One of three teams to claim a share of the Region 7-2A title a season ago, the Vikings have the capability — specifically on the offensive side of the ball — to make a push for the outright crown in 2017. Quarterback Dylan Brewer returns to the fold after throwing for 2,345 yards and 18 touchdowns last year as a sophomore. He will have a pair of his top receivers in Kendall Moultrie (55 catches for 851 yards and seven touchdowns) and Deonte Stanley (36 catches for 498 yards and six touchdowns) back as well. Linebackers Mikey Dotson and Chandler Nolan will anchor the Vikings defense.
Contenders: Carvers Bay (9-4), Andrews (9-3)
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As gifted as Latta is, specifically on the offensive side of the ball, Carvers Bay has the potential to be equally explosive, thanks to the return of a number of solid skill players. The Bears welcome back running back Toronto King — who played for Myrtle Beach a season ago — to go with weapons such as Janaz Sumpter, Tyrik Reed, Dijon Goss and others. Carvers Bay will go as far as its defense will allow, however, the team needing to fill a couple voids on the defensive side of the ball. … Andrews has explosive capability as well, thanks to the return of quarterback Jaizell Murphy (818 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns) and running back Michael Pipkin (1,113 rushing yards and eight touchdowns), as well as wideout Jerimiah Shaw (26 receptions for 561 yards and five touchdowns). The Yellow Jackets also have their share of holes to fill on defense. However, having defensive lineman Sayvon Morris back can only help matters. … Mullins somewhat is having to go back to the drawing board, this after losing a prolific passer in the form of quarterback Riyan Gore. If able to find a capable arm, the Auctioneers’ new signal caller will have a pair of talented wideouts at his disposal in Xavier Legette (44 catches for 733 yards and eight touchdowns) and Nijohn Bethea (22 catches for 344 yards and two touchdowns). An experienced offensive line should also help Mullins win battles on the line of scrimmage. … Marion, Johnsonville and Kingstree all have potential to throw a wrench in the plans of any of the region’s top teams.