STROM THURMOND 35, DARLINGTON 6

JOHNSTON — The second quarter was party time for Strom Thurmond High School’s football fans Friday evening, as the Rebels racked up 28 points en route to a 35-6 romp over Darlington in the first round of the Class AAA playoffs.


The Rebels (10-1), playing at home, got their big data by way of the ground game, as Jauveer Hammond ran for 97 yards (in addition to passing for 67) and Chad Gilchrist ran for 96, helping set the stage for the Rebels’ next challenge: a second-round contest at home against North Myrtle Beach, which beat Orangeburg-Wilkinson to the tune of 52-35 to advance. The Falcons ended their season at 6-5.


Lee Sawyer, the Rebels’ coach, described himself as “very pleased” with his crew’s overall showing. “We ran the ball effectively, like we planned to, coming into the game. I thought our defense did an excellent job ... Our young guys gave up one there at the end, but overall, I’m real pleased with our performance tonight.”


Sawyer’s squad racked up three touchdowns by ground, one by air and one by a major Falcon gaffe. The visitors, one minute after the Rebels’ initial touchdown, were backed up and looking to punt from their own 5-yard line.


The snap, however, went high, almost sailing over punter Kelvin Jackson’s head, and the chase was on, a step or two from the goal line. Lyndon Lowery scooped up the offering and banked the Rebels’ second touchdown.


Hammond described the evening as “business as usual,” and added, “Right now, all I can say about my team is, we’re hungry.”


Sawyer put his reserves into action for much of the second half. Referring to his troops, he said, “All the guys, I thought they came ready to play. They didn’t assume it was going to be easy, (with the opposition) being a fourth seed.”


The Rebels’ next opponent, the Chiefs, are now 9-2, following their win over Orangeburg-Wilkinson (also 9-2).


D 0 0 0 6 — 6


ST 0 28 0 7 — 35


SCORING SUMMARY


Second Quarter


ST – Gilchrist 1 run (Cole Fell kick) 11:42.


ST – Lowery 1 fumble recovery (Fell kick) 10:35.


ST – Trevonte Watkins 3 run (Fell kick) 6:18.


ST – Hammond 28 pass to Tyree Stidem (Fell kick) 2:13.


Fourth Quarter


ST – Delonta Bates 2 run (Fell kick) 8:12.


D — Shakeem Thomas 1 run (pass failed) 6:08.


INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS


RUSHING


D —Trayvon Thomas 13-45, S. Thomas 11-19-1TD, Melvin Smith 2-0. Totals 26-64-1TD.


ST — Chad Gilchrist 15-96-1TD, Hammond 13-97, Delonta Bates 6-16-1TD, Trevonta Watkins 6-31-1TD, Deion Chinn 3-13, Deandre Ryan 1-10, Tyree Stidem 5-30. Totals 49-293-3TD.


PASSING


ST–Hammond 7-11-67-1 TD.


D – S. Thomas 11-27-160- 2 INTs.


RECEIVING


ST–Stidem 4-31, Kendall Hill 4-72, Ryan 2-21-1TD.


D – Tra’Quan DuBose 7-147, Smith 2-18, Brandon Dowdy 2-20.


INTERCEPTIONS


ST – Kenyatta Dunbar 1-30, Terrance Grim 1-0.