With just thirty-three days til the kick off of the 2018 football season, here is a look at the top five games in the Class 5A competition. These games are listed in order by date of game.
GREENWOOD AT GAFFNEY (8-24-18) The Greenwood Eagles have a lot of talent on their football team this year, maybe the best since Dan Pippen has been there. They want to be considered the team to beat for the Region I and want to be a deep threat in the Class 5A playoffs. This is their opportunity, early, to get the respect that they want. This Gaffney team is loaded but their questionmark, as always, is can they play up to the level of their talent. If they do, it could be a
long night for the Eagles. But if they don’t, look for Greenwood to be the team leaving with the bragging rights.
NORTHWESTERN AT DORMAN (8-31-18) The Dorman Cavaliers are loaded for the 2018 season and their only question mark, which was at quarterback, seems to have been answered in the off-season. This team enters the season a the No. 2 team in the state behind only Dutch Fork, who defeated the Cavaliers in a great title game in 2017. They will host the NO. 3 Northwestern Trojans early and this Trojan team is also loaded with one of the top quarterbacks in the state in Justin Noller. While Dorman has a balanced attack offense, they do have a deep talent pool at the wide receiver position inlcuding 6-3 Jacoby Pinkney, who has committed to Virginia Tech. I look for this game to be a great measuring stick for each of these teams early in the season.
FORT DORCHESTER AT BERKELEY (9-14-18) This game is going to tell us who the strongest team in the low country is and who may have the best shot at competing with Dutch Fork in the lower state. Fort Dorchester has a lot o returning talent but lets not pretent that losing quarterback Dekereon Joyner to graduation isn’t going to impact them tremendously. Their new signal caller is a strong runner and play maker but he does not have the arm that Joyner and is not the big-play-every-play type of player Joyner was at this point. Berkeley quarterback Eric Tuttle leads a loaded Stag team in their first year in Class 5A and all eyes are on the Stags to see if they can be “the team” to beat in the low country. I believe the winner of this game will be the 2nd best team in the lower state behind Dutch Fork.
T.L. HANNA AT WESTSIDE (9-21-18) What a great match up that will be a great measuring stick for each of these teams and, quite honestly, probably produce the Region I winner. The Yellow Jackets are going to be strong up front with experience at quarterback and very strong up front on defense. The Westside Rams have looked better than anticipated in the off-season and if they can continue to play well in their offense, this game is going to be what we believe it will be – one of the top three match ups in the state. While I don’t put a lot of stock in 7 on 7 play in the off-season, Westside has demonstrated that they may have answered the questions on their offense that we had back in the Spring.
DORMAN AT GAFFNEY (10-5-18) By the time the Cavs get to this game, they will have played Northwestern, York, Hillcrest, Boiling Springs and Spartanburg. So they will be battle tested. Gaffney enters the season at the No. 9 team in the 5A polls. Don’t get me wrong, they are as talented as any of the teams in the top five easily; but in the past few years they have underachieved and played well below their talent level. The Indians return a wealth of talent on both sides of the football aned their quarterback has looked very strong in the off-season workouts and 7 on 7 competitions. They will have played some tough games coming into this game but this is the game that will tell us just how good the Indians are in 2018. They will either be contenders or pretenders.
|2018 PRESEASON TOP TWENTY POLL CLASS 5A|
|1||DUTCH FORK SILVER FOXES|
|4||FORT DORCHESTER PATRIOTS|
|6||T.L. HANNA YELLOW JACKETS|
|11||BOILING SPRINGS BULLDOGS|
|14||SPRING VALLEY VIKINGS|
|19||ASHLEY RIDGE SWAMP FOXES|
|20||CAROLINA FOREST PANTHERS|