After a sloppy first half, Beaufort High scored 24 unanswered points in the second half Friday to claim a 31-21 victory at Colleton County and clinch the Region 7-4A title.
James Dagin scored two second-half touchdowns, including an eye-popping 44-yard run with 2:48 left to clinch the win, as the Eagles completed their remarkable turnaround from an 0-5 start to a region championship in Bryce Lybrand’s first season as head coach.
“Just really proud of these kids and assistant coaches for sticking with each other when things were hard,” Lybrand said. “Whether it was earlier in the season or tonight, they just keep fighting, and that’s a great life lesson for these kids.”
The Eagles tied it at 7 on Daniel Phares’ 7-yard touchdown pass to Rhogue Wallace in the first quarter, but a pair of first-half turnovers helped Colleton County take a 21-7 halftime lead.
Braden Sarathy’s 20-yard field goal opened the second-half scoring to pull the Eagles within 21-10, and Dagin and Phares each added a third-quarter rushing touchdown to give Beaufort a 24-21 lead going to the fourth.
The Cougars had a chance to tie it but missed a 30-yard field goal try, and Dagin broke away from multiple tackles on his 44-yard scamper to seal the win the region crown.
Beaufort (4-5, 3-0) will host an at-large team to be determined in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs Friday.