The fourth annual Porter-Gaud Volleyball Invitational just might be a preview of the state playoffs.

PMB’s Top 10 High School Football Teams in the Lowcountry

Bowman’s Top 10Here’s how The Post and Courier’s Phil Bowman ranks the top 10 high school football teams in the Lowcountry:Rk Last Team Comment 1. 1. Goose Creek “Ground Chuck” offense continues to roll up yards 2. 3. Stratford Knights look to knock off the other Gamecocks 3. 5. Timberland Wolves have two close encounters to begin season 4. 2. Ashley Ridge Foxes still the team to beat in Region 8-AAAA 5. 7. Bishop England Bishops put 14-game winning streak on line 6. 9. Wando Warriors hitting on all gears with 2-0 record 7. 4. Summerville Green Wave can’t make mistakes and expect to win 8. 10. Fort Dorchester Patriots pick up impressive victory on the road 9. NR. Cane Bay Cobras can’t celebrate Summerville win too long10. 6. Berkeley Stags have won only four of their last 12 games

The tournament opens Friday and crowns its champion Saturday night. The field includes some of the best teams in the state, including three defending state champions. Porter-Gaud won its second straight SCISA Class AAA state title last fall, while Bishop England won yet another High School League Class AA title. Also in the field is St. Joseph’s, which captured the High School League’s Class A state title.

“We have some big Class AAAA schools coming including some from the Columbia area,” Porter-Gaud coach Ashley Heidtke said. “We like to have the early season tournament to see where we stand and where we need to get to by the time late October rolls around.”

The rest of the field includes Ashley Hall, Wando, First Baptist, Pinewood, James Island, Goose Creek, West Ashley, Lexington, Hammond, Boiling Springs, Spring Valley, Northwestern, and Camden.

Porter-Gaud beat perennial power Ashley Hall the past two seasons in the state final and has compiled a 70-11 record in the stretch.

The Cyclones have four returning seniors in the starting lineup — Julia McAvoy, Lexie Meyers, Ali Waters and Bailey Crump.

“We don’t have any juniors, so we’re blessed to have four outstanding seniors,” Heidtke said. “They are good leaders and are proof of what hard work can do. The younger players have good role models.”

Porter-Gaud and Ashley Hall will clash in the regular season on Sept. 11 and Oct. 9. There’s a good chance the rivals will play in another state championship.

“But for that to happen, we have to work on our focus and determination,” Heidtke said. “We have to be the best team we can possibly be by the end of October.”

Timm commits

Cane Bay pitcher Austin Timm has committed to play for Florence Darlington Tech.

The senior was 2-1 on the mound last spring with a 1.56 ERA.

He also played Legion ball over the summer for the Post 166 team and compiled a 1.44 ERA while batting a team-best .372 with 17 RBIs.

Attention coaches

Coaches of fall sports or their representatives should email or call in results of games as quickly as possible to ensure they appear in the next day’s edition. Email results to, or call 937-5586 or (800) 209-2609.

Football statistics will run on Fridays. Stats must be received by Wednesday. Call 937-5592, fax 937-5579 or email at

Finally, nominations for football players of the week must be made by noon Monday.

Call in nominations at 937-5592 or by email at

Follow Philip M. Bowman on Twitter: @pandcphil