Teams from around the Upstate were in action Friday night in Round Three of the State Playoffs. It essentially is the State Quarterfinal round and now tickets have been punched for the Upper State Title Games in each class.
In 5A- Dutch Fork and Gaffney met for the 3rd straight year in the postseason, Friday night. Dutch Fork won the rubber match between the two stories programs.
The defending state champs will face an upstart challenger. JL Mann of Greenville is having a historic season and downed Hillcrest 21-13 on Friday. Mann is making its 1st ever 5A Upper State Title Game appearance. That game is set for Friday at Dutch Fork. The winner goes to the State Title Game in Orangeburg.
4A- Greenville edged Northwestern Rock Hill avenging a loss to them last year, 42-41. The Red Raiders are making their 3rd straight Upper State Title Game under Coach Greg Porter. Their region mate Westside Anderson downed Midland Valley is an offensive onslaught game, 68-53.
The Rams are making their 1st Upper State Title Game appearance in at least the last two decades (maybe longer couldn't find records further back). The two will meet at Westside in a rematch of the regular season meeting that Westside won 28-14 on September 29th. Greenville will be at Westside this Friday.
Class 3A- Daniel had no trouble at home with Chester downing the Cyclones 49-20. BHP won on the road at Clinton 27-24. Daniel is making its third appearance in Upper State in four seasons. BHP is making its deepest postseason run since 2004. The two unbeaten squads will clash at Daniel on Friday.
In 2A the collision course the two teams were on will now meet at the crossroads, so to speak. Abbeville downed Silver Bluff 16-6 and will meet Gray Collegiate who clipped Strom Thurmond. It's the 4th postseason meeting between the two powerhouse programs in the last 5 years. Abbeville is 2-1 in the previous three meetings. The defending State Champs are at Gray Collegiate on Friday.
Class 1A will be an all Greenville Upper State Final. Defending State Champs Christ Church dispatched of Blackville-Hilda 27-7. St. Joe's downed Southside Christian 27-14. The Knights will be at Christ Church, the Cavs took the regular season region matchup 35-21. It's the 2nd straight Upper State trip for St. Joe's in 3 seasons under Chris Goodman. Friday night at Christ Church will mark the 2nd straight year the two rivals will meet for the Upper State Title. The Knights are 0-5 against Christ Church in Goodman's tenure.