DUTCH FORK 59, SOUTH AIKEN 28
Dutch Fork running back Matt Colburn returned after suffering an injury in the Silver Foxes loss to Goose Creek and rushed for 83 yards and three touchdowns to his squad to a 59-28 win over South Aiken Friday.
“Our offense made some strides, moved the ball well and put some points on the board. The problem was we couldn’t get a stop,” Thoroughbreds head coach Jeremy West said after his team’s sixth consecutive loss that knocked them to 1-6 on the season and 0-1 in Region 5-AAAA. “We’ve got to get better on defense. We did pretty good against the run but were vulnerable in the passing game.”
That was apparent as Dutch Fork quarterback Derek Olenchuk completed 19 of 22 passes for 296 yards and three scores for the Silver Foxes, who rushed out to a 38-14 halftime lead. The win snapped what was a two-game skid for Dutch Fork (5-2, 1-0), following losses to Goose Creek and Irmo before the region opener.
South Aiken’s Bo Baldwin completed eight passes for 117 yards, but threw two interceptions and was sacked five times. Damian Brown led the Thoroughbreds’ rushing attack with 101 yards and a touchdown.
Baldwin added two rushing touchdowns while Matt Albertson had one carry for 69 yards and another score.
“We competed well and the kids didn’t give up,” West said. “I’m proud of the effort, I’m just not pleased with the issues we had.”
Next Friday, South Aiken will travel to face Lexington which is coming off a surprising win over North Augusta that has the region standings shaken up after just one week.
“It looks like it’s wide open,” West said. “Our goal is to make the playoffs and that’s still attainable, but we play a very good Lexington team.”
WHITE KNOLL 35, AIKEN 20
Aiken (1-6, 0-1 Region 5-AAAA) scored three times in the second half, but it wasn’t enough to overcome a 35-point hole as the Hornets fell 35-20 on the road at White Knoll (6-1, 1-0).
After his team “waddled through” the first half, head coach Brian Neal said his team did a good job of re-grouping at the break.
“We made some adjustments on defense and some adjustments on attitude and just played better, really,” he said.
That resulted in a pair of rushing touchdowns for Terrell Lewis, one of them set up by a long interception return by Devantae Gaiters that game the Hornets the ball in the Timberwolves’ red zone. The third score of the night for Aiken came on a 35-yard fumble recovery and return by Tremaine Gaffney.
Up next for the Hornets is Dutch Fork, a state finalist a year ago that opened its region slate by putting up a big number on South Aiken.
“Our kids responded well at halftime, and it’s going to be another big game for us,” Neal said. “We’ve just got to find a way to put it all together. ... We’ll get back in Monday, get at it and try to pull an upset.”
RSM 49, BLACKVILLE-HILDA 12
Ridge Spring-Monetta won it’s first Region 4-A game of the season, but it came with a steep price.
Starting quarterback Reggie Preston suffered a significant knee injury after making a pass midway through the second quarter and didn’t return to the game, a 49-12 win over Blackville-Hilda.
“It’s a good one for us. Anytime you pick up a region win it’s big, especially after an 0-2 start,” Trojans head coach Heath Corley said of his team.
Preston competed 1 of 2 passes before getting hurt, but it was a big one – a 55-yard touchdown pass. After his injury, he was replaced by Samuel Bedenbaugh.
Corley said Bedenbaugh has played quarterback in the past and still gets reps in practice. It showed as he went 3-for-4 for 79 yards and a touchdown of his own. Rafael Leaphart was one the receiving end of most of the passes, making three catches for 119 yards and a touchdown.
Corley said his team was a little in shock after Preston – a team leader and elite player – was injured. The Trojans held a narrow 14-12 lead at the half before the coaches could get them refocused. They held on and fed the ball to Travious Wigfall, who had a monster night with 18 carries for 229 yards and four touchdowns.
“I’m proud of the kids, the defense especially,” Corley said.
Ridge Spring-Monetta faces a huge challenge next week when it travels for a game against Williston-Elko, the region’s first-place team that looks to be on the verge of clinching another title.
FOX CREEK 52, NORTH 18
Fox Creek (5-2, 2-1 Region 4-A) was without one of its top rushers, but it didn’t matter much in a 52-18 road win over North (2-5, 0-4).
Sizeable fullback Ikel El was out with a knee issue, but KJ Green stepped in with around 60 yards as the starting fullback.
Head coach Russ Schneider said the team is unclear whether El will be able to go in next week’s game, so it was nice to see that Green can be a productive substitute.
“It was good,” he said. “He did a great job in there filling in for us.”
Green was far from the most productive Predator, though. That honor goes to Jaquan Williams, who had only four carries but racked up 222 rushing yards and three touchdowns while also picking off a pass. Dalton Swires also found the end zone three times, twice on runs of 25 and 10 yards and once on a 75-yard interception return.
Deondré Baskett also added a 25-yard touchdown run.
“It just feels good to get going again,” Schneider said of the bounceback win following a 27-7 loss to Williston-Elko in Week Six.
The Predators will return home to host Wagener-Salley next Friday.
WARDLAW 80, CATHEDRAL 20
Wardlaw (7-0) stayed unbeaten with the lopsided win in Charleston.
Malik Lee didn’t need many carries, rushing six times for 280 yards and five touchdowns. Holton Manly rushing three times for 44 yards and a score, and he also returned an interception for a touchdown. Daylen Morris had four carries for 59 yards, while Rycharde Coates had five touches for 55 yards and intercepted a pass.
The Patriots’ passing game was also solid in the victory, with Ed Williams completing a pair of passes for 91 yards, both touchdowns. In all, Wardlaw outgained its host 617-198.
The Patriots will next host Richard Winn next Friday.