Prep Insider Blog

York County (SC) high school football previews

South Pointe wrapped up spring football practice Friday with a one-hour scrimmage, unofficially commencing summer and 7-on-7 season. The next time high school football teams are hitting each other in pads will be August.
South Pointe wrapped up spring football practice Friday with a one-hour scrimmage, unofficially commencing summer and 7-on-7 season. The next time high school football teams are hitting each other in pads will be August.

Here are high school football previews for York County, compiled by Observer correspondent Jay Edwards

PREVIEW LINKS

Preseason All-State Team Released

Observer-area County previews

2017 high school football schedules

CAROLINA CRUSADERS (WESTMINSTER CATAWBA)

Head Coach: Brian White (1st year as Carolina Crusaders

2016 Record (Conference): 5-7 (5-5 in Pioneer Football League).

2017 Conference: Pioneer Football League (PFL).

Returning Starters: 11

Returning Lettermen: N/A.

Key Returning Starters: N/A.

Key Newcomers: N/A.

Outlook: Former defensive coordinator, Brian White, takes over a Carolina Crusaders

--JAY EDWARDS

CLOVER

Head Coach: Brian Lane (1st year as Clover football coach/88-39 overall).

2016 Record (Conference): 6-5 (1-3 in Region IV, AAAAA).

2017 Conference: Region IV, AAAAA.

Returning Starters: 7

Returning Lettermen: 9

Key Returning Starters: Garrett Lutz, Sr., C (6-3, 290); Semaj Larkin, Sr., RB (5-11, 185); Nick Sciba, Sr., K/P (5-10, 165).

Key Newcomers: Zion Robbins, So., WR (6-0, 170); Heze Massey, Jr., WR (6-2, 175); Jaylin Lane, So., WR (5-9, 155).

Outlook: Clover took a big step last year with their first winning season and playoff appearance since 2010, going 6-5. But the Blue Eagles must replace 15 starters and their head coach, Chad Smith in the unforgiving Region IV, AAAAA. However, former Byrnes coach, Brian Lane, will bring a new energy to the Clover program as he introduces the spread offense (Clover ran Wing-T for decades), and will look to seniors, RB Semaj Larkin and C Garrett Lutz to lead a young team that will benefit from a more wide open offense featuring WR

--JAY EDWARDS

FORT MILL

Head Coach: Ed Susi (10th year as Fort Mill football coach)

2016 Record (Conference): 3-7 (1-3 in the Region IV, AAAAA).

2017 Conference: Region IV, AAAAA

Returning Starters: 12

Returning Lettermen: 21

Key Returning Starters: Ryan Heriot, Sr., ATH/WR/RB/S (5-11, 170); Grant Stevens, Sr., LB/S (5-11, 165); Shane Boyle, Sr., Slot (5-7, 150); Trey Reed, Sr., OL (6-0, 265); Bartow Keller, Sr., S (6-0, 175).

Key Newcomers: Lawrence Adams, Jr., DB/RB (5-11, 165); Cam Saunders, Jr., WR/DB (5-11, 160).

Outlook: Fort Mill has an annual challenge in one of the toughest regions, Region IV (AAAAA) in the state. But Coach Ed Susi and company believe they have the chemistry, experience and athletic talent, led by seniors, Ryan Heriot (66 tackles, four interceptions) and LB Grant Stevens (104 tackles) to move into the upper echelon of the league and push Northwestern for conference supremacy.

--JAY EDWARDS

NATION FORD

Head Coach: Michael Allen (7th year as Nation Ford football coach).

2016 Record (Conference): 7-4 (3-1 Region IV, AAAAA).

2017 Conference: Region IV, AAAAA.

Returning Starters: 14

Returning Lettermen: 35

Key Returning Starters: Dewuan McCullum, Jr., WR (6-0, 185); Ben Tiupulotu, Sr., WR/DB (6-4, 210); Travell Crosby, Sr., OL/DL (6-8, 315); Jack Snowberger, Sr., OL/DL (6-3, 285); John Young, Sr., LB/WR (5-10, 180); Vinny Catan, Sr., LB (5-10, 200); Skyler Delong, Sr., K (6-3, 185).

Key Newcomers: Eric Stroud, Sr., WR/DB (6-2, 190).

Outlook: The Falcons have won 16 games in the last two years, despite competing in the brutal, Region IV, AAAAA. With 14 starters back, including two-way standouts, WR/DB Dewuan McCullum, Ben Tuipulotu, an experienced offensive and defensive fronts and a major special teams

--JAY EDWARDS

NORTHWESTERN

Head Coach: David Pierce (2nd year as Northwestern head football coach/29 years as Northwestern assistant).

2016 Record (Conference): 9-2 (4-0 in Region IV, AAAAA)

2017 Conference: Region IV, AAAAA.

Returning Starters: 10 (5 offense; 5 defense).

Returning Lettermen: N/A

Key Returning Starters: Fentell Cyprus, Jr., CB (6-1, 175); DeQuez Harris, Sr., WR/RB (6-2, 215); Christian Steele, Sr., MLB (6-3, 220); Josiah Ivey, Sr., C/G (6-1, 285); Jamario Holley, Jr., WR (6-1, 180); K.D. Canaty, Sr., OL (6-5, 285); Greg McMoore, Jr., NG/OL (5-8, 280); Chance Miller, Sr., DT (6-1, 240); Jordan Starkes, Sr., WR/QB (6-1, 190).

Key Newcomers: N/A.

Outlook: After 29 years as a Northwestern assistant, David Pierce had a strong regular season going 9-1, winning another region title (Region IV, AAAA this time). But, the Trojans have plenty of motivation going into 2017 after a first round playoff loss to Gaffney ended last year abruptly. Northwestern returns 10 starters, five on both sides of the ball, led by WR

--JAY EDWARDS

SOUTH POINTE (SC)

Head Coach: Strait Herron (7th year as South Pointe football coach/77-11).

2016 Record (Conference): Region III, AAAA.

2017 Conference: 14-1 (5-0 in Region III, AAAA).

Returning Starters: 10

Returning Lettermen: 45

Key Returning Starters: Derion Kendrick, Sr., QB/ATH (6-1, 195); Eli Adams, Sr., DE (6-2, 225); B.T. Potter, Sr., K (5-11, 165); Steve Gilmore (Jr.), Sr., CB/WR (5-11, 170); Jamari Currence, Sr., CB (5-11, 160).

Key Newcomers: Ty Good, Sr., WR; Isaac Ross, Sr., WR.

Outlook: The Stallions have won three straight state championships (two AAA; one AAAA) and have a lot of reasons to believe they can make it four in a row -- with Clemson commit, senior QB Derion Kendrick (passed for 3,348 yards, 37 touchdowns, Region III (AAAA) player of the year) and classmates, DB/WR, Steve Gilmore, Jr. (major, Division I recruit, younger brother of New Patriots

--JAY EDWARDS

YORK

Head Coach: Bobby Carroll (7th year as York head football coach, 106-34 overall)

2016 Record (Conference): 6-6 (4-1)

2017 Conference: Region III, AAAA

Returning Starters: 14

Returning Lettermen: 28

Key Returning Starters: Ethan Mitchell, Jr., QB (5-11, 175); J.T. Sanders, Sr., LB (5-10, 205); Ladarius Allison, Jr., WR (6-1, 185); Shamari Williams, Sr., DE (6-6, 245); Tajh Reid-Stanley, Sr., DB (6-0 170); Dondre Douglas, Sr., LB (6-0, 180).

Key Newcomers: Joe Wade, Sr., RB (5-9, 180); Lane Towery, Jr., OL (6-6, 300).

Outlook: After winning 41 games in the previous four years, York (6-6 last year) was up and down in 2016. With juniors, QB Ethan Mitchell and WR Ladarius Allison, leading the offense, while senior LB, J.T. Sanders (107 tackles, six sacks) back to lead the defense, the Cougars have the experience (14 starters back) and talent to make a run at Region III, AAAA title and be a factor deep into postseason play.

--JAY EDWARDS

**Still need Preseason football information from Rock Hill.

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