Saluda 27 B&L 0

SAFETY- Saluda’s Demond Johnson tackles the Batesburg-Leesville running back in the end zone for a safety in Friday’s 27-0 win over the Panthers. Also pictured are Raquon Harltey (6) and Ashton Parkman (34). (SHS photo by Dean Roesner)

Tigers Blank B&L, 27-0

  Saluda claimed its third win in a row over arch-rival Batesburg-Leesville with a 27-0 victory Fri., Sept. 15, at the Bettis Herlong Stadium at Matthews Field.
  Ironically, the last time the Tigers beat the Panthers three times in a row (1971-73) Bettis Herlong, for whom the stadium is named, was the football coach.
  Prior to the game, Herlong’s family and the family of Dr. T.B. Matthews were recognized at the newly renovated stadium. Herlong led the project to buy stands from the USC stadium and erect them in Saluda, and Dr. Matthews gave the land on which the stadium sits.
  Fans were treated to game that at times put the “u” in “ugly.,” but the Tigers, as they have done several times this year, came to life in the second half to secure their third win of the season.
  Things got off to a terrible start for the Panthers, as their outstanding quarterback Bishop Cannon was injured on the third play of the game. He did not return.
  The Tigers started a modest drive on their first possession. The highlight came when 300-lb. lineman Kalijiha Brown got the snap on a fake punt and ran for the necessary yardage for a first down.
  That drive died, but Ashton Parkman’s punt pinned the Panthers at their own 13-yard-line. A five-yard-penalty was followed by a seven-yard sack to the one-yard-line. Another penalty, this one for a half a yard, set up B&L quarterback Keshoun Williams being tackled in the end zone for a safety. The Tigers led 2-0 with 4:29 to go in the first quarter.
  The safety kick was returned by the Tigers’ Demond Johnson to the Saluda 49.  An 18-yard pass from Noah Bell to tight end Caleb McDaniel was the key play in the 8-play drive. The touchdown came on a 11-yard run by Bell. With regular kicker Francisco Yepez not dressing out for the game, Hunter Blackmon came in to try the extra point and it was blocked. The Tigers led 8-0 with 1:22 to go in the quarter.
  Penalties hurt the Tigers in the second quarter. The biggest infraction came when Bell scored on 15-yard fourth down run. The holding penalty put Saluda back at the 20, and Bell’s fourth down pass fell incomplete.
  The half ended with an 8-0 Saluda lead.
  At the break, the  Panthers had minus-17 yards rushing, two first downs, and 78 yards passing, while the Tigers had just over 100-yards in offense and seven first downs.
  Saluda took control of the game in the third quarter.
  Batesburg-Leesville attempted to catch the Tigers off-guard by trying an onside kick to start the second half. The try failed and Saluda got the ball at the 48.
  This drive belonged to Bell. Two passes to Raquon Hartley got the ball to the 33, where on fourth down Bell ran 13 yards to the 20 and a first down. On the next play, Bell threw to Jay Baker, who ran in for the 20-yard score. Blackmon’s kick was blocked and Saluda led 14-0 with 9:43 to go in the third quarter.
  The Panthers mounted a threat after the kick-off driving all tehe way to the Saluda 22, where Williams fourth down run came up short.
  On first down at the 21, Bell handed off to Kentavius Burton and the speedster broke 48-yards to the Panther 32. He followed this with a 16-yard run to the 16. On the next play, Bell threw to the wide open McDaniel for the score. Blackmon missed the PAT and Saluda led 20-0 with 4:10 to go in the third quarter.
  On the first play of the fourth quarter, Bell’s pass was intercepted at the Saluda 48-yard-line.
  The Tiger defense stopped that threat with 12-yard sack, followed soon by an interception by Cade Gentry.
  From the Saluda 32, the Tigers drove down the field and took time off the clock. The last score of the game came with 32.3 seconds to go in the game on a one-yard run by Burton. Blackmon made the kick, giving Saluda the 27-0 win.
  The Tiger offense finished with 18 first downs and 315 yards in offense, while the defense held the Panthers to five first downs, 26 yards rushing and 116 passing.
  Burton had the best game of his career, rushing for 125-yards on 17 carries. Bell completed 12 of 20 passes for 144 yards. Hartley led the receiving with four catches.
  Along with claimg their third straight win over the Panthers, the Tigers recorded their first shutout over B&L since 1980.
  After playing their first three games on the road, the Tiger’s home opener was successful, and Saluda will be at home for five of the six remaining games.
  Old rival Ninety Six comes to town Friday. The Wildcats won their first game of the year, taking a 23-21 squeaker over Mid-Carolina, a team the Tigers had to rally to beat.
  Kick-off is at 7:30 p.m.

DR. T.B. MATTHEWS FAMILY (SHS Photo by Dean Roesner)

BETTIS G. HERLONG, JR. FAMILY (SHS Photo by Dean Roesner)

Matthews, Herlong Families Recognized

  The families of Dr. T.B.Matthews and Bettis G. Herlong,Jr. were recognized Fri., Sept. 15, at the newly renovated Bettis Herlong Stadium at Matthews Field.
  Dr. Matthews gave the land on which the current stadium sits, and Bettis Herlong, the Hall of Fame football coach, as athletic director led the project to purchase stands that were being removed from what is now Carolina’s Williams-Brice Stadium, and move them to Saluda High and erect what is now the home stands.
  Ironically, on this year’s Saluda Tiger team are Matthew Herlong, the great-great grandson of Dr. Matthews, and Hunter Herlong, the great-grandson of Bettis Herlong. David Warren, also Bettis’ great-grandson, is on the Jayvee team.