Bengals Bounce Blazers, Nab Playoff Spot

Osei Thomas heads for the end zone. (Photo/Rodney Williams)

BHS-36, RVHS-0

BLYTHEWOOD – The Blythewood Bengals (5-6, 3-2) clinched the final automatic bid to the Class 4A/Division 2 state playoffs Friday night by cementing third place in Region IV-4A with a 36-0 thrashing of the Ridge View Blazers.

Osei Thomas repeatedly gashed the Blazers’ front seven in the first quarter as he spotted the Bengals a 22-0 lead with scoring runs of 6, 1 and 53 yards.

“We did real well in the first quarter and we were doing what we wanted,” Blythewood head coach Dan Morgan said after the game. “I think we kind of surprised everybody because we came out and ran the ball. I think our run game has come a long way in the last few weeks.”

On his first six carries, Thomas racked up 111 yards. Following a stellar performance that came up just 36 yards shy of the single game school record owned by Brandon Wilds’ 221 yard performance in 2009, Morgan was proud to see Thomas’ breakout performance.

“We’ve solidified things a little more and Osei is becoming a better runner and seeing the holes better,” Morgan said. “We’ve known all year that sooner or later he’d become the man for our program when it comes to toting the rock. He’s grown up so much in the past few weeks.”

Thomas carried the ball just once in the second, but still lit up the Blazers for 216 total yards (185 rushing, 31 receiving) and four touchdowns. As a unit, the Bengals’ offense played nearly flawlessly in the first half and established a 29-0 advantage. Blythewood did not commit a turnover, finished four of five in the red zone and only punted once in the first half.

In relief of Thomas, freshman running back Kyle Wright caught a 10-yard swing pass from David Isreal in the third quarter to cap the scoring as the Bengals corralled the Blazers 36-0.

Blythewood’s defense allowed just 2.4 yards per carry and continually got off the field on third down – the Blazers only converted one of their 12 third-down attempts. The defense pitched a shutout without their all-star linebacker, Hassan Belton, in the lineup.

“I was real proud of our defense,” Morgan said. “The great thing about our team right now is that they feed off one another.”

Morgan told The Voice he hopes the Shrine Bowl selection, Belton, will be back on the field for Friday’s playoff game after missing the past few weeks due to an injury, although Belton is still listed as questionable.

“(Belton) says yes, but we’ll evaluate as we go, the timeline has him coming back around that time,” Morgan said.

Blythewood will travel to South Florence Friday to face the two-seeded Bruins for their first round matchup.

South Florence (10-1, 5-0) is the Region VI-4A champ and has won 10 games in a row including last week’s 31-21 win over West Florence.

The Bengals fell to the Bruins earlier this season by a score of 38-13 on Oct. 2.

Fans can follow live game updates on The Independent Voice’s Facebook page and can check for a full version of the 4A state playoff brackets.


RV: 0-0-0-0 – 0

BH: 22-7-7-0 –36


First Quarter

BH – Osei Thomas 6 run (Tucker Smith kick). 9:27

BH – Osei Thomas 1 run (Tucker Smith kick). 7:01

BH – Osei Thomas 53 run (Jordyn Adams pass to Zavion Holmes). 1:06

Second Quarter

BH – Osei Thomas 12 pass from David Isreal (Tucker Smith kick). 1:07

Third Quarter

BH – Kyle Wright 10 pass from David Isreal (Tucker Smith kick). 7:45

Team Stats

BH                           RV

First Downs                           21                             14

Rushes/Yards                     43-205                      43-107

Passing Yards                     159                              100

C-A-INT                               13-23-0                     9-19-1

Fumbles/Lost                     1-0                             5-4

Penalties/Yards                3-19                          4-32

Third downs                        3-10                        1-12

Fourth downs                     0-1                          2-5

Individual Stats

RUSHING: BH – Osei Thomas 16-185, Kyle Wright 10-34, Jaydon Brunson 2-11.  RV – A. Kelly 13-97, D. Dantzler 4-28, D. Warren 7-22, R. Brown 3-12.

RECEIVING: BH – Eric Weber 5-74, Joe Richardson 3-30, Osei Thomas 2-31, Kyle Wright 1-10.  RV – T. Wilson 4-45, Reaster-Glover 4-40, J. Smith 1-15.

PASSING: BH – David Isreal 13-23, 159 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT.  LE – Tre High 9-19, 100 yards, 0 TD 1 INT.

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