Blythewood takes out RNE 35-18

COLUMBIA – The Blythewood football team’s no-huddle offense is still a work in progress—some pass drops, some overthrown passes, and a few big-play successes.

With that said, the Bengals found their rushing attack in a big way in a 35-18 victory at Richland Northeast.

Blythewood’s ground attack, which mustered 14 net yards in a season-opening loss to Ridge View, scored three touchdowns. Zahir Jones racked up 132 yards on 11 carries in the second half alone to wear down the Cavaliers.

Add to that rushing success Harrison Collins’ night. Collins threw for 183 yards and two touchdowns, and Blythewood scored a convincing win over an up-and-coming RNE team.

It was the first win for James Martin as Blythewood’s head coach.

“We ran more in this one than we did the last one,” Martin said. “They gave us more ability to run the ball and we took advantage of what they gave us. Fortunately, we had more points than they did, and I’m proud that we won. Anytime you win is a great feeling, but we’ve still got to clean up some things.”

Blythewood showed improvement in the passing game as Collins distributed the football to 10 receivers, but 13 penalties for 125 yards ate into what could have been a complete game.

The season-opening loss to Ridge View, a 32-21 defeat that included three long drives that died out deep in Ridge View territory, must have weighed heavy on Blythewood players and coaches going into Friday’s game.

Noting last week’s performance, Blythewood came out aggressively, working the ball down to the Richland Northeast 11-yard line. Then came a sudden reminder of how a costly mistake can derail a drive. Collins took a snap on second-and-four and fired the ball directly into the hands of Cavaliers defender Enosh-Phillippe-Jean.

This time the Bengals shook that mistake off. The defense held RNE to a 3-and-out and the offense got the ball back on the Cavaliers 30-yard line.

Three plays later Collins himself ran the ball in from two yards out for the first score. 

On the next possession the Bengals knocked out a 15-play, 64-yard drive that Quentin Solomon capped with a 2-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter to make it 14-0. 

Collins found Nate Rabon for a 20-yard touchdown pass at the 5:48 mark of the second quarter to make it 21-0.

RNE quarterback Wiliam Wilson, who at one time had five straight carries for negative yardage, finally broke free for a 39-yard touchdown run with 4:10 left in the second quarter for RNE’s only score of the first half. 

Up 21-6 at intermission, Blythewood went on two long scoring drives.

The first was an 82-yarder that Collins finished out with a 21-yard TD pass to Desmond Macklin.

After Blythewood forced a fumble that stopped a potential score, the offense took over at their own 11-yard line and went 89 yards. Ed Robinson finished that drive with a 1-yard touchdown at the 10:57 mark of the fourth quarter.

“I thought we did a really good job of blocking,” Martin said. “Our offensive line deserves a lot of credit for what they did tonight.”

RNE’s James Willingham later scored from four yards out, and Wilson connected with Willingham on a 45-yard touchdown pass to cut into Blythewood’s lead. But by that time the Bengals had the game well in hand.

Richland Northeast plays host to Keenan Thursday.

Blythewood is at crosstown rival Westwood Friday as the teams renew the Battle for The Axe. The Bengals beat the Redhawks 53-8 last year to claim the axe from Westwood, which won it in 2019. The game was not played in 2020 and 2021 because of Covid. 

This year Westwood looks to take it back. The Redhawks (1-1) are coming off a heartbreaking loss at Lower Richland. The Diamond Hornets made a lightning-quick length-of-the-field drive to win 24-21 over the Redhawks.

Knowing the mental mistakes that the Bengals need to clean up, Martin said the Bengals will be ready.
“The Battle for the Axe is an important game for our community,” Martin said. “It’s going to be an intense game, and if we don’t clean up our game we’ll be in a dogfight.”

Blythewood  – 7-14-7-7 – 35

RIchland Northeast – 0-6-0-12 – 18

First Quarter

B – Harrison Collins 2 run (Kyle Whisenant kick) 4:53

Second Quarter

B – Quentin Solomon 2 run (Whisenant kick) 10:22

B – Nate Rabon 20 pass from Collins (Whisenant kick) 5:41

R – William Wilson 39 run (kick blocked) 4:10

Third Quarter

B – Desmond Macklin 21 pass from Collins (Whisenant kick) 8:09 

Fourth Quarter

B -Ed Robinson 1 run (Whisenant kick) 10:57 

R – James Willingham 4 run (run failed) 6:54

R – Willingham 45 pass from Wilson (pass failed) 3:41

                                                BHS                                       RNE

First downs                          28                   15

Rushes-Yards                     36-247          25-135

Passing yards                      184                 133

Att-Com-Int                        34-23-1        27-11-0

Fumbles-lost                       1-0                 1-1

Penalties-yards                  13-125          10-65

Punts-Avg                           2-42.0           3-31.7


B-Zahir Jones 11-132, Desmond Macklin 7-40, Quentin Solomon 8-42, Harrison Collins 5-14, Traveze Benefield 4-18, Deandre Williams 1-0, Ed Robinson 1-1 0. R-William Wilson 15-87, James Willingham 7-29, Harvin Denis 2-19.


B-Harrison Collins 22-33-1, Traveze Benefield 1-1-0. R-William Wilson 11-27-0.


B-Kaleb Kelly 5-34, Desmond Macklin 4-26, Kanye Reed 3-37, Trent Lewis 2-19, Quentin Solomon 2-10, Nate Rabon 1-20, Chris Thomas 1-10, Jaylin Tyler 1-6, Team 1-7. R-Blake Bettette 3-28, Enosh-Phillippe-Jean 4-51, James Willingham 3-54, Dillon Hughy 1-10.

Contact us: (803) 767-5711 | P.O. Box 675, Blythewood, SC 29016 | [email protected]