Riding a 62-game unbeaten streak, the Silver Foxes of Dutch Fork (Irmo, S.C.) don’t have many scores to settle. But they’ll go after a little long-term vengeance Saturday when they take on unbeaten Gaffney for the South Carolina High School League 5A state title Saturday at Charlie W. Johnson Stadium in Columbia.
How to watch
When: Saturday, Dec. 4, 5 p.m. ET
Where: Charlie W. Johnson Stadium, Columbia S.C.
Live streaming: Watch Free Here
The only time the team’s have met since 2004 was a 34-22 Gaffney victory for the state 4A-1 title in 2012, when quarterback Shaq Davidson accounted for 260 yards and four touchdowns for the winners.
Dutch Fork goes for its sixth consecutive 5A crown Saturday and has not lost a playoff game since 2015. The Silver Foxes, under Tom Knotts, also have a 61-0-1 record over the last five seasons.
This season, the 13-0 Foxes have outscored opponents 681-149, having scored more than 50 points seven times, at least 60 three times, with a season-high of 70 in a season-open 70-8 victory over Wren. It was a sign of things to come.
They are led by the speedy and shifty 5-foot-11, 185-pound junior tailback Jarvis Green, who has carried the 184 times for 1,609 yards and 35 touchdowns. With senior quarterback Davin Patterson (151-of-208 passing, 2,679 yards, 30 touchdowns) also a running threat (409 yards, eight touchdowns), the Silver Foxes are a nightmare to try to slow down. They average 484 yards per game almost evenly divided between the run (269 yards per game) and pass (225).
Patterson’s top target is the team’s top recruit, 6-0, 180-pound wide receiver Antonio Williams (73 catches, 1,470 yards, 14 touchdowns), an All-America candidate who has 27 offers including Clemson and Auburn. Williams had four catches for 129 yards and a touchdown last week in the team’s biggest challenge of the year, a 21-14 semifinal win at Fort Dorchester.
Dutch Fork will have even a bigger challenge against a Gaffney team that has outscored foes 528-233. The Indians have had a few scares in the playoffs, opening with a 34-26 home win over Hanna followed by a 16-13 overtime win at Northwestern.
Last week, Gaffney (14-0) got back on offensive track with a 56-31 win over Spartanburg behind four touchdown pass from Grayson Loftis (15 of 21, 256 yards) and three touchdown runs by Tyler Smith (18 carries, 171 yards). Smith (1,514 yards, 29 touchdowns) and Ken Littlejohn (1,232 yards, 12 TDs) are 1,000-yard rushers and Loftis has thrown for more than 1,900 yards and 19 touchdowns. Linebacker BrayShawn Littlejohn leads the team in tackles with 82.
The Silver Foxes have a pair of formidable linebackers themselves in CJ Wicker (122 tackles, nine sacks) and Chandler Perry (121 tackles, 13 for loss).