High School Football Notebook: Bluffton coping with injuries to Boni, Blackshear and others

ccox@islandpacket.com and sfastenau@beaufortgazette.comAugust 26, 2013 

The injuries continue to pile up for Bluffton High School.

Two days after the Bobcats lost senior wide receiver Vinny Boni to a broken collarbone, star defensive end Shameik Blackshear wrote on Twitter that he suffered a "separated clavicle and a slight dislocation" of his shoulder during Friday night's 44-0 win over Whale Branch Early College High School.

The injury is expected to sideline him 3-4 weeks, he wrote. That would likely put him back on the field against James Island on Sept. 20 or in the non-region finale against Hilton Head Island High on Sept. 27.

"A minor set back for a MAJOR come back," Blackshear tweeted.

Coach Ken Cribb noted the Bobcats' depth as a reason for optimism, however. Blackshear, a junior who verbally committed to South Carolina in the spring, will likely be replaced by fellow junior Julien Lee over the next several weeks.

Julien "did well" in the win over Whale Branch, Cribb said.

"We feel good about our depth at every position we have," Cribb said. "We've got somebody who can step in."

Senior super back B.J. Hill, who left the Whale Branch game with an ankle injury, is being treated on a day-to-day basis. Cribb said the converted defensive back, who left the season opener on crutches, will meet with doctors on Monday for a diagnosis.

While Hill has not yet been ruled out for Friday's game, Cribb said DeQuandre Smalls would replace him in the lineup, if necessary. The freshman ran for 29 yards on four carries Friday.

NO TRICKS

Whale Branch was ready for Bluffton's trickery Friday.

As Bluffton prepared to kick to start the second half, Whale Branch coach Jerry Hatcher hollered for assistant Josh Brister, who was talking to the return team.

"Onside," Brister responded, reading Hatcher's mind.

The alert Warriors recovered the ensuing kick, which traveled only about 15 yards.

"The trick play is not unusual," Hatcher said. "It's what they do. They'll call it any time, anywhere."

Earlier in the game, Bluffton faked a field goal on fourth-and-1 from the Warriors' 5. Quarterback Alex Davis's jump pass fell incomplete.

The Warriors' attempt at deception derailed before it began. Facing fourth down from his own 20 to start the fourth quarter, Hatcher called for a fake punt.

Quarterback Devonta Glover was to roll out and pitch to punter Ben Wallace on an option. But the snap hit a player's leg and was recovered by the Bobcats, who scored on the next play.

"I think it would have gone (for a touchdown)," Hatcher said. "There was nobody outside."

SOPHOMORE SHINES

Bluffton quarterback Terrance Heyward showed a little bit flash Friday.

The sophomore backup to starter Alex Davis scored on a nifty 18-yard run early in the fourth quarter and later tossed a 38-yard touchdown pass.

"He's so athletic," Cribb said. "We're excited about his potential.

"He should definitely be a starter. He's such a valuable guy for us at that (backup) position, I've got to have him there. If something happens to Alex, he's just got to be ready to roll right now. We don't have any adjustment time."

WEEK 1 GAMES

Battery Creek at Estill, 7:30 p.m.

Bible Baptist at Thomas Heyward, 7:30 p.m.

Colleton Prep at Hilton Head Prep, 5 p.m.

Hilton Head High at Whale Branch, 7:30 p.m.

Jefferson Davis at Beaufort Academy, 7:30 p.m.

South Effingham at Bluffton, 7:30 p.m.

Wando at Beaufort High, 7:30 p.m.

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