4A/5A Round 1 Preview
Nation Ford (4-6) at Spartanburg (6-4)
The Vikings locked up the 2 seed last Friday with a thrilling 42-41 win over Dorman. Freshman running back Keke Kelly was outstanding in the win for Spartanburg, finishing with over 150 total yards in the win. The Vikings will open the playoffs at home against Nation Ford, who is the number three seed Region 3.
Spartanburg has been very balanced on offense late in the year, and have had success both on the ground and through the air. With a pair of talented running backs, as well as a Shrine Bowl quarterback and receiver, I expect to see more of the same from the Vikings this Friday. I think Spartanburg’s offense will move the ball very effectively against the Falcons and will come away with a two-score win to advance to round 2.
Dorman (8-2) at Clover (6-4)
Dorman will look to shake off last week’s loss as they will head to Clover for the second time this season. The Cavs came away with a 37-23 win the first time these teams squared off this year, and the Cavs will hope to repeat the outcome. Clover receiver Dion Brown was sensational in the first meeting, and Dorman will look to contain him much better this time around.
The Cavaliers have been hit by some injuries, but if the offensive line plays as well as they did last week, they should be able to run the ball well enough to come away with a road win in round one. I think Dorman will try to dominate time of possession to keep Clover’s explosive receivers on the sidelines as much as possible. If Dorman pulls off the win, they will most likely have a showdown with Dutch Fork in round 2.
Byrnes (7-3) at Hillcrest (9-1)
Byrnes heads into the playoffs coming off of an impressive win over Gaffney in the final game of the regular season. They are the four seed from Region 2 and will open the playoffs on the road at Hillcrest. The Rams have been dominant all year, winning games by an average of 42-13, and their only blemish is a one point loss at T.L. Hanna.
The Rebels seemed to find themselves last week and played arguably their most complete game of the season. This should be one of the best first round games in the state and if Byrnes can come out hot like they did last week, I like their chances of pulling off the upset. I think Kyai Cook has a big night and the Rebels come away with a close win on the road to advance.
Rock Hill (2-8) at Gaffney (6-3)
Gaffney will look to bounce back from a loss last week as they host the Bearcats in the opening round of the 5A playoffs. Quarterback Grayson Loftis will look to spread the ball around to the Indians’ playmakers, and the defense shouldn’t have a problem slowing down Rock Hill. Gaffney set themselves up with an easier playoff road by winning the region title, and they should cruise into round 2 with a big win.
South Pointe (7-3) at Greer (4-6)
Greer finished the regular season hot and finished in a three way tie for first in the region. After the tie-breaker the Yellow Jackets received the number two seed and a home playoff game. Unfortunately they draw one of the better teams in all of 4A in South Pointe. Greer will need to continue to run the football with LaDanian Martin who had 272 yards on the ground last week, and try to dominate time of possession to keep the Stallions electric playmakers on the sidelines.
This game could very well be a low scoring game, as South Pointe boasts a very talented defense that has held teams to an average of just 18 points per game. If Greer can take care of the football and ride Martin for four quarters, they have a great chance to knock off South Pointe for the second time in four years.