Week 7 Recap
The 2nd week of region play coupled in with it being 8 weeks into the season have started to take their toll. Injuries are a part of the game, and they tend to add up over the course of a long season. Often they hit at the worst of times, and for a couple of our local teams, they have reared their head in a time where it could mean the difference between making the playoffs and not.
Byrnes 38 Boiling Springs 31 (2 OT)
The Bulldogs suffered what was, at the time, their toughest loss of the season, dropping their region opener to Dorman on a go-ahead TD with just over 20 seconds on the clock after leading for most of the game. The loss ensured that Dorman can finish no worse than 4th and would have a playoff spot while the Bulldogs’ best hope was just to hope for some tie breaker scenario to play out in their favor or get an at-large bid.
Last week against the Cavaliers, Boiling Springs, albeit as banged up as they were, struggled to defend against Dorman’s outside rushing attack down the stretch, while also failing to establish any run game, which forced them to be one-dimensional and play right into Dorman’s strength as a team – their secondary. Ultimately, that doomed them in a 14-10 loss.
This week, the Bulldogs hosted the Byrnes Rebels with a healthy roster save for an injury to receiver Eli Mobley, looking for their first win in the series since 2016. In order to pull off the upset, the Boiling Springs offense was going to have to stay on the field while the defense was going to have to find a way to limit freshman running back Tre Segarra as well as Byrnes’ speedy and talented receiving corps. They did so effectively from the beginning.
Boiling Springs received the opening kickoff and on the first play from scrimmage, Javen Chhim busted up the middle for a 35 yard run to get the Dogs into plus territory. The drive ultimately stalled at the Byrnes 10, but Michael Dueck was able to draw first blood with a 27 yard fieldgoal at the 7:35 mark of the 1st quarter.
Boiling Springs’ defense ended Byrnes’ opening series in a punt, making it look like, in similar fashion to a week ago, that it might be a good night for the Bulldogs. Unfortunately, that momentum changed directions quickly when the ensuing punt went into traffic and bounced off a red jersey for a fumble. Byrnes recovered at the BSHS 42, and got an additional 15 yards on a personal foul after the whistle on the Dogs, setting them up at the 27. Byrnes would go in to take the 7-3 lead on a 1 yard TD run by QB Andrew Stevens with 3:10 to play in the opening stanza.
Boiling Springs jumped back in front with another nice drive early in the 2nd quarter when sophomore tailback Ry’Shaun Morgan took a handoff 4 yards on a draw for a TD to make it 10-7.
The Bulldogs’ defense once again came up with a stop, forcing a punt, but the offense could not muster anything, going 3 and out quickly before once again a big play on special teams swung the game. Byrnes blocked the ensuing punt to set up shop at the BSHS 16 yardline, ultimately leading to a game-tying 19 yard field goal with about 5:00 to play in the half.
Byrnes would go on to jump ahead by a TD right before the half when Andrew Stevens hit Chamarryus Bomar in the near corner of the end zone for a 2 yard TD to make it 17-10 going into the break.
The Rebels got the ball again to start the 2nd half, and once again started with their backs against the wall inside their own 10 after a penalty on the kickoff. It would not matter as Andrew Stevens connected with the hero of the night for the Rebels – Ethan Morris – in the flat. He broke a tackle and went untouched 90 yards down the sideline to make it a 2 score game.
Boiling Springs managed to rally all the way back from there using a combination of strong defense and some big plays by QB Lincoln Huskey. They pulled back within a score on a nice 6 yard TD connection from Huskey to Dekari Sterling off play action. Following a huge sack of Andrew Stevens on 4th and long by Campbell Johnson, they struck again on a drive Huskey kept alive with a huge run on 4th and 11. He later tied the game at 24 with a 16 yard run with 6:03 to play.
Naturally, the 2 defenses traded blows down the stretch, and this game went to not one, but 2 overtimes.
In the first extra period, the Bulldogs struck first on a 4 yard TD rush by Javen Chhim to go up 31-24. It took Byrnes 2 plays to answer as Stevens found Ethan Morris on a slant in the back of the endzone.
The Rebels took the lead quickly in the 2nd overtime period via a 9 yard pass to Ethan Morris in the flat, who got to the edge and got the pylon to make it 38-31.
Ultimately, this game came down to a 4th down play. On 4th and 10 from the 10, Lincoln Huskey rolled to his right and tried to throw a fade to the endzone, but it was well-covered by 2 Byrnes defenders. The pass fell incomplete, sealing the win for Byrnes.
Huskey finished the night 9 for 21 with 133 yards and a TD while rushing for 76 and a TD. Javen Chhim logged 76 yards and a TD on 16 attempts while Ry’Shaun Morgan added 14 yards with a TD on 8 touches. Kyle Patterson led the receiving attack with 2 snags for 55 yards.
Andrew Stevens put up big numbers thanks to a couple of big plays. He was 23 for 30 with 273 yards and 3 touchdowns along with a rushing TD. Ethan Morris hauled in 7 passes for 128 yards and 3 TDs. Tre Segarra was limited to just 58 yards on 14 carries, making for the first game this season he has not had a TD.
Boiling Springs goes on the road next week for a battle with the region-leading Gaffney Indians while the Rebels take on Dorman in Roebuck.
Gaffney 19 Spartanburg 14
The one thing that has been a constant for Spartanburg this season has been poor offensive line play and inability to hang more than about 14 points per game. That certainly did not change on Friday night at home against the Indians.
There was some shuffling of personnel on the right side of the line this week that was not at all a help to the Vikes. Gaffney was able to get into the backfield with relative ease all night long, which was only made worse for Spartanburg when QB TJ Johnson went down in the 2nd quarter with an apparent ankle injury.
The Vikings’ defense was still as strong as they have been all season long, managing to stuff Gaffney on back to back plays from inside the 1 yardline with no gain.
Unfortunately, after that huge stop, they gave it right back to Riley Staton and the Indians via an interception that allowed Gaffney to claim a 19-14 lead with 11:16 to play. They ultimately came up short on the 2 point conversion attempt, but held the advantage the rest of the way.
Spartanburg is on a bye next week that comes at a good time while Gaffney will host Boiling Springs.
Elsewhere in 5A, the Dorman Cavaliers picked up their 2nd straight win, wrapping up non-region with a narrow 26-12 victory over Mauldin on the road. This game was ugly on the offensive side of the ball, being tied at 6 at the half before Dorman used some big plays down the stretch to pull away. The Cavaliers will get back to action at home next week vs Byrnes.
Greer 28 Eastside 14
The Greer Yellow Jackets remained perfect in region 2-4A play and gained some cushion with their lead in the standings Friday night thanks to a big night from LaDainnian Martin (death, taxes, and….) as well as a Riverside loss to Laurens.
Martin ran the ball for a whopping 216 yards on 13 rushes with a pair of touchdowns. Chris Hall added a TD as well as 49 yards on 9 carries. Hall also had a passing TD to his line, going 7 of 17 for 104 yards with 2 interceptions. Chase Byrd hauled in the lone receiving TD, leading the way with 94 yards on 5 catches.
The Jackets are off next week before resuming on the road at Wade Hampton on the 20th.
Broome 41 Blue Ridge 21
Stop me if you’ve heard this before.. Broome put up over 400 yards of total offense and that is largely due to Jaylen McGill and Kamajay Brackett-Brannon.
One cannot ignore the honest and obvious truth here. Blue Ridge is awful. But, still, even against an awful team, you have to execute. The Centurions did that well en route to 448 yards of total offense.
McGill tallied 158 yards on 18 carries with a TD. KBB ran the ball 10 times for 103 yards with a pair of TDs. He also slung the ball around well, going 16-20 with 164 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Greyson Bradley had both TD receptions, all a part of an 80 yard night with 7 catches.
The Centurions get their bye this coming week before resuming region play on the 20th with the Carolina Trojans. Of course, the region championship showdown is the following week against the Chapman Panthers, who were off on Friday night.
Elsewhere in the 3A ranks, Woodruff pulled off a narrow 36-35 win on the road at Emerald for their first region win under Brett Sloan. The Wolverines uncharacteristically almost totally one dimensional, accumulating 336 passing yards compared to just 77 rushing. They averaged just over 6 yards per play, which is a big positive despite the fact they were playing an Emerald team that is struggling this year. QB TJ Morris was 31-39 with 4 touchdowns, with his blemish being a pair of interceptions.Hunter West hauled in 3 of their 4 TD receptions, but it was Kory Scott that led the way with 15 snags for 119 yards with a touchdown. Woodruff will look to use the momentum and confidence they gained next week, and they will need it in a big way as they take on Clinton at Willie Varner Stadium.
Union County suffered their ugliest defeat of the year at the hands of the Chester Cyclones, falling 60-0. Fortunately, Union has their bye next week, which may serve as a good chance to rest and re-focus a little as they try and get a region win the following week at home against Emerald.
Ninety Six 42 Landrum 14
Landrum and Chesnee both played 2 games in a week. If you’re the Landrum cardinals, things have taken a dramatic swing. The injury bug has hit the Cardinals. Marc Baker, one of the team’s leaders on defense, suffered a non-football related ankle injury prior to the Chesnee game. He did not play, and was on crutches in the Cardinals’ 40-21 loss on Monday night. The Cards and Eagles both had quick turnarounds with 2 games in a week, which is even harder on Landrum since they had their bye back on week zero, meaning they’d have to play 10 straight weeks.
After going down 7-0 early on a controversial TD pass, Landrum was able to answer courtesy of a Colton Link 2 yard touchdown rush. He linked up with the endzone again after the defense forced a 3 and out on a 79 yard scamper to give the Cards a 14-7 lead. That would be the last points they’d muster, but they carried the lead to the half.
Ninety Six scored the next 35 unanswered to win it.
Landrum now faces a predicament with Abbeville coming to town next week and only 2 region games remaining after that. Could the Cards miss the playoffs after getting off to such a strong start? It is a very real possibility if they don’t beat either Blacksburg or Liberty in the last 2 weeks.
Chesnee ended the week 1-1 as Abbeville defeated them 56-14. The Eagles could not establish any balance on offense, with no rusher over 20 yards and no TDs on the ground. Kjay Proctor went 14 for 26 with 2 touchdowns and also threw a pair of interceptions. Adonis Burgess hauled in 4 passes for 72 yards to lead the way while Kaylob and Kayleb (Blanton and Swaney) had a TD reception each with a combined 106 yards on 9 combined receptions.
Chesnee hosts the Blacksburg Wildcats next week.