3 things that jumped out from Aug. 24, 2018 high school football
Tri-County Coaches Association players of the week (from Week 1)
Offensive player of the week: Narii Gaither, Rock Hill - senior running back carried the ball 32 times against South Pointe, racking up 188 yards and two touchdowns, while playing offense and defense.
Defensive player: Steven Neese, Fort Mill - Neese piled up 19 tackles against Chester, including nine solo jobs. He also recovered a fumble for the Yellow Jackets.
Offensive lineman: Carson Murray, Rock Hill - the Bearcats’ junior center graded 91 percent with three knockdowns during his team’s win over South Pointe.
Defensive lineman: Ashten Schaufert, Nation Ford - the senior defensive lineman was a nuisance against Conway, making 10 tackles, including three for a loss, and recording four quarterback hurries and three QB knockdowns.
Special teams: Dewuan McCullum, Nation Ford - senior amassed 129 total yards on four kick returns against Conway.
1A, 2A, 3A, 4A schools
Offensive player of the week: Pha’Leak Brown, Chester - senior running back produced a game-winning performance against Fort Mill, rushing for 211 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries.
Defensive player: Tahj Knight, Indian Land - Knight made nine tackles, with three for a loss and two quarterback hurries, during the Warriors’ win over Buford.
Offensive lineman: Wyatt Tunall, Chester - senior committed to Appalachian State graded 86 percent with five knockdown blocks, while helping the Cyclones rush for close to 450 yards against Fort Mill.
Defensive lineman: Martez Moore, Lewisville - Moore notched 12 tackles, including nine solo efforts and two for a loss, against C.A. Johnson. Moore also forced and recovered a fumble.
Special teams: Avery Funderburk, Andrew Jackson - Funderburk made a 43-yard field goal, hit 4-of-5 extra points and had two touchbacks on kickoffs for the Vols last Friday.
State rankings - South Pointe drops
South Pointe dipped out of the top spot in the 4A high school football state rankings for the first time in over a year, following the Stallions’ loss to Rock Hill High last Friday night. The Bearcats got a vote in the 5A poll, while Clover received four.
Chester hosts Rock Hill High Friday. The Cyclones remain at No. 3 in the 3A classification, while Great Falls also picked up a vote in the 1A ranking.
1. Dutch Fork (16)
4. Fort Dorchester
5. T.L. Hanna
Receiving votes: Boiling Springs, Spartanburg, West Florence, Clover, Spring Valley, Greenwood and Rock Hill.
1. Hartsville (16)
2. South Pointe
3. Belton-Honea Path
4. Myrtle Beach
6. North Myrtle Beach
10. North Augusta
Receiving votes: Eastside, Wren, Daniel, Beaufort and Lakewood.
1. Dillon (16)
5. Strom Thurmond
7. Wade Hampton (H)
10. Union County
Receiving votes: Crescent, Seneca, Newberry, May River, Georgetown, Manning, Pendleton, Academic Magnet.
1. Abbeville (16)
3. Carvers Bay
5. Southside Christian
6. Whale Branch
Receiving votes: Batesburg-Leesville, Chesterfield, Latta, Woodland, Andrews, Gray Collegiate, Blacksburg, Landrum and Silver Bluff.
1. Lamar (16)
2. C.E. Murray
3. Lake View
5. Ridge Spring-Monetta
6. Dixie and Timmonsville (tie)
8. Green Sea-Floyds
Receiving votes: Williston-Elko, St. John’s, Blackville-Hilda, Baptist Hill, Denmark-Olar, Fox Creek, Scott’s Branch and Great Falls.
Voters: Chris Dearing, The State; Bret McCormick, The Herald; Lou Bezjak, The State; Travis Jenkins, Chester News Reporter; Jed Blackwell, Spartanburg Herald-Journal; Bob Castello, Greenville News; Chris Burgin, 100.1 The Fan; Eric Russell, Aiken Standard; Scott Chancey, Florence Morning News; Dennis Brunson, Sumter Item; Justin Jarrett, Lowcountry Sports; Chris Clark, Orangeburg Times and Democrat; David Roberts, Greenwood Index-Journal; Ian Guerin; David Shelton, Charleston Post and Courier; Lake Morris, Anderson Independent Mail.