HSFB: LowcoSports Game of the Week – May River at Hilton Head High

For the third consecutive week, the LowcoSports Game of the Week is a Lowco-on-Lowco matchup, and for the second week in a row, it’s a battle of undefeated teams.

Upstart May River travels to Hilton Head High tonight for a matchup of perhaps unlikely 3-0 teams, considering neither had a winning record last season.

Both the Sharks and Seahawks have shown that the past is irrelevant in dominant starts, as Hilton Head High has pummeled its first three opponents by an average of 28 points and May River has routed its foes by an average of three touchdowns.

Something has to give tonight, as two explosive offenses go up against a pair of stingy defenses in what is also the WHHI Covert Aire Bowl Series matchup, dubbed the Highway 278 Bowl, and will be televised on tape-delay and aired live on Facebook.

Let’s break down the matchup:

May River LowcoSports
Game of the Week
Hilton Head High
3-0 Record 3-0
32.0 Scoring Offense 34.7
11.3 Scoring Defense 6.7
+5 Turnover Margin +3

 

PLAYERS TO WATCH

When Hilton Head High has the ball:

• HHIHS QB Gaston Moore: The reigning RBC Heritage Player of the Week is averaging nearly 275 passing yards per game, but he might not have as much time in the pocket against a strong Sharks defensive front. He also might be without a couple of his top targets, as the Seahawks are a bit banged up.

• May River DL T.J. Polite-Grant: Polite-Grant had a huge game against Whale Branch and has been wreaking havoc in opposing backfields with four tackles for loss and two sacks. If he can put pressure on Moore and keep him from scanning the field for open receivers, the Sharks’ defense will have a good night.

When May River has the ball:

• May River QB Ahmad Green: Green has been everything the Sharks could ask for in a quarterback through three games, averaging more than 90 yards per game on the ground and hitting his share of big plays through the air without an interception. The Seahawks’ secondary is salty, though, so Green will need to be on top of his game to keep the offense running smoothly.

• HHIHS DB Cole DeMarzo: The sophomore safety has been the anchor of the secondary, averaging 7.7 tackles per game with a team-high seven pass break-ups. He will also be the last line of defense to prevent big plays in the run game when Green or running back Brandon Morales get free, and bringing them down with minimal damage will be a major key for the Seahawks.

KEYS TO THE GAME

1. Limit the damage. Both teams have thrived on big plays as they’ve put up big offensive numbers to start the season. The defense that can contain explosive plays will have the edge.

2. Spread ‘em out. May River’s front seven is strong, but the Seahawks have some dangerous players who can hurt them on the edges. Hilton Head needs to get the ball to the outside of the field and let its athletes try to make plays in the open field to have a chance to stay undefeated.

3. Wear ‘em down. One major edge the Sharks will have is in the size of their roster, especially with several Seahawk starters out with injuries. May River needs to control the ball with its run game and use its size in the trenches to wear down the Seahawks and take control in the fourth quarter.

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