Lowco Lowdown – Aug. 28

It’s Monday morning and time for the Lowco Lowdown, a quick snapshot of what happened in local sports last week and what to expect in the week ahead.

This is a speed version before I head in for my civic responsibility of serving jury duty, assuming they will have me.

Here are the hot sports topics of the week:

1. Friday Night Lights. You can pretty much count on high school football occupying the top spot for the next few months, unless there’s a major breaking story. An exciting week of games was highlighted by close contests between county rivals, including a 22-21 Hilton Head Island win at Whale Branch and a 24-16 Bluffton triumph at May River. We have three more Lowco-on-Lowco matchups this week, including a showdown between Bluffton and Beaufort High. Should be fun.

2. Poona Reps The 843. Cool news out of Austin, Texas, this week, as former HHIHS star Poona Ford was named a team captain for the Texas Longhorns. If you haven’t read Seahawks’ coach BJ Payne’s note on Twitter about what that news means to him, check it out. It will put a smile on your face, and perhaps a tear in your eye, to start the week.

3. Volleyball Goes Lowco. If you haven’t noticed, we have some incredible high school volleyball teams in this part of the state. Beaufort High won the Gold Division title at the Colleton Prep tournament over the weekend, handing Beaufort Academy its only loss of the weekend in the semifinals, and Hilton Head Christian Academy rebounded from a loss to BA to win the Silver Division title. HHIHS also showed well at the Nation Ford tournament, placing seventh among 20 powerhouse teams.

4. Cross Country Off And Running. The HHIHS distance running dynasty appears to be alive and well, as the Seahawks put together an impressive performance in their season-opening meet in Charlotte on Saturday. HHIHS junior Sam Gilman won the boys title at the Providence Invitational with a 5K time of 15:45, and the Seahawk boys finished second and the girls third. Bluffton also got off to a strong start, as the girls were third and the boys fourth at the Saucony XC Kickoff Classic in Savannah.

5. Best Wishes, Chip. Longtime Beaufort Academy boys basketball coach Chip Dinkins stepped down last week, citing health concerns after missing most of last season with a torn aorta. Dinkins is one of the really good guys in the world and did a heck of a job at BA, winning a state title in 2006. We wish him well.

Also on the radar: Sand Sharks 1-1 on the pitch … Great debut for BA swimmers … Gus Dean back in top 10.

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