Gators could scramble playoff picture with win


For the Crestwood High School varsity football team, it is as cut and dried as it can be when it comes to the South Carolina High School League playoffs.

Get a victory over Sumter County School District rival Lakewood - by any score, any number of points - today at Donald L. Crolley Memorial Stadium in Dalzell, and the Knights are the No. 3 seed from Region VI-4A. Period.

If the Gators are able to pull out a victory though, then it will come down to the points - that is assuming 2-7 Darlington loses to 8-1 Hartsville - between CHS, LHS and Darlington.

The teams would be left with 1-3 region records and there are two playoff spots to fill. According to Lakewood head coach Larry Cornelius, there's a scenario where Lakewood and Crestwood are in, another where Darlington and Crestwood are in, and one where Lakewood and Darlington make the field.

Here are the scenarios:

- If Lakewood wins and keeps Crestwood under 23 points, Lakewood is the third seed and Crestwood the fourth seed.

- If Lakewood wins and beats Crestwood by a difference of 39 points or more, Darlington is the third seed and Lakewood is the fourth seed.

- If Lakewood wins, but Crestwood scores more than 22 points, Crestwood is No. 3 and Darlington No. 4.

The only way Lakewood can make the playoffs without one of those scenarios is for it to beat Crestwood and have Darlington upset Hartsville.

The Gators are 2-7 on the season and have lost seven straight games. Crestwood is 4-5.

Here's a look at playoff implications in the other local games:

C.E. Murray at Scott's Branch

If Scott's Branch beats C.E. Murray, that would leave those two teams as well as Cross with 3-1 Region V-1A marks. They would all share the region title, but defensive points allowed in the games between the teams would determine the seeding for the playoffs.

Cross has played both C.E. Murray, losing 22-6, and Scott's Branch, winning 42-6. Cross has allowed 28 points, so that means Scott's Branch cant earn the No. 1 seed.

For Scott's Branch to earn the No. 2 seed, it needs to beat CEM by at least 36 points.

Creek Bridge at East Clarendon

There are all kinds of scenarios on the table for East Clarendon.

The most clear cut one is for the Wolverines to beat Creek Bridge and Hannah-Pamplico beat Green Sea-Floyds. That would secure the No. 4 seed from Region VI-1A.

An EC win and a GSF win would leave those two teams and H-P all at 2-3. Defensive points allowed would determine the seeds. EC beat GSF 24-12 and lost to Hannah-Pamplico 48-10, meaning it has allowed 60 points.

If East Clarendon were to lose to Creek Bridge and GSF loses to H-P, then they would be tied at 1-4 and vying for the No. 4 seed and a possible at-large berth. GSF beat Creek Bridge 30-6

Thomas Sumter at Robert E. Lee

Robert E. Lee Academy is locked in as the No. 2 seed from SCISA Region II-2A, win or lose.

Thomas Sumter is out of the playoff hunt, even with a win over REL.

Sumter at Socastee

The Gamecocks are going to be the No. 2 seed from Region VI-5A, win or lose. It could gain a share of the region title with a win and a Conway loss to Carolina Forest, but Conway would get the No. 1 seed since it beat Sumter 14-13 last week.

If Sumter were to lose to Socastee and finished tied for second with either or both Carolina Forest and West Florence at 3-2, it would have the tiebreaker since it beat both of those teams.

Interestingly, Socastee has no chance of getting a playoff spot with a victory.