Area high school football teams find out playoff matchups

11/03/2013 5:36 PM

11/04/2013 3:43 PM

There are plenty of people who oppose the nearly all-inclusive Class AA playoff system.

The structure, put into effect in 2011, keeps only four teams from the entire 52-school class out of the postseason. Opponents believe it waters down the playoffs, and to an extent, the regular season.

But there’s an easy formula for the naysayers to look at with the current system. Now, the Class AA teams that either have a home game or a bye in the first round would have made it under the former single-bracket method used through the 2010 season, when only the top four teams from each of the state’s eight regions qualified.

That being the case, Aynor knows it would have been a postseason team each of the last two seasons, with or without the two-tiered breakdown in Class AA. The Blue Jackets will host Marion on Friday in the first round of the Class AA, Division I playoffs.

“I think everyone bangs their head against the wall; it’s one extra game,” Aynor coach Jody Jenerette said. “People are looking for a perfect scenario. There’s no perfect scenario. It’s one extra game. I mean, Class AAAA plays 11 games. … This is an 11-game season.

“You’ve got to play well during the season to get a home playoff game. If we were on the road, I’d say ‘We got to play better.’ ”

Aynor defeated Kingstree last season in the first round of the Division II playoffs before falling to Lee Central. In 2011, the first year of the two-division postseason, the Blue Jackets went on the road to beat Garrett and then lost to Silver Bluff.

Prior to that, the Blue Jackets had not won a playoff game in two decades.

Aynor defeated Marion 42-16 during the teams’ Region VIII-AA regular-season matchup on Oct. 11, so Jenerette’s team will be favored to win a playoff game for the third straight season.

Loris, which finished second in Region VIII-AA, will have a first-round bye prior to playing the winner of No. 6 Ridgeland-Hardeeville and No. 11 Lake City at home in the second round.

Waccamaw started the season 4-1 before losing all five region games for the second straight season. The overall performance left the Warriors with the final seed in the Class AA, Division I bracket. Tyronne Davis’ team will play at Edisto.

In Class A, Carvers Bay earned the top overall seed in the Division I bracket. Between last year’s loss to Hemingway in the opening round and the list of opponents awaiting coach Nate Thompson’s team, Carvers Bay will be on its toes.

On Friday, Carvers Bay will play Baptist Hill, which enters the playoffs at 6-4. And outside of Region VI champion St. John’s (also 6-4), the rest of the teams this week are at worst 7-3 heading into the first round.

While all of the Class AA and A area teams were announced to the playoffs fields on Sunday, three Grand Strand Class AAA squads learned their matchups Saturday.

Socastee already knew it had earned the top overall seed. The Braves (10-0) and first-year coach Doug Illing will play Hilton Head on Friday.

Myrtle Beach (6-4) also earned a home playoff game and will play Berkeley. The Seahawks defeated the Stags in the third round of the 2010 playoffs en route to a Class AAA state title.

North Myrtle Beach, which fell to Myrtle Beach on Friday, will head to Orangeburg-Wilkinson (9-1). The Chiefs will be making their first playoff appearance since 2009.

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