Bengals fall to Lexington

BLYTHEWOOD – The Blythewood football team looked to match up well with Lexington by the time first-year head coach Dustin Curtis brought the Wildcats to town Friday night.

Bengals head coach James Martin, fresh from retaining the Axe after a victory over Westwood, where Curtis coached until taking the head job at A.C. Flora in 2019, figured the Blythewood defensive line would make some big stops and Harrison Collins’ arm and his receivers would yield a few scores.

Friday night’s result at District Two Stadium didn’t work out that way. Lexington knocked out a wire-to-wire 32-7 victory over Blythewood.

“They were way better than we were,” Blythewood head coach James Martin said. “I make no excuses. We have a lot of young kids playing right now, and they’re learning to play football. They’re going to get there, but tonight, hat’s off to Lexington, they had a great plan.”

In a game where the Wildcats (4-0) enjoyed great field possession throughout, quarterback Taiden Mines was 11-for-16 in passing for 178 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions.

Cam Morris rushed 11 times for just 54 yards but scored the game’s first two touchdowns on short runs.

Mines’ passing and Morris’ timely rushes enabled the Wildcats to get past Blythewood’s fearsome defensive front.

“They have some really, really good athletes over there. I was pretty nervous about this game all week,” first year head coach Dustin Curtis said. “They and West Florence have tremendous defensive fronts and Blythewood made us complete some passes and fortunately we did.

Curtis added that Mines and receiver Brandon Cromer, who had five catches for 100 yards and two touchdowns, were instrumental.
“Brandon Cromer had a heck of a game, and Taiden did as well in throwing the ball,” Curtis said. “They (the Bengals) played a lot of cover zero and were forcing the ball in the air. Fortunately we were able to hold up protection-wise and were able to make some plays.”

Lexington went up 14-0 by first quarter’s end, getting the two rushing scores from Morris and a Taiden Mines-to-Noah McClary 2-point conversion pass. 

Lexington placekicker Tyler Chavis made good on a 41-yard field goal attempt at the 8:32 mark of the second quarter. Just before the half, Mines connected with Brandon Cromer for a 17-yard TD pass, and again to Tyler DiRienzo for another 2-point conversion to make it 25-0.

Blythewood’s first half was more of a mess than a mission. Harrison Collins’ first pass attempt was an interception to Lexington defender Duke Cleary, which led to Morris’ first touchdown on a 4-yard run that capped a 55-yard drive.

The rest of the Bengals’ possessions ended with punts.

Blythewood’s best chance for an offensive score came in the second quarter. The Bengals drove from their own 15-yard line to the Lexington 27 with much of their offense coming on runs of 6-12 yards. A holding penalty knocked out a pass play that drew them inside the 20-yard line. After that miscue came a false start, a sack and a 10-yard loss from Jose Haro, and a second false start.

Those errors put them back on their own 41-yard line and forced a punt.

Lexington opened the second half with a quick drive that Mines capped with another touchdown pass to Cromer, this one for 36 yards, to make it 32-0.

The Wildcats held the Bengals to 99 yards rushing on 27 attempts.

“I felt like their team speed was an advantage over us but we did feel like we could play well in the box,” Curtis said. “It’s hard to beat somebody if you can’t run, and we did a great job stopping the run. I’m really proud of Coach (Alex) Lusk (defensive coordinator) and the way he prepared the defense. We showed some looks that we haven’t done before and that paid off big for us.”

Blythewood avoided a shutout when Zarian Williams recovered a Lexington fumble at the Wildcat 15-yard line and ran it in for a score in the 4:05 mark of the third quarter.

From there both teams inched the ball along and punted six times.

Lexington is at Gilbert (3-0, beat Pelion 55-9) and Blythewood plays host to Goose Creek (0-3, lost 32-25 to Beaufort) Friday.

Lexington – 14-11-7-0 – 32

Blythewood – 0-0-7-0 – 7

First Quarter

L – Cam Morris 4 run (kick failed) 8:30

L – Morris 5 run (Noah McClary pass from Taiden Mines) :12

Second Quarter

L – Tyler Chavis 41-yard field goal 8:32

L -Brandon Cromer 17 pass from Mines (Tyler DiRienzo pass from Mines) :27

Third Quarter

L -Cromer 36 pass from Mines (Chavis kick) 9:26

B – Zarian Williams 15 fumble return (Ashton Davis kick) 4:05 

                                                LHS                BHS

First downs                          15                   10

Rushes-Yards                     35-116          27-99

Passing yards                      178                 50

Att-Com-Int                        11-16-0        10-20-2

Fumbles-lost                       1-1                 0-0

Penalties-yards                  6-55               11-85

Punts-Avg                           5-40.6           8-34.9



L-Cam Morris 11-54, Taiden Mines 7-16, Torrie Jones 6-9, Toby Sobieralski 8-34, Jonathan Rolland 1-3, Ethan VanHouten 1-(-1), Jack Cooper 1-1. B-Chase Brown 6-27, Harrison Collins 5-8, Christopher Thomas 4-18, Zahir Jones 3-5, Kaleb Kelly 2-20, Nate Rabon 1-17, Traveze Benefield 2-1, Aiden Winder 1-(-1), Team 2-4.


L-Taiden Mines 10-15-0, Noah McClary 0-1-0. B-Harrison Collins 10-18-2, Traveze Benefield 0-2-0.


L-Brandon Cromer 4-100, Zareth Owens 2-34, Lincoln Hill 2-23, Tyler DeRienzo 1-7, Cam Morris 1-(-6), Garrett Gallaher 1-11. B-Nate Rabon 4-13, Kanye Reed 2-12, Aiden Winder 2-12, Zahir Jones 1-4, Christopher Thomas 1-9.

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