Sumter eliminates Summerville from the football playoffs
Summerville held a 14-point lead in the first half of its semi-final playoff game against Sumter and took a 13-point lead into the fourth period, but the Gamecocks rallied to erase both deficits and earn a 28-27 win.
Sumter (9-5) will advance to face Dutch Fork in the Class AAAA, Division 1 state championship game Saturday. Summerville (11-3) was eliminated from the playoffs with the loss.
“Sumter is playing good and has won its last seven games now so I wish them a lot of luck,” Summerville coach John McKissick said. “We had them in a hole and should have forced them to punt but we didn’t. We played hard so now we just have to forget this. There is going to be adversity in life no matter what you do.”
The Green Wave broke a 14-14 tie Friday at Memorial Stadium with a 20-yard pass from Sawyer Bridges to senior receiver Johnston McCurry with 2:08 remaining in the third quarter. Bridges was under pressure when he made the pass and McCurry had to battle a Sumter defensive back to secure the catch.
Summerville forced a Sumter punt and then drove 51 yards to score on a 7-yard run by Chris Felder to take a 27-14 lead in the final minute of the third. However, the PAT kick was low.
Early in the final quarter, Sumter took advantage of a short field to score. Kyjon Tyler caught a short pass and then broke three tackles on a 37-yard TD play.
Summerville played for field possession and pinned the Gamecocks down at their own 5. However, with approximately six minutes remaining Sumter quarterback James Barnes led the Gamecocks up field on a 95-yard scoring drive.
The QB completed two passes to Tyler on the drive and two to Xavion Burson, including a 41-yard TD pass with 1:25 remaining. Among the Green Wave mistakes on the drive were an offsides penalty on fourth-and-3 that resulted in a Sumter first down.
Vince Watkins’ PAT kick put the Gamecocks up 28-27. Summerville started its ensuing possession at its own 24 with 1:18 remaining, but the opportunity to set up a potential game-winning field goal was thwarted when Jayln Lewis intercepted Summerville’s first-down pass.
Summerville has been a slow-starting team in several games this season but that wasn’t the case this week. The Green Wave scored twice in a 10-second period to take a 14-0 lead halfway through the opening quarter.
Summerville quarterback Sawyer Bridges connected with senior receiver William Luck for a 73-yard touchdown pass with 6:17 remaining in the first to open the scoring. After the kickoff return, Summerville defensive back Kevin Dickerson intercepted a Sumter first-down pass and returned it 33 yards into the end zone for a 14-point Green Wave advantage with David Kennedy’s second PAT kick.
But Sumter tied the game going into the half with a pair of TD passes to Tyler.
He made a catch off a Summerville deflection for a 30-yard TD on the final play from scrimmage of the first quarter. After Sumter forced Summerville to punt on its next possession, Tyler capped an 81-yard drive by sliding in the end zone and snatching a Barnes’ pass just inches before it hit the turf for a 34-yard TD play.
Sumter 6 8 0 15—28
Summerville 14 0 13 0—27
SV — William Luck 73 pass from Sawyer Bridges (David Kennedy kick)
SV — Kevin Dickinson 33 interception return (Kennedy kick)
ST — Kyjon Tyler 30 pass from James Barnes (Kick failed)
ST — Tyler 34 pass from Barnes (Russell Jenkins pass from Barnes)
SV — Johnston McCurry 20 pass from Bridges (Kennedy kick)
SV — Chris Felder 7 run (kick failed)
ST — Tyler 37 pass from Barnes (Vince Watkins kick)
ST — Xavion Burson 41 pass from Barnes (Watkins kick)
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