A.C. FLORA vs. SWANSEA
Site: Doug Bennett Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The revitalized Falcons (3-0) are looking to start the season with four straight wins for the first time since 1974. Swansea will be the Falcons fourth straight Class 2A opponent ... The ACF running game has been impressive. Edward Kirkland (32-222-2) and Sterling Mitchell (29-213-2) have equally shared the load ... Dante Lovett (49 tackles) and Justice Walker have been the defensive standouts. Walker has 35 tackles, 2 TFL, 2 interceptions, 2 PBUs and 1 fumble recovery ... The most impressive ACF win to date? The 33-32 win over Columbia in Week 1 Swansea is off to a 2-1 start under new coach Chad Leaphart, including last week’s 7-0 win over Keenan.
Series history: The Midlands teams are meeting for the first time in football.
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AIKEN vs. RICHLAND NE
Site: Harry Parone Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: Aiken is off to a 3-0 start but has yet to face a Class 4A foe. Devontai Pope was the Green Hornets headliner in last week’s 23-3 win over Midland Valley, rushing for 146 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries RNE (3-0) remained unbeaten with a 52-28 triumph against Lower Richland. Darius Paulk ran 17 times for 162 yards and one touchdowns, Chavarius Curry-Felix had an 85-yard kickoff return TD and Miles Thomas tallied on a 45-yard fumble recovery/return Chris Reeder led the hit parade on defense with nine tackles, Ronnie Hopkins had two sacks and Ryan Quarles had two of RNE’s four fumble recoveries.
Series history: The Cavaliers have won five in a row from the Green Hornets and boast an overall 6-1 series lead. The team met three times over the past two season with RNE sweeping region games in 2008-09 and eliminating Aiken from the 4A Division II playoffs in 2008.
BATESBURG-LEESVILLE vs. SALUDA
Site: Bettis Herlong Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Panthers (1-2) got on track last week in a solid 21-0 win over Newberry and former B-L coach Phil Strickland. The game also marked the return to action by veteran quarterback K.J. Johnson, who sat out the first two games Ricky Adams leads the Panthers with 272 rushing yards the B-L defensive leaders are Rivers Bedenbaugh (35 tackles), Antonio Butler (3 sacks) and Gabriel Creech (2 interceptions The former region rival Tigers dropped to 1-2 in the wake of last week’s 16-13 loss to Ninety Six.
Series history: The Panthers own a commanding 47-23-1 lead in the series and have been rather imperious of late – winning 26 of the last 27 outings since 1984.
BLYTHEWOOD vs. NORTHWESTERN
Site: District 3 Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Bengals (1-2) are coming off a bye week after an 18-15 loss to Lexington The host Trojans (3-0) are rolling behind blue-chip quarterback Justin Worley, who is 71-for-110 passing for 873 yards and an eye-opening 14 touchdowns so far. NW doesn’t bother much with the running game. The Trojans have a net of just 141 yards on the ground. The gaudy receiving corps features Robert Joseph (18-126-6), B.J. Boyd (16-189), Brandon Lewis (13-223-2), LaThomas Long (12-50-2) and Stewart Hunt (9-142-3) Moose Wallace’s team had outscored three foes 144-22 Worley burned Ridge View for 288 yards and fove touchdowns in last week 41-2 win over the Blazers.
Series history: Friday marks the first ever meeting of the teams in football.
C.A. JOHNSON vs. BEN LIPPEN
Site: Hathaway-Weeber Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Green Hornets slid back to 2-2 after suffering a 48-34 loss last week at Pelion. Quarterback Jonathan Goodman ran for four touchdowns and threw for another, but CAJ’s defense could not make a 34-28 lead hold up in the fourth quarter Ben Lippen steps out of the independent school realm to face a High School League foe for the first time since it split to SCISA following the 1997 season ... The Falcons are off to a blistering start – winning three games, including two region contests right out of the starting gate Last week, Ben Lippen improved to 2-0 in SCISA Region 1-3A with a 40come-from-nehind 40-34 win over Augusta Christian in Georgia. Running back Taylor Renew was the workhorse – rumbling for 259 yards and three touchdowns on 29 carriers. Quarterback Austin Irish completed 11 of 14 passes for 125 yards and one TD. Versatile Taylor Smith caught 10 passes for 118 yards (one on a 65-yard scoring play), threw a 58-yard TD pass, ran the ball three times for 18 yards, punted, drew punt return duty and had six tackles on defense Zach Perry (12 tackles, 1 sack) and Jimmy Carlen (8 tackles) were the defensive hit leaders.
Series history: The teams are meeting for the first time.
CAMDEN vs. LUGOFF-ELGIN
Site: Lugoff-Elgin Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: Camden (3-0) is coming off a bye week, while L-E fell to 1-2 after dropping a heartbreaking 29-22 overtime decision to Dutch Fork at home last week The Demons forced OT by scoring a last-second touchdown and a two-point conversion, only to come up short in the bonus session Will Dorton hooked up with Darius Custard on a 73-yard scoring pass that concluded with 1 second remaining. Josh Ruiz’s conversion run tied the score at 22-22 L-E finished with 219 yards rushing and 185 yards passing. Custard continued his big-time production with 76 yards rushing and 123 yards receiving.
Series history: Camden used to dominate the Wateree River rivalry, winning 24 of the first 26 meetings with the Demons. L-E, however, is riding a four-game winning streak against the Bulldogs to make things much more interesting.
CARDINAL NEWMAN vs. PINEWOOD PREP
Site: Panther Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Cardinals (0-3) dropped a 42-17 decision last week at Bishop England in the Hibernia Bowl. CN returns to the Lowcountry again this week to face the 1-2 Panthers in the Summerville area The good news was the Cards finially generated some offensive production of note. CN finished with 228 yards rushing. Freshman Conner Desmond ran for 110 yards and one touchdown on six carries, while senior Sterling Moye added 92 yards and one score on 12 totes The host Panthers (1-2) have lost two in a row since opening the season with a win over Northwood Academy.
COLUMBIA vs. BROOKLAND-CAYCE
Site: The Cage. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Capitals (2-1) are coming off a bye week ... Columbia’s offensive leaders are running back DeErik Bradley (68-443-5), quarterback Ky Tyler (21-fr-32, 367 yards, 5 TD passes) and receiver Casey Gladney (12-184-2) ... On defense, Justin Muller leads the team with 28 tackles, McArtha Thompson has three sacks and Dimante Cunningham had two interceptions B-C (0-3) is mired in a 16-game losing streak – matching the program’s longest skid in the modern era (since 1970).
Series history: Columbia has won three of the last four games vs. the Bearcats, but B-C still enjoys an overall 11-8 edge in the series since 1970.
DREHER vs. MID-CAROLINA
Site: Lon Armstrong Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: Dreher dropped to 0-3 in the wake of last week’s 34-20 loss to Eau Claire Mid-Carolina (3-0) rolled over Gilbert last week, 54-0, in its home opener. The Rebels defense has post two straight shutouts and has surrendered just six points to date Depending on the outcome, either M-C will celebrate its first 4-0 start since 1995, or the Blue Devils will be doomed to their first 0-4 start since 1995.
Series history: The Blue Devils and Rebels are meeting for the first time.
EAU CLAIRE vs. LOWER RICHLAND
Site: The Diamond Mine. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Shamrocks defeated Dreher 34-20 last week to even their record at 2-2. EC is off to its best start in 17 years Wayne Henderson had nine carries for 133 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s win over the Blue Devils. Reggie Folk chipped in 71 yards and one TD on 13 carries Carlos Dubois led the way on defense with 12 tackles. The Shamrocks also had four takeaways – an interception by Michael Diggs and fumble recoveries by Austin McCollum, Marquise Jones and Marquinton Richardson LR fell to 0-4 under first-year coach Wayne Farmer after taking a 52-38 hit against Richland NE. The Diamond Hornets had their best offensive game of the season, but LR’s defensive issues (150 points against) are the most pressing concern.
Series history: The series resumes for the first time since 2003. The Diamond Hornets enjoy a whopping 22-1 series lead. The only EC success came in 1986.
HAMMOND vs. ORANGEBURG PREP
Site: Indian Field. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The mighty Skyhawks are off to a 3-0 start and have surrendered only nine points to date Quarterback Dave Nidiffer was 6-for-8 for 222 yards and four touchdowns in last week’s 56-0 non-region win over Florence Christian. Receiver caught two passes – both for touchdowns – for 122 yards Joseph McDougal leads the team with 23 tackles, Weston Verner has 22 stops, 2 TFL and 2 sacks and Jon Allen Babson has 17 tackles and two interceptions.
Series history: Hammond is 6-0 against OP during the Erik Kimrey era, 12-5 overall.IRMO vs. LEXINGTON
Site: WildCat Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: Irmo (3-1) beat Chapin 37-29 for its second win in a row after falling to mighty Goose Creek in Week 2 ... Lexington (3-0) remained unbeaten and the legend of Shaq Roland added yet another stirring chapter in last week’s 56-28 win at Spring Valley Roland was involved in 11 offensive plays, netting five touchdowns and 329 yards. He caught five passes for 177 yards and scoring plays covering 74, 62 and 24 yards. He ran the ball six times for 152 yards, including scoring jaunts of 84 and 35 yards Quarterback Will Hunter was 9-for-19 passing for 248 yards and three TDs In all, the Wildcats rolled up 25 first downs and 518 total offensive yards.
Series history: If, as they say, a rivalry is only a rivalry if both teams have success, then the annual “Battle of the Dam” is not a rivalry. In fact, Irmo has completely dominated the series since 1970 – winning all but nine of the 42 meetings. The Yellow Jackets have won 10 in a row since Lexington’s 50-18 romp in 2000 when a guy named Demetris Summers was the Wildcats star.
KEENAN vs. AIRPORT
Site: Eagle Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Raiders (1-2) have lost two in a row and are struggling offensively – scoring just six points in setbacks against C.A. Johnson and Swansea. Last week, the Raiders fell 7-0 at Swansea. It marked the first time Keenan had been shutout in 45 games dating back to Week 1 of the 2006 season. Airport (2-1) bounced back from a loss to beat Hartsville, 28-21. Quarterback Kelvin Harris was 7-for-11 passing for 186 yards and hooked up with Shay Robinson on a decisive 63-yard scoring pass in the third quarter Offensive linemen Trevor Sandness (87%, 1 pancake, 3 knock-downs) and Alvin Adebule (85%, 2 pancakes, 4 knock-downs) also player well Cavon Howell (10 tackles, 4 TFL, 2 forced fumbles) and Caleb Rivers (10 tackles, 2 TFL, 1 forced fumbles, 1 fumble recovery) were the Eagles defensive headliners.
Series history: The Raiders dropped a 30-0 decision to Airport in their second-ever varsity football game in 1970. Forty years later, the teams finally meet again.
NEWBERRY vs. CHAPIN
Site: Cecil Woolbright Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: The Bulldogs (1-2) are coming off a costly 21-0 loss to Batesburg-Leesville in Phil Strickland’s return to anther Stadium. Newberry managed just 78 rushing yards in the game and lost leading rusher Tyrone Neal to a knee injury The Eagles (1-2) are coming off a 37-29 loss to Irmo.
Series history: Chapin ended an 11-game losing streak in the series with a 17-10 win last season. Newberry’s series advantage now stands at 11-3.
ORANGEBURG-WILKINSON vs. RIDGE VIEW
Site: Blythewood Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: Fast starts against less than stellar competition are normal for O-W. This year, the Bruins stand at 3-1 with wins over 2A Edisto, 1A Allendale-Fairfax and struggling Colleton County. O-W’s lone stumble so far was 49-48 shootout loss to Bamberg-Ehrhardt, another 1A team The Blazers (1-2) are coming off a 41-2 loss to potent Northwestern ... Jonathan Fortune is playing well on defense. The senior linebacker has 30 tackles, 2.5 sacks and two pass break-ups.
Series history: The Bruins will be facing Ridge View for the first time and making its playing debut at Blythewood Stadium.
PELION vs. GILBERT
Site: Tomahawk Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: Pelion (2-2) snapped a two-game losing streak with a wild, 48-34 win over visiting C.A. Johnson in the first-ever meeting of the Midlands teams Jamar Pontoon ran for 139 yards and five touchdowns on 24 carries, OL Chris Jones graded out at 84% and was credited with seven knock-down blocks and Donald Martin led the defense with 12 tackles, one TFL and one fumble recovery The Indians fell to 0-3 after absorbing a 54-0 pounding at the hands of Mid-Carolina last week. Gilbert has been outscored 131-10 so far ... Collins Shirley is the Tribe’s hit leader on defense with 42 tackles, including 3 TFL.
Series history: Gilbert has won four in a row against the neighboring Panthers, and enjoys a commanding 24-8 lead in the series.
SPRING VALLEY vs. LANCASTER
Site: Lancaster Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m..
Game notes: Friday marks the first-ever non-region, regular season meeting of the teams. All previous encounters were either in region play or the state playoffs Spring Valley fell to 1-3 under new coach Miles Aldridge after absorbing a 56-28 home loss to Lexington. The Vikings were outscored 37-0 in the second half Quarterback Austin Hill was 13-for-18 passing for 279 yards and one touchdown in the loss The Bruins enter at 2-1 with both wins coming against Class 2A county rivals Andrew Jackson and Buford Kaderrious Jackson caught a 65 yards scoring pass from Shaq Williams and threw a 56-yard TD pass to Michael Cooper in last week’s 32-0 win against Buford.
Series history: With back-to-back wins in 2008-09, Lancaster has cut the Vikings series lead to 15-12.
WHITE KNOLL vs. DUTCH FORK
Site: DF Stadium. Time: 7:30 p.m.
Game notes: Dutch Fork (2-2) blew an eight-point lead on the last play in regulation at Lugoff-Elgin last week, but the Silver Foxes prevailed 29-22 in overtime on a 10-yard scoring pass from Justin Suber to Jordan Berry ... Suber was 13 for 94 yards and one touchdown by land, and went 12-for-22 for 177 yards and one TD in the passing game. Berry finished with five catches for 78 yards. Brandon Quattlebaum chipped in 77 yards rushing and scored two TDs Suber 781 yards passing and five scoring tosses on the books. He and Quattlebaum have combined for 783 yards rushing, and an average gain of nearly 6.0 yards The unbeaten Timberwolves (3-0) get this first test of the season against a Class 4A foe after scoring easy wins over Gilbert, Pelion and Brookland-Cayce – three teams with a combined record of 2-8 to date WK blitzed winless B-C 41-0 behind a 439-yard rushing attack. Justin Rose was the headliner – finishing with 170 yards and three touchdowns. Lamar Ray (9-105) and Tyrell Grant (8-121-1) also surpassed the 100-yard barrier.
Series history: Dutch Fork won the first five games against the T-Wolves, but White Knoll has cut the series deficit to 6-2 by winning three of the last three outings including last season’s convincing 29-7 triumph.