Cycs take second in Chester High 7-on-7 Invitational

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By Travis Jenkins

They’ve climbed high enough to see the other side, but Chester Coach Victor Floyd said his team still isn’t quite over the hump.

The Chester Cyclones hosted a multi-team 7-on-7 contest for the first time Friday. Aside from West Charlotte pulling out the night before and the threat of severe weather pushing the schedule up a bit, Floyd said he was pleased with how things went.

“We had a little bit of rain to contend with, but everything worked out,” Floyd said.

Starting just after 9 a.m., games were taking place in Chester’s stadium, on the practice field adjacent the stadium and on the old baseball field behind the student parking lot.

As is usually the case in 7-on-7 contests, teams were awarded points for holding an opponent without a score on a possession (two points), for intercepting a pass (three points) and for throwing a touchdown pass (six points, with the option to go for one or two after a score). Chester opened up with a 34-3 blowout win over Aiken. They followed with victories over the Orangeburg-Wilkinson B team, Darlington, Lewisville, Hunter Huss and Rock Hill. The Cyclones were the only team to go undefeated in pool play and earned a first-round bye. In the semifinals, Chester defeated Darlington for the second time on the day (28-8), setting up another game against Rock Hill for the title. Floyd had some simple, straightforward advice for his team.

“Finish,” he said.

The Cyclones had played well in two previous multi-team 7-on-7s this summer, but finished as the runner-up at Irmo’s tournament and at the Will Muschamp 7-on-7 tournament. Floyd said on both occasions his team had played well all day…right up until the finals.

“We can’t quite get over the hump,” he said.

Unfortunately, the Cyclones got in a big early hole and lost in the finals to the Bearcats. One of the stumbling blocks was the loss of John Erby before tournament play started. Erby, who played both wide receiver and quarterback Friday, had to come off the field because of dehydration issues.

“I knew that would make it a little tougher for us,” Floyd said.

Still, Chester has now played in three tournaments and has been one of the last two teams standing in each.

Lewisville Coach Will Mitchell said he knew when he scheduled the tournament that it would be tough on his team. They were coming off another tournament the day before and were playing in their third event in a week.

“We just played out 14th game since yesterday,” Mitchell said after his team lost in the second round of tournament play to Irmo. “We’ve played 26 games in eight days. You could tell by the end that we were a little friend.”

The Lions picked up wins over Irmo, Darlington and Aiken on the day; three opponents that are considerably larger than Lewisville. In terms of getting new quarterback Rhett Cox and some other new starters work against quality opponents, Mitchell said the day was successful.

“You have to step back, look and say we got what we wanted out of this,” Mitchell said.

Both Chester and Lewisville are off this week. The Cyclones go to Presbyterian College for more 7-on-7 action on July 12 and go to a big tournament at Byrnes July 14 and 15.