Sports briefs for August 3rd-9th

17 mins read


AA: Whale Branch ranked 19th in poll

The Whale Branch Early College High School football team is ranked 19th in the High School Sports Report AA Pre-Season Football Rankings.

The HSSR AA Pre-Season Football Rankings are as follows: 1. Abbeville, 2, Barnwell, 3. Cheraw, 4. Saluda, 5. Batesburg-Leesville, 6. Woodland, 7. Central, 8. Lee Central, 9. Blacksburg, 10. Bamberg-Ehrhardt, 11. Carvers Bay, 12. Christ Church, 13. Andrews, 14. Latta, 15. Andrew Jackson, 16. Liberty, 17. Fox Creek, 18. Calhoun County, 19. Whale Branch, 20. Marion. 

The Warriors are slated to host Heritage Academy in a season opener on Aug. 25.

Whale Branch has additional regular-season games scheduled versus May River, Beaufort High, Battery Creek, Bluffton, Woodland, North Charleston, Academic Magnet, Garrett Academy Tech and Burke. 

The Warriors concluded the 2016 season 7-5, reaching the second round of the state playoffs. 

Whale Branch is under the tutelage of head coach Jerry Hatcher.

The Warriors compete in AA, Region 6.

AAAA: Beaufort High listed 20th in rankings 

The Beaufort High School football team is ranked 20th in the High School Sports Report AAAA Pre-Season Football Rankings, which were released earlier in the month. 

The HSSR AAAA Pre-Season Football Rankings are as follows: 1. South Pointe, 2. Hartsville, 3. BHP, 4. Myrtle Beach, 5. Berkeley, 6. Cane Bay, 7. Union County, 8. South Aiken, 9. Greer, 10. North Augusta, 11. Wren, 12. Marlboro County, 13. North Myrtle Beach, 14. Lancaster, 15. AC Flora, 16. Chapin, 17. Daniel, 18. York, 19. Hilton Head, 20. Beaufort. 

Beaufort is set to host Wando for its season opener on Aug. 18. Kickoff for the Beaufort-Wando football game is set for 7:30 p.m.

Additional teams on Beaufort’s 2017 football schedule include Battery Creek, Bluffton, Whale Branch, May River, Stall, Colleton County, Berkeley, Cane Bay and Hilton Head. 

The Eagles, under the direction of veteran head coach Mark Clifford, concluded the 2016 season 8-4 overall and 3-2 (third) in their league after reaching the second round of the state playoffs.

Beaufort High’s junior varsity team finished 9-1 in 2016. 

The Eagles compete in AAAA, Region 8. 


Local instructor brings home prizes

Chuck Elias, head instructor at Club Karate, is shown here with actor Chuck Norris. Photo provided.
Chuck Elias, head instructor at Club Karate, is shown here with actor Chuck Norris. Photo provided.

Club Karate’s head instructor, Chuck Elias, brought home the Norris Cup from a competition in Las Vegas.

The cup is named after Martial Arts legend Chuck Norris. 

While attending the International Training Conference and World Championships in July, Elias won first place in his weight division and went on to defeat the heavyweight and lightweight winners in the younger division to earn the grand championship. 

Elias also won first place in Open Hand Forms and second place and Weapons Forms.  

Club Karate’s only other participant, Rob Gallagher, earned third place in fighting in his perspective weight division.  

Club Karate also had the distinction of seeing one of its students promoted to Master Rank. Carmen Blanchard-Stitt earned her 5th° black belt in a special ceremony. 

Another one of Elias’ black belts, Lindy Woods, and the owner of Dunamis Karate in Ridgeland, had two of her black belts also earn their 5th° black belt. 

This week-long event is highlighted by the three-day tournament. This is attended by martial artists from many different countries including Germany, Brazil, Finland, Canada and Mexico.    

For more information about Club Karate, call 843-252-7283 or go to  


Fishing/diving club to meet Aug. 10

The Beaufort Sportfishing and Diving Club’s August meeting will be held on Thursday, Aug. 10, at the Beaufort Yacht and Sailing Club on Lady’s Island off of Meridian Road. 

The social begins at 6:30 p.m. and the meeting will begin at 7 p.m.  

Kate Parks Schaefer, South Coast Office director of the Coastal Conservation League, will present a brief update on the potential annexation of Bay Point Island by the Town of Hilton Head Island and attempted development.

The main topic will be spade fish. Local Capt. Wally Phinney of Sea Wolf Charters will discuss techniques about locating and landing spade fish.

In related news, youth angler Olivia Gibson Loveless won the monthly $50 weigh-in drawing sponsored by Chris Butler at Butler Marine.

Guests are welcome at the meeting and you do not need a reservation. For additional information, contact Capt. Frank Gibson at 843-522-2122 or email


Wilsons set to take field for Palmetto Prep

Three Beaufort High School graduates – Cameron Wilson, Chris Wilson and Kai Wilson – are preparing to take the field for the Palmetto Preparatory Academy football team. 

Cameron Wilson is a 6-2, 325-pound defensive tackle. 

Chris Wilson is a 6-3, 310-pound offensive guard. 

Kai Wilson is a 6-0, 180-pound strong safety. 

Palmetto Preparatory Academy acts as a post-graduate prep school and a junior college, helping student-athletes get academically qualified and earn scholarships.

A total of 60 players from Palmetto Prep Academy’s 2016 and 2017 classes have received offers to play college football at a four-year program.

Palmetto Prep Academy has sent players to colleges and universities including the University of South Carolina, Troy University, the University of Southern Mississippi, East Carolina University, Georgia Southern University and others. It is a Christian post-graduate and junior college program based out of Columbia, has been in existence since 2011 and was originally founded as Gray Military Academy. 

Palmetto Prep Academy is a member of the East Atlantic Conference, which is also home to Gulf Coast Sports Academy, Birmingham Prep, Alabama Prep Sports and Georgia Prep Sports. 


Forehand signs with rejuvenated Newberry 

Battery Creek High School graduate Gari “GiGi” Forehand has signed with the Newberry College track and field program. 

Forehand finished fourth in the Class AAA discus throw at the state championship meet in Columbia in May. 

In high school, Forehand earned a 3.5 grade-point average and played basketball. Forehand’s prep career also included playing drums for the Dolphin Pride Marching Band. 

Kimour Bruce is the head coach of the Newberry College track and field program. 

Newberry is resurrecting its track program after a lengthy hiatus. The school had previously competed in track for over a decade, primarily in the 1930s, before discontinuing the program following the 1940 season.

Since moving to the NCAA ranks in the early 1990s, Newberry’s only appearance in a track event came in the 2013 Terrier Relays hosted by Wofford in Spartanburg, where a five-member Newberry contingent netted three top-10 finishes in a handful of distance events and the triple jump.

A 12-time All-American and seven-time national champion at Lincoln University in Missouri, Bruce came to Newberry with tremendous track and field credentials. He holds the second-fastest 60-meter dash time in NCAA Indoor Championship history, completing the event in 6.62 seconds in 2011 to defend his title from the previous season, and helped Lincoln to three 4×100-meter relay titles in his four years.

Simmons excels for Coastal Carolina 

Beaufort High School graduate Malcolm Simmons excelled for the Coastal Carolina University men’s track and field team throughout his junior season.

A Beaufort native, Simmons is a productive sprinter for the Coastal Carolina University track team. 

Simmons appeared in nine meets for the Chanticleers during the 2017 season. He opened the season strong, finishing first as part of a 4x400m relay team at the Battle of the Beaches XII with a 3:16.7 performance. Simmons set a personal- and season-best time in the 200m at War Eagle Invitational with a 22.40. He ran a 50.00 in the 400m at Tom Jones Memorial for a personal- and season-best time.

During the 2016 season, Simmons appeared in eight meets for the Chanticleers. He finished sixth in the 200m race at the Big South Triangular, crossing the finish line in 22.60. He ran a season-best 50.25 in the 400m at the Georgia Invitational during the 2016 season.

Coastal Carolina competes in the Big South Conference, along with Campbell, Charleston Southern, Gardner-Webb, High Point, Liberty, Longwood, Presbyterian, Radford, UNC Asheville and Winthrop. 


Wallace heading into junior season

Whale Branch Early College High School graduate Ben Wallace is headed into his junior season with the Queens University of Charlotte men’s soccer program. 

Wallace contributed early in his college career for the Queens University of Charlotte men’s soccer team, playing in three games during the 2015 season. He made seven saves with a save percentage of .778 for the Royals in 2015. 

Wallace thrived throughout his prep career. At Whale Branch High School, Wallace played both soccer and football. He was a four-year MVP and a three-year captain. 

Wallace will look to push for playing time in the 2017 season.

An NCAA Division II men’s soccer program, Queens competes in the South Atlantic Conference, along with Wingate, Tusculum, Lenoir-Rhyne, Catawba, Lincoln Memorial, Coker, Mars Hill, Brevard, Anderson, Carson-Newman and Newberry.   


Garay among top players in freshmen class

Beaufort High School graduate Matt Garay is among the top players for the Catawba Valley Community College men’s basketball program’s incoming freshmen class. 

A 6-8 post player, Garay thrived throughout his senior season for the Beaufort High School boys’ basketball team. 

In addition to Garay, the Catawba Valley Community College freshmen class includes Anthony Anderson (6-5, Wing, Charlotte, NC), William Boyd (6-8, Post, Charlotte, NC), Cameron Edmonson (6-5, Post, Morganton, NC), Isayah Johnson (6-6, Forward, Charlotte, NC), Alex Linberger (5-10, Shooting Guard, Morganton, NC), Tireq Morrow (5-10, Point Guard, Charlotte, NC), Tyrell Oglesbee (5-10, Combo Guard, Inman), Everett Palmer (6-1, Wing, Roxboro, NC), Davis Phillips, 6-4, Wing, Asheville, NC), Jamari Roberts (6-8, Post, Concord, NC), Anthony Salley (6-4, Wing, Charlotte, NC), Elijah Smith (6-3, Wing, Charlotte, NC), Tarique Stowe (5-10, Point Guard, Matthews, NC), Dorieon Suggs (6-4, Forward, Wilson, NC), Marcus Talley (5-10, Combo Guard, Charlotte, NC) and Victor Tshiona (6-6, Forward, Charlotte, NC). 


Daniels, Kaminsky look to lead at Limestone

Battery Creek High School graduates Omar Daniels and Cooper Kaminsky will have an opportunity to compete at the next level when they wrestle for Limestone College later in the year. 

Both Daniels and Kaminsky enjoyed accomplished high school wrestling careers.

Daniels was a four-time state placer, three-time finalist and two-time state champion. He recorded over 200 career wins and broke the Battery Creek wins record. He will compete in the 125/133 class for the Saints. 

Kaminsky was a two-time state champion and recorded over 200 career wins at Battery Creek. He will compete in the heavyweight division for the Saints. 

Beaufort High School graduate DeAndre Johnson is a reigning national champion for the Saints. Johnson won a national title at 157 pounds earlier in the year.  

Limestone finished the 2016-17 season with a 10-3 record overall and a 5-1 mark in league matches. The Saints won the team’s first ECAC Division II Wrestling Championship in just the second year of the conference’s existence.


Murray-Green headed to Savannah State 

Whale Branch High School graduate Ryan Murray-Green is poised to compete for the Savannah State University baseball program. 

A versatile baseball player, Murray-Green played centerfield, first base and pitched for the Warriors. A right-hander, Murray-Green (6-3, 185) excelled throughout his senior season. 

Savannah State competes in the MEAC, which also includes Bethune-Cookman, Coppin State, Delaware State, Florida A&M, Hampton, Howard, Maryland Eastern Shore, Morgan State, Norfolk State, North Carolina A&T, North Carolina Central and South Carolina State. 

Head coach Carlton Hardy guides the Savannah State baseball program. He is in his 12th year with the Tigers. 

In 2013, Hardy led the Savannah State baseball club to its first-ever Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Championship and NCAA regional appearance. SSU was also crowned co-MEAC regular season champion with  a 33-23 overall record and a 17-7 MEAC mark.

Hardy was named the 2013 MEAC Coach of the Year, garnered 2013 MEAC Tournament Outstanding Coach honors and the won the Georgia Dugout Club’s Division I Coach of the Year award.


Y to hold ‘70s theme morning of exercise

Can ya dig it? Boogie over to the Y from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, Aug. 26, for a far out morning sweatin’ in groovy ‘70s disco themed group exercise classes.

There will be kickboxing, Zumba, Poundfit, spin, yoga, Tabata and more. This event is to raise money for the Y annual scholarship campaign. Cyclers should reserve a bike at the front desk prior to Aug. 26.

This event is open to the public. There is a $10 minimum fee to participate and donations are appreciated.

The YMCA of Beaufort County is at 1801 Richmond Ave., Port Royal. 

Call 843-522-9622 or visit

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