this season. The leaders are Caleb Kinlaw (57-387-5) and Tramel Terry (32-322-11). QB Dantez Bennamon is 27-for-42 passing for 298 yards for four touchdowns and just one interception. Terry is the favorite receiving option for Bennamon with 17 catches for 194 yards and another score. Daylin Julius (54 tackles, 7 sacks) and Jalen Stevens (44 tackles, 2 sacks) are the big-play men of defense. Goose Creek carries an 18-game winning streak into its first game at Dutch Fork and a 19-game streak against in-state opponents. The Gators have won 31 of 33 outings since 2010 Dutch Fork’s rugged non-region slate continues. Last week the Silver Foxes (2-2) fell 45-21 on the road at Dorman. The host Cavaliers out-scored DF 31-7 after the first quarter. Trey Gregg had 109 yards rushing on 18 carries and one touchdown. Derek Olenchuk was 20-for-37 passing for 241 yards, but was intercepted three times. Jordan berry finished with 10 catches for 157 yards. The big problem was on defense. The Silver Foxes surrendered 530 yards to Dorman, including 358 on the ground. That does not bode well for the unit this week against a physical, accomplished running team.
Series history: This is the first meeting of the teams.
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Ridge View vs. Westwood
Site: Blythewood District 2 Stadium.
Game notes: For the second week in a row Ridge View lost in Fort Mill Township, this time suffering a bitter 35-28 loss to Nation Ford. The Blazers (2-2) evened the score at 28-28 on an 87-yards kickoff return touchdown by Demario Evans. It was actually a fumble recovery by Evans, who scooped up a fumble by teammate Tavaris Anderson and took it to the house. NF, however, responded with a game-winning scoring drive. The bottom line for Ridge View was four turnovers. Nolan Randolph had 153 yards passing and one scoring throw. Gary Bradshaw darted for 139 yards and one touchdown. Linebackers John McCall and Will Samuel led the hit parade on defense with 13 and 12 tackles, respectively. Evans had nine tackles and two interceptions ... Westwood (0-4) is coming off its second straight blowout loss to a District 2 foe, this one a 43-7 setback against Spring Valley. The youthful Redhawks defense is long on speed and short on size, and things have been difficult of late against mature, Class 4A teams. The offense has plagued by turnovers and the lack of a consistent ground game. Westwood has turned the ball over 10 times so far and has been out-gained 987 yards to 214 on the ground by the opposition. Davis King was 19-for-34 passing for 181 yards against Spring Valley and former Viking Miquelle Canaday had 42 yards rushing and scored the team’s lone touchdown.
Series history: Westwood’s inaugural football tour against Richland District 2 foes continues with its first contest against Ridge View.
White Knoll vs. Lugoff-Elgin
Site: The Wolf Den.
Game notes: White Knoll (3-1) is coming off a bye week and has won three in a row since falling to A.C. Flora in the season opener. The Timberwolves routed Carolina Forest 46-19 in their most recent outing. WK rumbled by 473 yards rushing in the game with Quinn Jones and Lamar Ray doing the heavy lifting. Jones ran for 219 yards and two touchdowns on merely 12 carries, while Ray piled up 153 yards and scored twice on 16 attempts. The defense allowed just 41 yards on the ground, 118 through the air. Jordan LeMay and Tyler Johnson had big games on defense. LeMay had eight total tackles, seven solos and three tackles for loss. Johnson had seven tackles, including three tackles for loss and one sack Lugoff-Elgin’s season-long defensive woes continued in a 46-35 loss to archrival Camden. The Demons (0-4) were hit for 516 yards by the previously winless Bulldogs, and the unit is allowing an average of 397 yards and 42 points a game this season. L-E is mired in a 10-game losing streak that began last year. It is the fourth double-digit losing slump in program history, and the first in 18 years. Jalen McCaskill and Shon Belton provided some offensive highlights against Camden. McCaskill finished with 126 yards rushing on 14 carries and scored one touchdown. Belton ran for 87 yards and two scores.
Series history: L-E scored a 17-10 win last season to up its series lead to 4-2.
Lexington vs. Cooper City, Fla.
Site: WildCat Stadium.
Game notes: On paper, this inter-state clash looked pretty appealing with both teams coming off 10-win season. But Cooper City is 1-1 and Lexington stands at 0-4. The Wildcats dropped another heartbreaker last week, this time by a 26-24 count to Irmo. QB Will Hunter finally flashed the form he exhibited in his first two seasons under center – connecting on 30 of 56 passes for 321 yards and one touchdown. The junior is 68-for-122 for 760 yards and four TDs for the season. The top receivers include Ryan McCrary (20-208-0), Bryson Stokes (17-176-1) and Altyre Walker (15-251-3). Stokes grabbed 11 throws for 123 yards and one TD against Irmo. Grays Chumley is the top running threat with 418 yards and three scores on 68 carries.
Series history: Not only is it the first meeting of the Sunshine State Cowboys and the Midlands Wildcats, it is Lexington’s first-ever game against an out-of-state opponent.
Richland NE vs. Orangeburg-Wilkinson
Site: Harry Parone Stadium.
Game notes: Things have not been going well of late for Richland NE (2-2). Early season concerns about the defense have become full-fledge issues in back-to-back losses to Lower Richland and Aiken. Last week, the Cavaliers allowed more than 450 yards rushing in a 41-33 loss to Aiken one week after a 40-33 setback against offensively challenged Lower Richland. The troubling aspect of the defense goes deeper than just the recent setbacks. First-year Westwood had its best offensive game of the season against the Cavaliers and South Aiken nearly pulled off a come-from-behind win in the season opener after losing blue-chip quarterback prospect Bo Baldwin early in the first quarter. Moreover, RNE didn’t have a particularly good offensive outing, statistically at least, against Aiken. A.C. Whaley had 200 yards passing and three scoring throws, but he connected on just 12 of 32 attempts and was intercepted three times. The Cavaliers running game produced a paltry 19 yards on 11 attempts Orangeburg-Wilkinson (3-1) is riding a three-game winning streak, including a 28-20 win over Lower Richland. The Bruins, now at the 3A level, crushed neighboring Calhoun County 48-0 last week as quarterback Austin Bradley was 13-for-17 passing for 145 yards and two touchdowns in limited playing time.
Series history: RNE has won five of the last six meetings with the Bruins to assume a 13-9 series lead.
South Aiken vs. Spring Valley
Site: Thoroughbred Stadium.
Game notes: Spring Valley (4-0) is off to its best start since 2006 and is looking to go 5-0 out of the starting gate for the ninth time in school history. The latest success was a 43-7 rout of first-year Westwood. Spring Valley ran wild against the small, inexperienced Redhawks defense – ringing up 419 yards and averaging 9.7 yards per attempt. Malik Wilson had an astonishing 173 yards on just five carries and scored two touchdowns. John Miller also had fun with 131 yards and two TDs on 15 totes. Wilson’s scoring runs covered 65 and 74 yards and Miller had a 76-yard dash for six. To date, Miller has 363 yards rushing and seven touchdowns. Chaz Tallant (46 tackles) and Josh Harlan (37 tackles, 2 interceptions) are top performers on defense South Aiken (0-5) has not recovered from the injury loss of blue-chip quarterback prospect Bo Baldwin, who suffered a broken right hand on the Thoroughbreds first offensive possession of the season in Week 0 against Richland Northeast. Last week, the T-Breds were schooled by Strom Thurmond, 52-7. South Aiken’s defense is allowing an average of 42 points a game so far.
Series history: The teams are meeting for the first time.
Sumter vs. Blythewood
Site: Sumter Memorial Stadium.
Game notes: Blythewood built a 21-6 halftime lead over Lancaster and held on for a 21-12 win. It was the third win in a row for the Bengals after a season-opening loss to South Pointe. The defense limited Lancaster to just 37 net yards rushing on 30 attempts, and came up with three sacks, three interceptions and one fumble recovery. Tony Rebollo was in the spotlight with six tackles, one interception and one fumble recovery. Jalen Williams was credited with five tackles, four tackles for loss and two sacks. In all, Blythewood made 14 tackles behind the line of scrimmage. Joe Kelly and Devin Albert also picked off Lancaster passes. Offensively, Dean Beckford finished with 9-0 yards rushing and two touchdown runs and quarterback Kylen Binn had 87 yards passing and one scoring toss to Shyheim Brown Sumter (2-2) pulled out a 35-34 overtime win at North Augusta last week to even its record. Rayshad Bennett was the Gamecocks offensive standout with 164 yards rushing on 29 carries. The ultimate difference was an interception return touchdown by Antonio Rembert. Sumter scored first in OT, but North August failed on a two-point conversion bid after scoing a touchdown on its extra possession.
Series history: This is the first regular-season meeting of the teams. Sumter was a 45-0 winner in the first round of the 2009 state playoffs in only other encounter.
Aiken vs. Irmo
Site: Hagood Stadium.
Game notes: Irmo (1-3) picked up its first win of the season last week, downing Lexington 26-24 despite managing just 10 first downs, 44 net yards rushing and just 203 overall offensive yards. But the Yellow Jackets parlayed three touchdowns, one field goal, one safety and three takeaways on defense into a much-needed win. Demetri Lewis was the nominal offensive star with 64 yards passing, 40 yards rushing, one touchdown run and one scoring pass Aiken (2-2) balanced the books with a 41-33 win over Richland Northeast behind Nakeen Spann who exploded for 247 yards on 20 carries and scoring four touchdowns.
Series history: Irmo has won three in a row and six of the last seven outings against the Hornets to assume a 12-10 series lead.