In Greenville County football history, the number of times JL Mann has started 3-0 and Greenville High has started 0-3 in the same season is not a common occurrence, especially in recent years.
Well, that’s what happened to start this season.
Greenville has one of the toughest out-of-region schedules in Class AAAA. But the Red Raiders haven’t won so far. Berea, Southside, Eastside, Greer and Travelers Rest earned their first wins this week.
Here are the takeaways from the week 2 high school football games:
Of all the early victories, which was the most impressive?
The answer here is Travelers Rest vs. Palmetto. The Mustangs beat Class AAAAA Woodmont to open their season. And while a 50-14 loss to Seneca didn’t spell greatness, Palmetto isn’t a pushover.
The Devildogs went to the road and beat them up. And by two digits. Travelers Rest gave trainer Michael Lancaster his first win and now TR is 1-2. Travelers Rest needed a win to get going and turn the corner, the Devildogs could have done it.
TR is entering a region with Chapman, Broome, Carolina Academy and Blue Ridge. Only one of those teams has a winning record: Blue Ridge. Lancaster and his team could still win that region if things work out.
Hillcrest’s Avery McFadden is special
Avery McFadden has proven to be among the best wide receivers in the state for the past nine months. He blew up last year with an all-state season as a sophomore and already has five total touchdowns (four received, one kickoff return) in three games.
Hillcrest remained undefeated with a 19-14 win over Clover, fueled by McFadden’s 90-yard kickoff return for a second-quarter touchdown.
Now he has an offer from Coastal Carolina, according to his Twitter account. It seems that the collegiate coaches are beginning to see what many have around here.
Blue Ridge, Greer says a lot about both
Blue Ridge fell to 2-1 with the Week 2 loss to Greer. The Yellow Jackets (1-2) got back on track with a resounding 56-20 victory against the Class AAA Tigers.
The game said a lot about both. Blue Ridge was 2-0, but still struggled with a bigger rank and a talented team like Greer. Greer was able to pick up a confidence-building win that puts him at 1-2, with the region’s title still far ahead.
Riverside (1-2) and Laurens (0-2) lost. The region title still looks like anyone can win it.
Rounding: Greenville area high school football recap, Week 2: Berea, Eastside, Greer all win games
For subscribers: Thomas Williams can take the football to Powdersville. He now he is motivated to win a state title.
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Carolina remains competitive in 2022
One thing Carolina Academy coach Chris Glover has been able to do this season is keep the Trojans in games.
Carolina ended a 21-game losing streak with a win against West-Oak in Week 1. And the Trojans engaged in a boat race with Berea at home on Friday, but ultimately lost 41-30.
If there’s one thing we’ve seen from Carolina, it’s that they’ll stay in games this season. Glover is starting to get Carolina back on the path of consistency.
JL Mann shows how good he is in win at Woodruff
Without a doubt, JL Mann will improve this season. Anyone who watched Mann last year and then watched what transpired during the offseason probably won’t be surprised by Mann’s 3-0 start.
Quarterback Ethan Anderson returned from a knee injury, delivering an offense that struggled against a leader. The Pats came back with a variety of super-talented slick players. And the defense returned its best players from the forward seven.
Everything pointed to an improvement in the win column, and that’s exactly what Mann appears to be doing. The Patriots held a 2-0 Woodruff team just three points down the road. That’s nothing to scoff at.
Mann could be pretty good. But only when the Pats get into regional play will we see if they can make it to the postseason.
Joe Dandron covers high school sports for The Greenville News. Contact him at 864-415-6213 or by email at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter: @JoeMDandron.