Bracket breakdown for Class 4A football playoffs

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) - Everythingin the 2013 high school football season now comes down to filling in blanklines on a bracket.

Last Friday night, teams in Class1A, 2A, 3A and SCISA kicked off their playoff schedules while 4A schools willbegin their playoff runs this week. Here is how the teams are paired.

Class 4A, Division 1 - Upper Bracket

In the Class 4A Division 1pairings, 16-seed Wando heads to the Upstate to take on the top-seeded Byrnes. Byrnesfinished the season at 10-7 overall, 7-0 in their region, and is ranked the No.2 team in the state. The Rebels' only loss came at the hands of Northwestern,the top-ranked team in the state, in overtime.

Wando on the other hand, hasstruggled in recent weeks, losing three of their last four games on aseason-ending schedule that had them taking on Stratford,Goose Creek, Sumterand Cane Bay. The Warriors finished the season4-7 overall and 2-2 in the region.

To be effective against theUpstate powerhouse, the Warriors will need to control the guy taking the snapsfor the Rebels, Shuler Bentley. He's been putting up huge numbers, including a530-yard game in which he went 22 for 32 with 9 touchdowns. The Rebels put upbig numbers every week, and a lot of it is on Shuler's arm.

Eight-seeded Dorman hosts theNo. 9 Lexington. Dorman is entering playoffs with a 7-4 record overall and a4-3 record in the region, while Lexingtonended the season with a 9-2 record overall and 4-1 in the region. Lexington comes inwinning three of their last four games while Dorman has struggled, losing threeof their last four.

The undefeated No. 4 seed Spring Valley takes on No. 13 Spartanburg. The Vikingsare also ranked fifth in the state and have been putting up some strong numberson the scoreboard. Spartanburgentered the playoffs with an overall record of 6-5 and a 2-5 record in theirregion.

Fifth-seeded Dutch Fork playshost to 12-seeded Fort Dorchester to round outthe upper bracket. The No. 5 Silver Foxes finished 8-3 overall, 4-1 in their regionand are currently ranked eighth in the state. Meanwhile, Fort Dorchestercomes in with a 7-4 record overall and 3-2 in the region.

Dutch Fork has already had onetaste of the Lowcountry this year in a loss to Goose Creek, but after losingto the Gators and Irmo in consecutive weeks, they have won four of their lastfive games. The Patriots have gone 3-2 in the last five games, with lossescoming at Beaufort and Summerville.

Class 4A, Division 1 - Lower Bracket

In the Class 4A lower bracket,the two seed Hillcrest takes on 15-seed Rock Hill. The Rams move into playoffs on a 10-1 recordoverall and 7-0 in their region, a season that was capped off with wins overWoodmont, Easley, TL Hanna, and Laurens. The Rams have been strong this seasonand have not seen a loss since Sept. 13 to Dorman, a team sitting in the No. 8spot in the bracket.

Rock Hill, however, has struggled at pointsthis year and ends the regular season with losing records overall and in theirregion, 4-7 and 3-4 respectively. Rock Hill had a rough close to the season, facing SouthPointe, Nation Ford and Northwestern in three of the last four weeks.

The No. 7 seed Sumter hosts 10-seed Mauldin in the thirdmatchup of the lower bracket. The Gamecocks come off wins against Wando, Conway, Carolina Forest, and West Florenceto close out the season. {}Mauldin's 7-4,4-3 season ended at Boiling Springs in a 150-point game. Mauldin has no problemwith offense, even posting 49 points against the top-seeded Byrnes earlier thisyear in a 76-49 loss.

The Mavericks have posted 295points in their last five games. By comparison, the Gamecocks have scored 143points in their last five games.

Summerville's 9-2 overallseason and perfect play in their region landed them a home game against theteam down the street, Ashley Ridge. John McKissick'sGreen Wave are currently ranked 13th in the state and are riding a five-gamewin streak and their only two losses came at the hands of Goose Creek andStratford.

This marks the second time thetwo teams have faced off. On Nov. 1, Summerville pulled off a 24-21 win ontheir home turf, so Friday night's game will be very familiar ground for bothteams.

Ashley Ridgeends the year at 4-7 overall and 2-3 in the region, and has lost three of theirlast five games.

In the final game of thebracket, six-seeded Gaffney faces No. 11 Boiling Springs. {}In another rematch game, Gaffney (8-3, 6-1) ishoping history repeats itself against the Bulldogs (7-4, 4-3). In the Nov. 1game, Gaffney pulled out a 59-54 win.

Both teams have strong offensesthat are capable of putting big numbers on the scoreboard, so the game couldcome down to who has the ball last.


Class 4A, Division 2 - Upper Bracket

The Goose Creek Gators are thetop-seeded team in Division 2 and rightfully so. The team has put togetheranother perfect season and their only real close game was Friday's 14-7 winover Stratford.It was an important game for anyone watching the Gators' likely path throughthe playoffs because it showed they are not just a high octane offense - they havea strong defense, too.

Wade Hampton comes in with a 5-6season, 2-3 in their region. The Red Devils have been slow this season onoffense, but seem to have turned it around in their 57 points against BatteryCreek. They'll need an offense that's ready to go when they step on to thefield in Goose Creek.

The winner of that game willmove on to face the winner of the game between No. 8 South Pointe and No. 9Irmo.

The South Pointe Stallions areranked sixth in the state and enter playoffs with a 9-2 record, 6-1 in theirregion. They most recently blanked Lancaster,41-0, and have another shut out against Clover (42-0). The Stallions posted 100points in their first two games and 110 in their last three games.

Meanwhile, Irmo comes in with recordsof 6-5, 4-1 and have put together three wins after a 30-point beating against Spring Valley. Notably, they pulled out a 42-41 win overDutch Fork earlier this year.

And this will be a rematch forthe two teams from Week 1 when Irmo lost 21-17 to the Stallions.

The undefeated No. 4 SouthFlorence will play host to 13-seed Easley, a team that comes in with a 5-6record overall and a 4-3 record in their region.

South Florence won 9-3 overWest Florence last week and over Stratfordthe week before. Easley has won three of their last four games.

In the last game of the upper bracket,No. 5 Stratford takes on No. 12 Nation Ford.

The Knights (9-2, 3-1) are astrong team and have only taken losses to Goose Creekand South Florence, back-to-back games toround out the season, so they are definitely looking to turn around the currentstreak in the first round of the playoffs. Led by quarterback Jacob Park, a Georgiacommit who has shown every week that he is as dangerous in the air as he is onhis feet, Stratford will give Nation Ford a heck of a fight come Friday night.

Nation Ford, however, beat Fort Millto end their season, but preceded that game with a beating againstNorthwestern, 63-18. Nation Ford started their season with a 57-56 win overForestview, so if Stratfordlets them stick around late in the game, the Falcons have the guts to stick itout and pull off a win.

Class 4A, Division 2 - Lower Bracket

In the lower bracket, theperennial powerhouse Northwestern hosts West Florence.The Trojans have a perfect record and are destroying teams on the scoreboard. Theyhave posted more than 200 points in the last four games of the season. Chancesare, if the team is from the Upstate and in the playoffs, they've had to take abeating from Northwestern.

West Florence comes into thegame at 6-5, 2-2, most recently losing to South Florence.

The second game of the bracketpits No. 7 Greenwood (8-3, 6-1) against No. 10 York (9-2, 5-2). Greenwood had a shakystart to the season, going 2-3 in their first five games before going on a five-gamewin streak to end the season. They haven't lost since Sept. 27.

York comes in losing two of their last threegames, including a 45-15 loss to Northwestern. The front of the Cougars' seasonwas strong though; they went 7-0.

No. 3 North Augusta is at homeagainst 14-seeded Laurens. The Laurens Raiders come in at 6-5, most recentlylosing to Greenwood.North August comes in at 10-1 and has posted wins over Dutch Fork, Sumter, andTL Hanna.

And the final game of the Class4A bracket pairs the 6-seed Beaufort against No. 11 Blythewood. Beaufort has an8-3 record and is riding a two-game win streak. The Eagles' three losses allcame together in the middle of the season against AshleyRidge, Summerville and Goose Creek. The Eagleshave notable wins over Fort Dorchester and Wando.

Blythewood enters the playoffswith a 7-4 record and recently won over Ridge View and have other wins overSumter and Aiken.

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