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Abbeville High School

 

Abbeville continues to dominate the competition

By C.R. Cumbee
Staff Writer

Abbeville—The A-train is already on a roll and it doesn’t look like anything or anyone will slow it down anytime soon.  
Abbeville has continued to dominate its opponents this season, going a perfect 5-0 through the first half of the regular season.  Only once have they even been tested past the third quarter and they have outscored their opponents, 256-52.
“We had the long layoff where we had the bye week and didn’t get to play at Hartsville.  I thought we came out last week ready to play,” said Abbeville head coach Jamie Nickles.  “I was real pleased with our effort against Batesburg-Leesville.  Now we’re getting into the meat of our region schedule where we’re playing for something.”
The Panthers can take another step towards that conference title when they travel to Fox Creek on Thursday, Oct. 4.  The game was moved up a day because of a country music concert.
“We adjusted our practice schedule accordingly.  They’re a high-powered offense and score a lot of points so we need to hold the ball and limit their possessions.  We’ve got to get our A-bone attack going.  It’s the first time we’ve ever played these guys so it will be interesting to see how good they are against our run-heavy offense,” Nickles said.
Abbeville hasn’t missed a beat with a new quarterback in the huddle this season.  JD Moore, who quarterbacked the jayvee team before seeing action at defensive back on the varsity squad last year, is an all-around athlete that can stress defenses in multiple ways.
“He’s got a special skill set.  He’s fast enough to take it to the house and he’s really improved on his passing.  So far, so good.  He’s definitely a dual-threat quarterback,” Nickles said.
The offensive line has done well, according to Nickles, with Trai Jones, Connor Nickles, Jake Hill and DeMichael Johnson all experienced veterans. 
“We still have a lot of room for improvement in all three phases of the game.  Offensively, I think we’re right where we want to be,” said Nickles.  
The Panthers defense posted a pair of shutouts while limiting Batesburg-Leesville to only seven points.  That unit has plenty of youth, but they continue to develop and get better every week.
“We’ve been stout against the run and our pass defense is improving.  We’ve made teams one-dimensional by taking the run away from them so we can really focus in on our pass defense.  That’s been the big key to us defensively,” Nickles said.
One group that caught the attention of the coaches was the linebackers.  Cruz Temple, Tyreke Campbell, Joc Norman and Luke Evans haven’t been overwhelmed by the moment and should continue to progress moving forward.
“Our linebackers are getting better.  I would have loved to see what they could have done against Hartsville,” said Nickles.
Abbeville will have a tough stretch to close out the regular season, going to Saluda before hosting Ninety Six.  Those two teams are a combined 10-2 this fall, with the latter a spotless 6-0 record.

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