High School Football

5 top Midlands high school football storylines — and our Week 10 predictions

A fired-up Airport team hits the field to face Brookland-Cayce

Airport High football played against rival Brookland-Cayce on Friday night.
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Airport High football played against rival Brookland-Cayce on Friday night.

Here are five things to keep an eye on this week in Midlands high school football:

Weather alters schedule again

With the threat of inclement weather for Friday, more than half of the games scheduled in the Midlands have been moved up to Thursday.

District rivals Airport and Brookland-Cayce will meet Sunday with the Region 5-4A title on the line.

Region titles at stake

Airport at Brookland-Cayce will be one of four games that will determine region titles.

Sumter at Irmo will determine the Region 4-5A championship. If Sumter wins, it is the champion outright. If Irmo wins and Blythewood loses to Spring Valley, the Yellow Jackets are region champs.

If Irmo wins and Blythewood wins, there will be a three-way tie. The tiebreaker is a coin flip among the three teams, then head-to-head result of the two winners of the coin toss.

Richland One rivals AC Flora and Dreher will determine the Region 4-4A crown. A.C. Flora wins the championship with a win. If Dreher wins and Lower Richland loses to Orangeburg-Wilkinson, the Blue Devils are champs.

If Dreher and Lower Richland both win, there will be a three-way tie with defensive points allowed between the three teams as the tiebreaker.

AC Flora coach Collin Drafts, players Quincy Riley and Dewey Greene discuss going from no wins last year to competing for region title this year.

North Central tries to end title drought

The fourth game to decide a region title will be North Central’s matchup at Buford to decide the Region 4-2A crown. Both teams are unbeaten in region play.

North Central has been one of the biggest surprises this year and hasn’t won a region title since 1992. The Knights’ seven wins are the most since 1998. North Central had eight wins combined in the previous three seasons.

Lexington-River Bluff rivalry

Lexington and River Bluff is one of the area’s top rivalries no matter which sport is going on, but there will plenty at stake for Thursday’s matchup.

The winner of the game finishes second in Region 5-5A and hosts a first-round playoff game. River Bluff has never hosted a home playoff game and is a win away from tying the school record for wins in a season set in 2014.

Lexington has won all four games in the series with the last two by 10 points or more.

Lexington defeats rival River Bluff 41-19 on Friday.

Hammond, Dutch Fork look to stay perfect

Dutch Fork and Hammond will try to cap off perfect regular seasons this week.

The Silver Foxes (7-0) play White Knoll on Thursday in their regular-season finale. Dutch Fork was scheduled to play Blythewood next week as a makeup game but it won’t be played. Dutch Fork coach Tom Knotts said he is trying to schedule a game for next week.

Hammond will go for its sixth unbeaten regular season when it travels to Heathwood Hall. The Skyhawks (9-0) have clinched the top seed for the SCISA 3A playoffs, which begin next week.

Dutch Fork quarterback Ty Olenchuk threw four touchdown passes in the 70-7 win over Chapin on Friday, Sept. 28, 2018.

Midlands Top 10 Poll

1. Dutch Fork (7-0)

2. Hammond (9-0)

3. River Bluff (7-1)

4. Blythewood (6-2)

5. A.C. Flora (6-2)

6. Irmo (5-3)

7. Brookland-Cayce (6-3)

8. Airport (6-3)

9. Lexington (5-3)

10. Ridge View (5-3)

This Week’s Picks

Thursday

Cardinal Newman at Ben Lippen

Bezjak: Cardinal Newman

Dearing: Cardinal Newman

Eau Claire at Columbia (Keenan Stadium)

Bezjak: Columbia

Dearing: Columbia

Fairfield Central at Indian Land

Bezjak: Indian Land

Dearing: Fairfield Central

Gilbert at Pelion

Bezjak: Gilbert

Dearing: Gilbert

Hammond at Heathwood Hall

Bezjak: Hammond

Dearing: Hammond

Keenan at Camden

Bezjak: Camden

Dearing: Camden

Lancaster at Ridge View

Bezjak: Ridge View

Dearing: Ridge View

Lower Richland at Orangeburg-Wilkinson

Bezjak: Lower Richland

Dearing: Lower Richland

Newberry at Mid-Carolina

Bezjak: Newberry

Dearing: Newberry

North Central at Buford

Bezjak: North Central

Dearing: North Central

Richland Northeast at Westwood

Bezjak: Westwood

Dearing: Westwood

River Bluff at Lexington

Bezjak: River Bluff

Dearing: Lexington

Saluda at Batesburg-Leesville

Bezjak: Saluda

Dearing: Saluda

Spartanburg Christian at Northside Christian

Bezjak: Spartanburg Christian

Dearing: Spartanburg Christian

Sumter at Irmo

Bezjak: Irmo

Dearing: Sumter

Wardlaw at Richard Winn

Bezjak: Wardlaw

Dearing: Wardlaw

White Knoll at Dutch Fork

Bezjak: Dutch Fork

Dearing: Dutch Fork

Friday

Blythewood at Spring Valley

Bezjak: Blythewood

Dearing: Blythewood

Dreher at AC Flora (Memorial Stadium)

Bezjak: AC Flora

Dearing: AC Flora

Gray Collegiate at CA Johnson (Keenan Stadium)

Bezjak: Gray Collegiate

Dearing: Gray Collegiate

Nation Ford at Chapin

Bezjak: Nation Ford

Dearing: Nation Ford

Swansea at Edisto

Bezjak: Swansea

Dearing: Swansea

WW King at Clarendon Hall

Bezjak: Clarendon Hall

Dearing: Clarendon Hall

Sunday

Airport at Brookland-Cayce

Bezjak: Brookland-Cayce

Dearing: Brookland-Cayce

This season’s records

Bezjak: 178-49

Dearing: 171-56

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