Self-inflicted wounds brought an end to Marlboro County High's hopes in the Class AAAA state playoffs. Lower Richland defeated the Bulldogs 20-14 Friday night in Columbia in the first round to eliminate them from the postseason.
The loss ended a season of missed opportunities as the Bulldogs finish with a 2-9 overall record.
"It all came down to holding on to the football. We played right with them but turnovers will kill you and that was the case here," said Bobby Collins, Marlboro County head coach.
"It was a case of guys just trying to make plays but getting the ball knocked out but it was the difference between winning and losing," he said.
In a preview of things to come, Marlboro County suffered a fumble on their first snap of the game. The turnover gave the Diamond Hornets the ball at midfield.
Lower Richland drove deep into Marlboro County territory, only to turn it over themselves. Skishaun Palmer picked off a LR pass, his sixth interception of the season, near the endzone.
Several local tennis players participated in the S.C. 65+ 3.5 state championship matches held in Hilton Head the weekend of Nov. 1 thru Nov. 4. The team won the state championship. Members of the team have been state runners-up and won six Pee Dee League Championships in various leagues, but this is their first state championship. Team members from Bennettsville are: Bogen Berry, Harry Blackmon, Otis Harrison, John McLaurin, and Jay Owens. From Rockingham, NC.: Mike Rainwater and Gene Stewart: From Chesterfield - Nicky Cohen; and Team Captain Steve Quick from Florence. The team enjoys practicing Wednesdays and Sundays at Quick’s court, supported by their families and friends.
The Garden Gate Garden Club of Bennettsville has chosen the yard of James and Barbara Abraham as their Yard of the Month for November.
The Abrahams live on Talon Drive. Their beautifully landscaped yard features azaleas, palms, pittosporum hedges, pencil holly, and several cactus varieties. Flowers lending seasonal color include canna, celosia, chrysanthemum, impatiens, marigold, petunia, and purple heart.
Barbara is retired from the SC Department of Health and Human Resources and also taught school in McColl. James is retired from the US Army with nearly 30 years of service.
The Garden Gate Garden Club welcomes nominations for its Yard of the Month recognitions. If you would like to nominate a yard, contact any club member.
A run-off election will occur Nov. 19 for District 6 Bennettsville Council race and the sixth seat on the McColl council.
The results of the Nov. 5 elections in Bennettsville and McColl were made official Thursday (Nov. 7) by the Bennettsville Election Commission and the Marlboro County Board of Voter Registration office.
In the District 6 city council race, there was no clear majority for the three candidates. After the certification on Thursday, incumbent Bernice Johnson had 56 votes while challengers Thomas Bennett Jr. had 51 and Gregory Scott Sr., 70.
The top two vote-getters Johnson and Scott will be in the run-off on Nov. 19.
Polls will be open from 7 a.m-7 p.m. with voting taking place at the Marlboro County Courthouse.
While the odds are long, the Bulldogs are in the playoffs.
"It's a new season and anything can happen," said MCHS head coach Bobby Collins.
If nothing else, it gives the youthful Bulldogs one more week of full-pad practice to get ready for a rebound year in 2020.
"If we could eliminate the penalties and turnovers that have killed us all year, we can still be a good team. We can't get behind the chains - our team just isn't built for that. If we could ever have a clean game, I still think we could be pretty solid," said Collins.
He said that the coaching staff has worked to remove as many of the hurdles to success as they can identify.
"We have tried to simplify everything. Many of these are errors of youthfulness, so trying to fix it right now means making it easier to understand," he said.
"We had a really good practice on Monday and the kids are still engaged, so we'll just keep working," said Collins.