High School Sports

Football: Strom Thurmond at Newberry

Site: Mike Ware Field. Time: 7:30 p.m.

Strom Thurmond notes: The Rebels (8-0, 3-0) hung 64 points on Saluda last week, but the Thurmond calling card in 2008 is defense. Lee Sawyer’s Edgefield bunch has surrendered a paltry 37 points to date – the lowest yield in the state at any level – public or independent. The Rebels have four shutoutsthe books, and the opposition has scored just six touchdowns to date … Tra’ves Bush (105 tackles), Champ Merriweather (4 interceptions) and Cassius Hillary (5 sacks) are among the nominal leaders in the no-name defense … The 64-point eruption vs. Saluda last week was the fourth-highest in school history, and was the most points scored by the Rebs since a 64-0 win over Eau Claire in 1996 … Thurmond rolled for 535 yards and nine touchdowns, while limiting the Tigers to a net of 29 offensive yards … Unlike the past few seasons when the passing game was center stage on offense, the Rebels are more ground oriented in 2008. Maurice Brown has 626 yards on 86 carries and leads the team in scoring with 13 touchdowns. Javon Bown has 552 yards and nine TDs on 103 carries.

Newberry notes: The Bulldogs (3-5, 1-2) may have seen their playoff hopes slip away last week in a 28-17 loss at home to Batesburg-Leesville. Newberry finished with a significant advantage in offensive yards gained (370-134), but was doomed by seven turnovers … A 68-yard scoring pass from Lance Brehmer to Sam Chaplin staged the ‘Dogs to a 17-14 lead with eight minutes to go in the game. But after the defense forced a B-L punt, the Panthers scored the go-ahead touchdown on an interception return. Newberry then fumbled the ball away on the ensuing kickoff to set up another B-L touchdown that made the outcome academic with three minutes remaining … Brehmer had 191 passing yards, but was picked off three times. Montagus Caldwell had 86 yards rushing on 16 carries … Newberry has missed the playoff cut just one time since 1992 – in its final season in Class 3A (2003).

Series history: Newberry pulled even in the series by downing the Rebels in the last two encounters – 30-14 in 2001, 30-6 in 2000. Both teams have won nine games in the series since 1970. Every previous meeting as been a region contest, except for 1971 when Strom Thurmond played as an independent.