Lou Bezjak

Week 5 high school football picks, previews and top games

Lexington quarterback Chase Crouch (7) and the Wildcats look to snap a two-game losing streak Friday against Irmo.
Lexington quarterback Chase Crouch (7) and the Wildcats look to snap a two-game losing streak Friday against Irmo. jblake@thestate.com

Looking at this week’s top high school football games in the Midlands and picking winners.

Brookland-Cayce (2-2) at Gray Collegiate (3-1)

Players to Watch – BC: RB Rasheed Taylor, LB Raahzheik Mays ; GC: QB Hunter Helms, WR Chylon Thomas

Notes: First of three games to be held at Spirit Communications Park this year. … Gray Collegiate is looking for its first four-game winning streak in school history. … Gray’s Duncan Rivers leads Midlands with 75 tackles. …. B-C quarterback Malachi Brown had 283 yards of offense and two touchdowns last week against Chapin in place of injured starter Reed Charpia.

Pick: Brookland-Cayce

Dutch Fork (2-1) at Westwood (3-1)

TV/Internet: WACH Fox (57.2/1250 TWC)/www.wach.com

Players to Watch – DF: LB Alex Smith, QB Graeson Underwood; W: QB Elijah Heatley, LB Brice Harkness

Notes: Dutch Fork leads series, 3-0, including 47-14 last year. … Dutch Fork is averaging 41.7 points a game. … Westwood defense has 16 sacks. … Redhawks have three receivers (Cortes Braham, Christian Horn, Montre Miller) with more than 200 receiving yards.

Pick: Dutch Fork

Gilbert (4-0) at Dreher (3-1)

Players to Watch – G: QB Josh Strickland, WR Gage Sease; D: RB/LB Jay Washington

Notes: Dreher leads series, 2-1 but Indians won last year, 56-27. … Gilbert is averaging 502 yards of offense per game. … Gilbert quarterback Josh Strickland has completed 75 percent of his passes for 711 yards. … Dreher’s Jay Washington leads team in rushing, touchdowns, tackles for loss, pass break-ups.

Pick: Gilbert

Hammond (4-0) at Cardinal Newman (2-3)

Players to Watch – H: QB Corbett Glick, DE Jordan Burch; CN: WR Patrick Reedy, QB T.J. Wise

Notes: Hammond is averaging 41.3 points a game. … Skyhawks receiver Lucas Prickett has 23 catches for 304 yards and five touchdowns after missing season opener. … CN receiver Patrick Reedy is a yard shy of 500 yards receiving for season. … Cardinals quarterback T.J. Wise has 1,138 yards of offense and 11 TDs this year.

Pick: Hammond

Lexington (3-2) at Irmo (4-1)

Players to Watch – L: QB Chase Crouch, LB Logan Cripe I: QB John Ragin, DE Trajan Jeffcoat

Notes: Irmo has won 13 of last 17 in series but Lexington has won last two, including 33-21 last year. Four of last five games have been decided by 10 points or less. … Raekwon Heath leads Yellow Jackets with six TD catches. … Lexington has three players with at last three sacks – Logan Cripe, Alston Stewart and Jaylen McCoy.

Pick: Irmo

White Knoll (3-1) at Spring Valley (5-0)

Players to Watch – WK: QB Aveon Smith, LB Timothy Jamison SV: LB Channing Tindall, QB Quincy Hill

Notes: White Knoll has won three straight in series, including 38-7 last year. … WK is converting 51 percent on its third-down attempts this season. … Both teams are averaging more than 400 yards per game on offense with 316 of SV’s yards coming on ground. … Jaylon Morris leads Vikings with six touchdowns.

Pick: Spring Valley

Other picks

(Picks in bold face caps)


ABBEVILLE at Mid-Carolina

BEN LIPPEN at Pinewood Prep

BLYTHEWOOD at River Bluff


COLUMBIA at Pelion

Lancaster at LUGOFF-ELGIN

LEWISVILLE at C.A. Johnson

Ninety-Six at SALUDA

NORTH CENTRAL at Great Falls

PORTER-GAUD at Heathwood Hall



Last Week: 16-8

Season: 83-29