The Goose Creek High School football team wasn't among the top 20 teams in the Lowcounty 12 years ago.
When Chuck Reedy took over as head coach in 2002, he vowed that hard work and commitment were the building blocks that would turn the Gators around.
Today, Goose Creek is one of the elite programs in the state and is looking to expand its brand nationally.
Reedy, who also serves as the school's athletic director, said the Gators are likely to play in the Skyline Chili Crosstown Showdown in southwest Ohio next year. The annual event showcases top teams in Ohio against the best teams around the country. The Gators are tentatively scheduled to play the Centerville Elks.
It also appears the Gators will host a rising power, Eastern Christian Academy, which is based in Elkton, Md., and draws players from Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland and Pennsylvania. That game will be played around the mid-point of the 2014 season.
“We don't have signed contracts, but I'm 95 percent sure that it's going to happen,” said Reedy, whose team has not lost a game on the field to a team from South Carolina since Northwestern beat the Gators in a Division II-AAAA state semifinal in November 2010. “I don't want to sound arrogant, but I want to elevate our program to another level. We want to play the best.”
The probable game against Centerville will be the finale of a triple-header in Week 1.
Centerville is one of the top teams from the Buckeye State and boast two players in the NFL — linebacker A.J. Hawk of the Green Bay Packers and kicker Mike Nugent of the Cincinnati Bengals. ESPN college football analyst Kirk Herbstreit also played quarterback for the Elks in the 1990s.
Eastern Christian was created last year with the backing of a local businessman and was designed to be a showcase team of top football players.
According to Sports Illustrated, Eastern Christian had 54 students last year, including 46 boys. All 46 played football.
Last year, the school staff included four teachers, a nurse, a minister and seven football coaches.
“Eastern Christian, that looks like it will be a game around the fifth week of the season,” Reedy said. “They have something like nine or 10 Division I prospects. It will be a great challenge.”
Nate Schlosser, a 5-5, 152-pound sophomore running back for Academic Magnet, played with his left forearm in a cast Friday against Burke because of a broken finger.
Neither that, nor the Bulldogs, could slow him down. He carried 27 times for 228 yards and three touchdowns in a 63-26 victory.
He has 959 yards rushing this season and could top the 1,000-yard mark during Friday's game at North Charleston.
White commits to CSU
Former Summerville two-sport star Matt White has committed to play baseball for Charleston Southern for the 2015 season.
White currently attends Spartanburg Methodist and had a big role in his team's berth in the Junior College World Series last spring.
The freshman infielder/outfielder batted .333 with 51 hits in 153 at-bats. He collected four doubles and four triples and drove in 33 runs.
White was a two-time All-Lowcountry selection as a safety in football and was all-state his senior year. He also earned All-Lowcountry and all-state honors in baseball.