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Carolina Forest's Mason Garcia rushes as the Panthers beat Cane Bay High School 42-7 in the first round of the 5A playoffs on Thursday. Carolina Forest will play at home next week. Photo by Janet Morgan/janet.morgan@myhorrynews.com

No. 1 Carolina Forest (11-1) at No. 1 Dutch Fork (12-0-1)
Time | 7:30 p.m.
Broadcast | None
Last meeting | First meeting between schools
About the game | Carolina Forest’s defense is going to be tested more than any other game this season - and that includes the Sept. 20 loss against Class 4A No. 1 Myrtle Beach. In Dutch Fork, the Panthers are going to see a one-two punch in quarterback Tyler Olenchuk and running back Jonathan Hall. Olenchuk, a Clemson baseball commitment, has already eclipsed 3,000 passing yards to go along with 39 touchdowns this season. And much like Carolina Forest’s Mason Garcia, he doesn’t make a lot of mistakes; he has throw just three interceptions all season in more than 270 total attempts. And then there’s Hall, a 1,000-yard rusher who has 28 touchdowns of his own so far this fall. They’ve helped the Silver Foxes to the top spot in overall scoring this season, as Tom Knotts’ team is one of just two squads in Class 5A to have topped 600 total points. That is all important because the Dutch Fork defense is just as ferocious and creates tons of short-yardage opportunities. The Silver Foxes have created 25 turnovers this season via interceptions and fumbles, and those are frequently the reason they’re able to put the screws to their opponents early.
 
No. 2 Hartsville (9-3) at No. 1 Myrtle Beach (12-0)
Time | 7:30 p.m.
Broadcast | WYNA-FM, 104.9
Last meeting | Myrtle Beach 42, Hartsville 21 (Oct. 4)
About the game | Over the last month, Xayvion Knox has been as important to Myrtle Beach offense as any other player, and his production has been a huge reason the Seahawks are still playing. His four-game tear — starting with the regular-season finale against North Myrtle Beach — has also been highly noticeable. In those games (two against the Chiefs, the playoff opener against Lakewood and last week’s third-round win over Airport), the senior has rushed for 574 yards and 14 touchdowns. And while a chunk of that was his monster performance against Lakewood, Knox was quietly putting together a pretty solid season before then. After basically not playing on offense in two early games, he has gone on to rush for at least one score in nine consecutive games. His 22 touchdowns on the ground this season are third in the area, and against Hartsville, it’s very likely that he’s going to get opportunities to add to that total. The Seahawks will use him in both direct-snap packages and out of more traditional sets. And the reason is pretty clear. While quarterback Ryan Burger is showing considerable progress, the Red Foxes’ defense has been playing lights out since losing to the Seahawks on Oct. 4 and will be attempting to force the sophomore signal caller into some bad decisions.
 
No. 2 Lake View (9-4) at No. 1 Green Sea Floyds (10-1)
Time | 7:30 p.m. 
Broadcast | WLSC-AM 1240
Last meeting | Green Sea Floyds 42, Lake View 6 (Oct. 18)
About the game | Many of the state’s best Class 1A programs have taken firm aim at Green Sea Floyds since the start of October. There was Baptist Hill, the team that finished the regular season at No. 10 in the state polls. Not long after that, it was Region VI-A foe Lake View, which was No. 7. Come playoff time, after quickly dispatching St. John’s, it was on to what many expected to be a showdown with C.E. Murray, No. 5 in the state heading into the postseason, according to the state’s media pollsters. The Trojans made all of them looked overmatched, winning those games against ranked opponents by an average score of 45-4. So, now it’s on to a lower state finals rematch against Lake View, the last like-sized team to defeat Donnie Kiefer’s team. But this isn’t October of 2018. Behind Jaquan Dixon, Bubba Elliott and A.J. Campbell, Green Sea Floyds has established itself as the king of the lower state field. It would take an epic collapse for the Trojans not to be in Columbia this time next week for the state championship.

Contact Charles D. Perry at 843-488-7236

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