No one has played more close games, among Midlands football teams left in the playoffs, than Blythewood.
Seven of the Bengals’ 12 games this season have been decided by 10 points or less. Blythewood is 4-3 in games decided by 10 or fewer points, including last week’s 29-27 victory over North Augusta in the first round of the Class 4A Division II playoffs. Cody Turner’s 20-yard field goal as time expired gave the Bengals the victory in their first home playoff game since 2010.
“We about cracked there, but they’ve got to keep believing in one another no matter what adversity they face, and I was real proud of them,” Blythewood coach Dan Morgan said after the win.
Blythewood’s three losses have come by a combined 12 points. The Bengals might be in for another close one this week when they travel to Lexington for a second-round matchup. The Wildcats defeated Blythewood 21-20 in September.
Newberry, Fairfield Central to continue rivalry
It turns out Friday won’t be the last time Newberry and Fairfield Central will face each other on the football field.
FC coach Demetrius Davis said the two schools plan to play in the next two years in non-region play. The Bulldogs and Griffins will meet in Week 4 next season.
Fairfield and Newberry were in Region 3-2A the past two seasons, but will be moving up to Class 3A and will be in different regions next year because of the South Carolina High School League’s 2016-2018 realignment.
Newberry will be in 3-3A and in the Upper State, while FC is headed to 5-3A in the Lower State.
Newberry and Fairfield Central’s matchup Friday in the Class 2A Division I upper state playoffs will be the fourth-straight year they have played each other in the postseason, and sixth overall since 2012.
Dutch Fork’s Knotts in running for Panthers’ Coach of the Year
Dutch Fork football coach Tom Knotts is one of 10 from North and South Carolina to earn Coach of the Week honors this year by the Carolina Panthers.
Knotts and the others will be honored at Carolina’s game on Dec. 13, and the Carolina Panthers High School Coach of the Year will be named. Lexington, N.C.’s, Kwayu Graham won the award in 2012.
Knotts has led Dutch Fork to three straight state championship appearances. The Silver Foxes host Dorman on Friday in the second round of the Class 4A Division I playoffs.
North-South roster changes
Saluda’s Jamarion Mathis and Clinton’s Antayvious Cook have been added to the North roster for the Touchstone Energy Cooperatives All-Star Game on Dec. 14 in Myrtle Beach, according to the (Chester) News and Reporter.
Mathis and Cook, both receivers, replace Pendleton’s Malik Grate and Union County’s Roscoe Johnson. Grate was moved to the Shrine Bowl roster to replace Conway’s Bryan Edwards, who won’t play in the game after suffering an ACL injury last month. Johnson, a North Carolina commit, also will miss the game because of an injury.
More changes are likely once the Class 3A and 4A championship games are set because they will be played the same day as the all-star game.
Brunson sets Louisville visit
Richland Northeast linebacker T.J. Brunson announced this week he will take his official visit to Louisville on Dec. 4.
Brunson committed to Louisville in the summer and told The State last week he was still favoring the Cardinals, but has made a couple of visits to South Carolina games this year. He said he was waiting to see how the Gamecocks coaching search turns out.
Brunson led the Cavaliers with 130 tackles and was selected to play in the Shrine Bowl.
Felder funeral service set
A funeral service for Sterling Felder will be held at Camden High on Sunday at 1 p.m.
Felder, a Camden football player, died Monday from injuries suffered in a car accident earlier this month.
Lexington, Chapin win cheer titles
Lexington and Chapin each won state championships Saturday in competitive cheer.
The Wildcats won their second title in three years, capturing the Class 4A title. Chapin won the 3A championship for the ninth time since 2005.
Lexington finished with a total of 360, edging defending state champion Dutch Fork by four points. River Bluff (351) was fourth.
Chapin had a score of 341 points, eight more than second-place Belton-Honea Path. A.C. Flora (249) was sixth and Brookland-Cayce (231) seventh.
In Class 2A, Mid-Carolina finished second behind Chesnee.
Nine Midlands runners make Shrine Bowl run team
Nine Midlands cross country runners recently were chosen for the Shrine Bowl run team.
The boys runners selected were Spring Valley’s Caleb Peart Lexington’s Will Bugeski and Hunter Janus, Irmo’s Sam Padula and Dreher’s Theo Kahler.
Chapin’s Alexa Golbus, Dutch Fork’s Hope Whisman, Spring Valley’s Matyina Novotny, and A.C. Flora’s Susannah Cate made the girls team.
Runners are chosen based on times from the state meet. The Shrine Bowl race will take place Dec. 21 in the morning before the Shrine Bowl football game in Spartanburg.