LEXINGTON AT NORTH AUGUSTA
RECORDS: Lexington 3-0, North Augusta 2-0
KEY PLAYERS: Lexington-Sr. QB Chase Crouch, Jr. RB Jordan Hiller, Jr. LB Logan Cripe. North Augusta-Sr. QB Landon Washington, Sr. WR/DB DeJuan Bell, Sr. RB Derius Gibson
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: This game has a history of being close and high scoring, and the two proud programs are continuing the exciting series in nonregion form. No. 5 North Augusta’s focus will likely be on Crouch, a multi-year starter under center who can do it all. The Yellow Jackets need their trio of playmakers to step up in this big game.
HARLEM AT GREENBRIER
RECORDS: Harlem 2-0, Greenbrier 2-0
KEY PLAYERS: Harlem-Sr. OL Waylin Bell, Jr. RB A.J. Brown, Sr. LB Brendan Maddox. Greenbrier-Sr. OL Eric Chatman, Jr. RB J.Q. Brown, Sr. DE Tarael Hooks
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: There’s plenty of excitement surrounding both these programs early in the season. Harlem has a nice group of athletes on the roster this year, led by the speedy Brown, while Greenbrier has its own talented rusher named Brown. Each is guided by one of the top offensive linemen in the area. The Wolfpack own the all-time series at 5-0.
JEFFERSON COUNTY AT WASHINGTON-WILKES
RECORDS: Jefferson County 2-0, Washington-Wilkes 1-1
KEY PLAYERS: Jefferson County-Sr. K Evans Hodges, Sr. QB C.J. Hales, Sr. WR Ty King. Washington-Wilkes-Jr. WR Deondre Lester, Soph. QB Donovan Anthony, Sr. DE Devonta Owens
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: Washington-Wilkes has a tough nonregion slate and this is one of the stiffer tests. No. 6 Jefferson County graduated plenty from a year ago but is still high powered on offense, featuring two talented quarterbacks and a stable of receivers along with one of the area’s best kickers. The Tigers will need to establish their ground game and do whatever they can to slow down the Warriors.
BURKE COUNTY AT LAKESIDE
RECORDS: Burke County 3-0, Lakeside 0-2
KEY PLAYERS: Burke County-Sr. OL Austin Milner, Sr. LB Tyreke Washington, Sr. QB Bill Knight. Lakeside-Sr. WR Graham Tulowitzky, Sr. DL Carlos Carter, Jr. QB Will Childers
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: The Burke County train is officially on the tracks after racking up more than 600 rushing yards last week. The ninth-ranked Bears have scored a combined 125 points in their first three games, led by a power spread attack that allows a list of athletes to touch the ball at any given time. Lakeside will have its hands full stopping it, but the Panthers schedule these tough nonregion games for a reason.
WESTSIDE (S.C.) AT SOUTH AIKEN
RECORDS: Westside 2-1, South Aiken 2-1
KEY PLAYERS: Westside-Jr. RB Paul Johnson, Sr. DL Nick Hampton, Jr. DB Kendarius Fant-Miles. South Aiken-Sr. RB Chris Roberts, Sr. WR/DB Deshun Kitchings, Sr. LB Reid Bolen
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: No. 6 South Aiken surely has last season’s meeting on the mind, when Westside, out of Anderson, S.C., ran away with a 42-7 victory at home for South Aiken’s only loss until the state semifinals. The Thoroughbreds are coming off a 51-0 romp of Swansea as an answer to their upset loss to White Knoll, and this game could answer whether the pieces are now in place for another run.