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Carolina Academy High School
Lake City

 

Carolina Academy football off to good start

By David Shelton
Senior Writer

Lake City – Veteran head football coach TJ Joye is happy with the way his Carolina Academy team has started the 2018 season, but the coach is far from counting any chickens before they hatch.
The Bobcats hope to be a team that can challenge for a state championship this fall but Joye says its far too early to think in those terms. The focus should be on daily improvement. If that continues, winning will take care of itself.
“We have some things we need to clean up but we certainly are happy to be 5-1,” Joye said. “This is a good bunch of boys. They are a fun group to coach. We’ve been good most of the time but we’ve had our lulls where we didn’t play with focus and we didn’t execute.” 
The Bobcats have won five of their first six games this season, with the lone loss coming to John Paul II. They have recorded wins over Dorchester Academy, Williamsburg Academy, Thomas Sumter Academy and Hilton Head Prep. The loss to John Paul II still stings.
“We were 14-14 at the half and they had a 21-20 lead in the fourth and we just fell apart,” Joye said. “They’re a good team but we feel like we gave that game away. We really lost our focus. It was our game to have a chance to win and we let them take it from us.”
Offensively, the Bobcats have focused on the running game and have used several backs, as well as quarterback Shay Hall, to shoulder the load. With starter Tyson Brand coming back from injury, Joye says Austin Brown and George Wilder performed well. Brand returned for his first start in last week’s 50-28 win over Hilton Head Prep, rushing for 87 yards and three touchdowns. The Bobcats held a 50-8 lead at the half.
“We came out real strong, which was good to see after a long bus ride and a 4:30 kickoff,” Joye said. “I’m real proud of the backs. We’ve used a lot of them and they have performed well. We have some depth there.”
Garrett Morris is working at right tackle while Cody Sauls works on the right side. Mac Timmons is starting at right guard and Kohl Coker starts at left guard, with Graham Follin getting the nod at center.
Middle linebacker Tyrese McCray has been a leader defensively this fall.
The schedule will toughen down the stretch. While the Bobcats may be favored in games against The King’s Academy (October 5) and Dillon Christian (October 19), the matchups with state title contenders Robert E. Lee (October 12) and Pee Dee Academy (October 26) will likely determine Carolina Academy’s playoff fate, at least in terms of seeding.
“We know we have plenty to work on to get ready for the rest of the season,” Joye said. “

Fall Sports Update

The Carolina Academy girls tennis team is hoping to make a run at the state championship this season and is too to a good start. The squad won six of their first eight matches of the regular season, including a 3-0 start in region play.
The team has only one senior – Sophie Askins, who plays doubles. Juniors include Elizabeth Askins (#2 singles) and Ava Palmer (#6 singles) with three freshmen – Lake Killman (doubles), Grace Weaver (#1 singles) and Emma Hunt (#4 singles) – also in the lineup.
Rounding out the squad are eighth-graders Meg McDaniel (#3 singles) and Mary Catherine Cameron (#5 singles).
The volleyball team is counting on senior leadership to help them garner a spot in the state playoff tournament. This year’s team is led by five seniors – Reagan Castles, Lydia Durant, Malery Ward, Maggie Prosser and Emily Alexander.
Juniors Laura Kelly Cook and Madison Lee, along with freshmen Jaimee Epps and Vandi Timmons, round out the 2018 roster.
Working on the girls golf team this fall are Emma Louise Hunt, Hannah Altman, Hannah Palmer and Maggie Hunt.

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