Myers steps in for Gruber at Dorchester Academy

Senior Stokes Brownlee will play all over the field this season for Dorchester Academy. (Donny Knight/Donny Knight Photography)

Chris Myers takes over at Dorchester Academy this fall, replacing the winningest coach in SCISA history, Stanley Gruber. Gruber won more than 325 games at Dorchester, and Myers is a former player and graduate of the school.

Aside from a few wrinkles, Myers says little will change at Dorchester this fall.

"We've changed a little but for the most part we're going to be what we've always tried to be," said Myers, who is a former assistant coach at Colleton County. "We want to be a team that runs the football and we want to be strong and aggressive defensively. We know at Dorchester Academy, the kids will come to play. Effort will never be a problem here and we think we can continue to be successful with that type of attitude."

Myers has a handful of starters back on each side of the ball and says there are several new faces out this fall.

"We had a few that have played in the past but did not play last year come back out and that's going to help a lot in terms of numbers," the coach reports.

Offensively, one of the key returners is senior Stokes Brownlee. The 6-3, 205-pound Brownlee started the season at quarterback last fall but moved to receiver near the end of the season. He will be used in a variety of positions this season, according to Myers.

Junior Harley Bozard will be under center this season and gives the Raiders a running threat off the snap. Sharing duties in the running game will be senior Austin Mizzell, junior Brody Taylor and sophomore Jacob Reeves.

Anchoring both lines is senior Reese Smoak, a strong 6-5, 210-pound tackle and end. Senior Cole Cleland will start on the offensive line and works at linebacker on defense. Junior Aron Herman will be a key defender at outside linebacker while Brownlee will work at safety and linebacker.

"I feel like we have a confident, more mature group this season," says Myers. "They seem excited about the season and I feel like we have a great chance to be very competitive."