High School Sports

Postseason looms as area athletic teams resume play after Matthew


With school resuming around Beaufort County on Monday, so do their sports schedules — with some teams already needing to be in playoff mode.

The Lower State girls’ golf tournaments tee off Monday morning, with Bluffton and May River competing in the Class 3A tournament in Aynor and the Class 4A event — previously scheduled for Port Royal’s Barony course — now taking place at Hartsville Country Club.

The Class 4A event takes place just three days after Hilton Head Island and Beaufort managed to squeeze in their regional tournament at Lady’s Island Country Club. The Seahawks prevailed in what essentially was a dual match.

The squeeze is no less tight for the area’s SCISA schools, where the girls’ tennis playoffs begin Tuesday and volleyball teams have two days to play any final regular-season games before the brackets are set for that state tournament.

Hilton Head Prep and Hilton Head Christian earned berths in the SCISA 2A tennis playoffs. Prep is one of the top seeds after a 10-1 regular season. The Dolphins open play Tuesday against Pee Dee Academy in a neutral-site game to be played at Beaufort Academy.

Hilton Head Christian is on the opposite side of the bracket, creating the possibility for an all-Hilton Head final like last spring’s boys tournament. The Eagles must start on the road, though, traveling to Trinity-Byrnes for their Tuesday match.

Beaufort Academy already is assured of a spot in the SCISA 1A title match, earning a bye through the semifinals to take on the winner between Lowcountry Prep and Holly Hill Academy in Saturday’s final in Sumter.

Sumter also will be the site of the semifinals and finals in SCISA’s higher divisions.

In volleyball, Thomas Heyward will seek to build on a 15-match winning streak as the Rebels seek a top seed in the SCISA playoffs. They have lost just once in 21 matches, to Class 5A Goose Creek back in August.

Hilton Head Island, seeking a second consecutive state title, and Beaufort resume their chase for Class 4A playoff berths, while Battery Creek and Bluffton pursue Class 3A spots.

John Paul II will resume its football season Tuesday evening, with a rescheduled home game against Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach. The Golden Warriors still are seeking their first victory since stepping up to the 11-man level.

Next Friday brings the first full football slate since September, highlighted by Beaufort (5-1) taking a trip to unbeaten Cane Bay, which stands No. 6 in the latest Class 4A rankings.

Jeff Shain: 843-706-8123, @jeffshain