There's a new No. 1 in Class A football.
Wagener-Salley took over the top spot in the latest S.C. Prep Football Media Poll, released Tuesday, after spending the previous five weeks in the No. 2 spot.
The War Eagles (6-0, 3-0 Region 3-A) received seven first-place votes and overtook Lamar, which received two first-place votes and fell to No. 3 following a 28-26 loss to Gray Collegiate, the ninth-ranked team in Class AA. Defending state champion Green Sea Floyds received the other two first-place votes and is now ranked second.
Wagener-Salley, a 54-16 winner over Williston-Elko on Friday, has outscored its opponents 319-50 while winning six consecutive games to open the season. The War Eagles were ranked No. 1 throughout much of the first half of the 1995 season, which they also started 6-0.
Blackville-Hilda (4-2, 2-1) moved up from seventh to fifth following a 38-12 win over Hunter-Kinard-Tyler. The Hawks have another big region game at home this week against eighth-ranked Ridge Spring-Monetta. The Trojans (4-2, 3-0) are tied with Wagener-Salley for the top spot in the league after Friday's 30-20 win over Denmark-Olar.
The top of the Class AA poll is the same as it has been all year long. Barnwell remains in second place with one first-place vote behind defending state champion Abbeville, which hosts Fox Creek this week. The Warhorses (7-0, 1-0 Region 5-AA) cruised past Allendale-Fairfax in their region opener and visit Whale Branch, which is in a three-way tie for No. 10, this Friday. This is the first of three consecutive games for Barnwell against currently ranked teams to close out the regular season – after Whale Branch is Woodland, which is also tied for 10th, and then Bamberg-Ehrhardt, which dropped from third to sixth following a 35-28 loss to Wade Hampton.
Strom Thurmond continues to win but isn't gaining any ground in the Class AAA poll. The Rebels (6-1, 1-0 Region 5-AAA) have won six consecutive games coming into Friday's Aiken Standard Game of the Week against Swansea, but they dropped from eighth to ninth despite a 34-0 win over Edisto. Dillon received seven first-place votes and is No. 1 for the fifth consecutive week. Second-ranked Chapman picked up the other four first-place votes, followed by Camden, Chester and May River.
Myrtle Beach is still the unanimous No. 1 in Class AAAA, as it has been since the preseason. Daniel, South Pointe, North Myrtle Beach and Wilson round out the top five. Losses by Walhalla, Hartsville and Travelers Rest resulted in a reshuffling of the bottom half of the poll, with Wren moving up from ninth to seventh and Eastside, Belton-Honea Path and Greenville rounding out the top 10.
The top spot in Class AAAAA still belongs to Dutch Fork, which like Myrtle Beach has been the unanimous No. 1 all season. Byrnes, Fort Dorchester, Dorman and Sumter round out the top five for the second consecutive week.