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.”
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.
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Follow Philip M. Bowman on Twitter: @pandcphil