The Green Wave will attempt to hand the Knights their first loss of the season Friday.
Summerville (4-1) travels to Stratford (5-0) for a 7:30 p.m. kickoff. The game should be a crowd pleaser as the Knights have one of the top quarterbacks and offenses in the state while the Green Wave has a strong defense.
“Against Stratford we will have to get off our blocks and put pressure on their quarterback,” Summerville coach John McKissick said. “He is good and they do a good job getting passes off quickly when they need to. They also have a strong running back and their defense is basically the same as it was last year when they beat us. We have our work cut out for us.”
Stratford QB Jacob Park has committed to the University of Georgia. The senior has a strong arm, but is also a capable runner. Park has started since he was a freshman so he has developed a good sense for when it is best to dump the ball off or take off up field, and when the conditions are favorable to air it out.
In a 43-0 shutout over Colleton County last week, Park completed 9 of 18 passes for 232 yards and three touchdowns and also ran for a TD. His favorite targets that evening were running back Jordan Johnson and receiver/running back hybrid Tyree Scroggins. The duo combined to account for 179 receiving yards and 115 rushing yards.
The scary part is those three aren’t the only offensive weapons Stratford coach Ray Stackley has at his disposal.
The Knights defense was as impressive last week, holding a Colleton offense that has moved the ball well this season to only 50 yards of total offense and forcing three turnovers. As of late, the Cougars have moved the ball well through the air, but Stratford held them to only 15 passing yards.
The Knights’ defensive backfield is full of returning starters, including safety Taylor Morrison and cornerback Sheldon Reid. The two combined to make 17 interceptions last season.
However, the Stratford secondary should receive a good test Friday. Summerville quarterback Sawyer Bridges has thrown for 854 yards and seven touchdowns this season and should have most of the rust knocked off by this point.
“We are still making mistakes so we aren’t where we need to be but I think we should be able to present a mixed attack,” McKissick said. “Sawyer’s completion percentage was up last week. It was right at 56 percent, which isn’t bad.”
The sophomore QB, who started for the varsity all last season, has several good targets. Donnell Bryan leads the Wave receivers with 12 catches for 191 yards this year. Sean Smith, William Luck and Johnston McCurry all have more than 150 receiving yards for the season and David Coccoli and Cameron Burnette are also threats in the passing game.
When Summerville runs the ball they often go to Jacerie Ponder, who is averaging 5 yards per carry.
Summerville has played some tough defense this year. The Wave defensive line and linebacking corps have held up well against the run. While a season-ending injury cost Summerville its best defensive back, the team’s secondary has some ballers that are doing a pretty good job.
Summerville has one shutout on the season, Cane Bay. The Wave has held all other opponents, except Goose Creek, to under 21 points.
The Wave has 15 sacks on the year and 30 tackles for a loss. The defense has 26 QB hurries.
The game will pit two of the area’s top coaches against each other. Both are veterans with awards and accolades aplenty. Both were recently named South Carolina finalists for USA Today’s first Best High School Football Coach Contest.
Contact Roger Lee @ 873-9424 ext. 213 or email@example.com