At Williams Brice Stadium
Class 4A Division II
Greenwood EAGLES vs. Northwestern TROJANS
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COACHES: Gene Cathcart, Greenwood; Kyle Richardson, Northwestern
RECORDS: Greenwood 14-0, Northwestern 12-2
KEY PLAYERS: Northwestern QB Mason Randolph: This big passer does not get out of the pocket much but does plenty of damage when he can — an average 270 yards per game. Greenwood RB Octavious Morgan: He drives the Eagles’ offense with an average of 11.1 yards per carry.
OUTLOOK: Greenwood excels at pressuring quarterbacks and forcing turnovers, and will be looking to push the Trojans into a corner. But the Eagles will need balance on offense to capitalize, as the Trojans average nearly 42 points per game and more than 436 yards of offense. Greenwood must force Northwestern to play in the middle of the field; the Trojans score on 82 percent of their trips inside the 20.
Class 4A Division I
Gaffney INDIANS vs.
Dutch Fork SILVER FOXES
WHEN: 3 p.m.
COACHES: Dan Jones, Gaffney; Tom Knotts, Dutch Fork
RECORDS: Dutch Fork 11-3, Gaffney 11-3
KEY PLAYERS: Dutch Fork WR Jordan Berry: With the speed to beat coverage, soft hands and a long wingspan, a pass in Berry’s direction usually moves the chains. Gaffney LB Quan Weeks: With a nonstop motor, Weeks leads a Gaffney defense that has held opponents to an average of 18 points and 265 yards per game.
OUTLOOK: Dutch Fork will be looking for consistency on defense to counter Gaffney’s big-play ability. For Gaffney, slowing the Silver Foxes’ offense will not be enough. Yes, the Indians must find ways to contain running back Matt Colburn and shut down Dutch Fork’s momentum-building passing game led by Derek Olenchuk and Jordan Berry. But Gaffney’s biggest task will be topping Dutch Fork’s offensive production, which averages 41 points per game.
Hartsville RED FOXES vs. Union Co. YELLOW JACKETS
WHEN: 6:30 p.m.
COACHES: Jeff Calabrese, Hartsville; Steve Taneyhill, Union
RECORDS: Hartsville 14-0, Union 9-5
KEY PLAYERS: Hartsville QB Shaquille Johnson: The Red Foxes’ traffic director has a full backfield. His ability to coordinate the offense is key to keeping things moving. Union DE Jamarcus Henderson: He leads the defense with 101 tackles and 16 sacks, and is key to holding opposing offenses at bay.
OUTLOOK: After a long postseason on the road, the Yellow Jackets are a highly motivated bunch, led by first-year coach Steve Taneyhill. The undefeated Red Foxes have had an emotional season, but play with guts and smarts. They own a plus-9 turnover advantage, and both teams must focus on ball security. Union puts up big offensive numbers — an average of 480 yards per game — but Hartsville has a scoring advantage, with an average of 44 points to Union’s 35.
Akilah Imani Nelson