High School Football

John Paul II, Thomas Heyward, Beaufort Academy headed to title games; May River gets first playoff victory

May River battled Gilbert in a second-round Class 3A playoff game Friday, Nov. 16, 2018.
May River battled Gilbert in a second-round Class 3A playoff game Friday, Nov. 16, 2018. Special for The Island Packet

Three Lowcountry teams will play for state championships next weekend.

John Paul II, Thomas Heyward and Beaufort Academy earned spots in SCISA title games with wins Friday night.

John Paul II defeated Robert E. Lee 49-6 to earn its first trip to the SCISA 2A title game. The Warriors will face Florence Christian on Saturday at Benedict College in Columbia. It is just John Paul II’s third season of football.

Thomas Heyward is back in the SCISA Class A championship with the 52-30 win over Carolina Academy. The Rebels play Pee Dee Academy at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday at Benedict. Pee Dee defeated THA in the playoffs the last two years.

Beaufort Academy is headed to the 8-man title game in coach Mark Clifford’s first year. The Eagles defeated Jefferson Davis, 40-30 and will play Andrew Jackson on Friday at Calhoun Academy at 7:30 p.m.

Andrew Jackson is going for its fourth straight championship and has a 48-game winning streak. Beaufort Academy lost to Andrew Jackson earlier this year.

John Paul II 49, Robert E. Lee Academy 6

Rashad Battiste scored in three ways as the Warriors earned a spot in the title game.

Battiste caught a touchdown pass, returned an interception for a score and scored on a blocked punt for the Warriors. Quarterback Sam Summa threw a touchdown pass and ran for one.

Jordan Sims and Freddie Atkins also had TDs.

Thomas Heyward Academy 52, Carolina Academy 30

Quarterback Jake Masters threw for three touchdowns and ran for two as THA earned a spot in the SCISA Class A championship.

Trey Pusha had a kickoff return for a touchdown to give THA a 15-8 lead in the first quarter. The Rebels’ defense came up with five turnovers.

It is THA’s first championship appearance since 2011 but the Rebels haven’t won a championship since 1981.

Beaufort Academy 40, Jefferson Davis 30

Quarterback Dawson Coleman accounted for four touchdowns as Beaufort Academy earned a spot in the 8-man championship.

Running back De’Shaun Epps ran for a TD and caught one for the Eagles, who will face Andrew Jackson in the championship. AJ defeated Beaufort Academy, 40-28, on Oct. 5.

May River 41, Lake City 12

Playing their first home playoff game, the Sharks got their first postseason victory by defeating Lake City in the Class 3A playoffs.

The Sharks will host Gilbert in the second round next week.

Running back Braden Morales and quarterback Ahmad Green each rushed for three touchdowns for the Sharks. May River led 41-0 at halftime.

Whale Branch 30, Oceanside Collegiate 28

The Warriors used a punishing running game to pull a first-round upset in the Class 2A playoffs.

Whale Branch plays top-seeded Carvers Bay next week.

The Warriors rushed for 326 yards. Running back Irvin Mulligan had a 93-yard TD run. CJ Brown ran for a score and threw a TD pass to Tre Hipp as Whale Branch jumped out to a 21-0 lead.

Oceanside cut the lead to 27-21 early in the fourth quarter on Sean Cooney’s pass to Malachi Oree. But Whale Branch answered with a Henry Tome field goal. Tome kicked three field goals for the Warriors.

Brookland-Cayce 31, Beaufort 30

Brookland-Cayce scored early in the fourth quarter and was able to hold off a late Eagles rally to win the Class 4A playoff opener.

The game was delayed twice by weather and didn’t end until almost 1 a.m. The game was stopped with 3:10 left in the fourth and Beaufort with the ball at the 22.

The first play after the delay, the Eagles fumbled. The Bearcats were able to run out the clock after that.

Tyler Haley had two TD runs for Beaufort, including a 75-yarder. Haley’s second TD put Beaufort up 30-25 with 11:25 left.

Quarterback Jeffrey Smyth had a touchdown but left the game with an injury.

North Augusta 49, Hilton Head 0

Tanner White ran for four touchdowns and threw another as North Augusta knocked off the Seahawks in the first round of the 4A playoffs.

North Augusta scored 35 points in the second quarter.

Hilton Head finished the season at 4-7.

Wilson 28, Bluffton 3

Zayshaun Rice threw two touchdown passes and ran for one as Wilson upset the region champion Bobcats.

Evan Hayes had Bluffton’s lone score, a 47-yard field goal to cut Wilson’s lead to 7-3 in the first quarter.

Dillon 55, Ridgeland-Hardeeville 0

Defending state champion Dillon defeated Ridgeland-Hardeeville in the first round of the 3A playoffs.

Wildcat quarterback Jay Lester threw for 192 yards, two touchdowns and also ran for a score. Lester’s two touchdown passes went to Ahmari Higgins-Bruce.

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