In the past two weeks, Wilson looked like a team ready to challenge the powers in the very competitive Region VI-4A.
The Tigers were 2-1 in the region following a 14-9 win over a ranked North Myrtle Beach team and narrow 14-13 loss to Hartsville, the top-ranked team in the state in Class 4A.
But it took Myrtle Beach just two possessions and 4:10 of game time Friday night to match Hartsville’s point total from last week, and the Seahawks never let up at Doug Shaw Memorial Stadium, routing Wilson 49-7.
Junior quarterback Luke Doty completed 23 of 35 passes for 281 yards and seven touchdowns, including three apiece to senior receivers Da’Ron Finkley and Marcus Grissett.
“We put together a great offensive performance,” said Doty, who also threw an interception. “We put a lot of points up on the board. We’ve got a lot of guys around us that can make plays and they definitely did tonight. They really did make me look good.”
Myrtle Beach (6-0) improved to 3-0 in Region VI-4A with games remaining against North Myrtle Beach next week and Hartsville in the regular season finale, which will likely determine the region champion.
Hartsville remained undefeated with a 35-12 win over North Myrtle Beach on Friday. Wilson is 5-4 overall and 2-2 in the region.
“This is a tough region. We joke as coaches, this is like the SEC,” Myrtle Beach coach Mickey Wilson said. “. . . It’s just a great league, and the good thing about it is you’re going to be battle tested when you come out of this region and go into the playoffs.”
According to unofficial stats, Grissett had eight receptions for 130 yards, Finkley had five catches for 50 yards and Roache had four receptions for 53 yards.
“We prepare ourselves in practice to come out fast and jump on them early,” Grissett said. “We play hard in practice and make sure everybody knows what they’re doing so we can execute.”
Myrtle Beach’s defense did its job as well, consistently harassing Wilson quarterback Anthony Santianna throughout the game.
Finkley had both touchdown passes in the opening 4:10, a 10-yarder just 1:13 into the game followed by a 19-yarder.
Myrtle Beach’s third touchdown of the first quarter was set up by a big hit by linebacker Salim Sessions on scrambling Wilson quarterback Anthony Santianna that caused a fumble at the Tigers’ 31.
Doty wasted no time making the Tigers pay for the turnover, hitting Wyatt Roache streaking down the middle for a 31-yard touchdown pass on the next play.
Defensive back Demarcus Bailey’s interception of Doty on an out route set up Wilson’s lone touchdown, a 28-yard Santianna pass to Antwan Smith late in the first quarter.
An interception by Myrtle Beach junior linebacker Shedrick Pointer set the Seahawks offense up at the Wilson 6 and Doty hit Grissett for a 5-yard TD pass at the right pylon.
A short Wilson punt to its 35 gave Myrtle Beach a short field for another score, a 10-yard Finkley reception that gave the Seahawks a 35-7 lead midway through the second quarter.
In the third quarter, Doty hit Grissett for a pair of touchdowns, a 32-yarder when Grissett broke behind the defense, and a 38-yarder when Grissett took a short pass and broke a pair of tackles near the line of scrimmage to break free.
“We had a really good game offensively,” Doty said. “We put a lot of stuff together and made a bunch of big plays.”
With three weeks of cancellations due to Hurricane Florence and flooding, Friday night’s game was Myrtle Beach’s first at home since a Sept. 7 win over Socastee. The Seahawks are home again next week against North Myrtle Beach before traveling to Hartsville.
“We’re just glad to be back home. Our kids were just excited about being back at Doug Shaw and fortunately we’ll be back here next week,” coach Wilson said. “Our kids are excited about playing North Myrtle Beach. We got upset by those guys last year over there and got the ball in the red zone three or four times and didn’t score. Our guys will be jacked up and ready to go.”
MB – Da’Ron Finkley 9 pass from Luke Doty (Chad Toon kick)
MB – Finkley 19 pass from Doty (Toon kick)
MB – Wyatt Roache 31 pass from Doty (Toon kick)
W – Antwan Smith 28 pass from Anthony Santianna (kick good)
MB – Marcus Grissett 5 pass from Doty (Toon kick)
MB – Finkley 10 pass from Doty (Toon kick)
MB – Grissett 32 pass from Doty (Toon kick)
MB – Grissett 40 pass from Doty (Toon kick)