The lights of Lugoff-Elgin Stadium have been turned off, the field grass is now dormant and the yard lines are slowly fading as the Lugoff-Elgin Demons 2008 football campaign is now in the books after a third round playoff loss to D. W. Daniel. Despite the disappointment of that loss, there is much to be celebrated from this year's season as we finished with a 9-4 record. This season marks only the fourth time in school history that we recorded nine wins and the first time since 1996.
The Demons would show early in the season that they would be a ground attack team as in the first game at White Knoll, LE would rush for over 300 yards. Contrast that by the Demon defense as they would limit the Timberwolves to only 155 yards.
With Lugoff-Elgin and Camden now in different regions, the county rivals would play in week four and see the Demons wrap up the third consecutive win over the rival Bulldogs, 21-7. LE's defense would use three Devonte Alexander intereceptions to stifle Camden drives.
If a region championship was to be won, you had to beat two tough opponents in Chester and Fairfield Central. Chester would show why they are playing in the state championship game for the second straight year as they came back from a 19-7 deficit late in the third quarter to defeat the Demons by three, 22-19. Turnovers and critical injuries to QB Forrest Koumas and OL Jacob Lynch would help the Cyclones in that game.
Fairfield Central would come to town on a night headlined by torrential rains and tropical storm force winds. On paper, it would appear the weather would help the Demons cause as LE could utilize the ground game and the weather could help stop the potent air attack of the Griffins. Once again, turnovers would cost Lugoff-Elgin. Five fumbles and one interception would stop any momentum LE could muster as the Demons would fall, 21-12. This despite LE ougaining FC by 65 yards and running seven more plays.
LE would use the final game of the regular season against A. C. Flora on Halloweeen as a tune up for the playoffs as they would dominate the Falcons, 51-0. LE would score early and often. Forrest Koumas would account for four scores - two on the ground and two through the air. In the win, the "Pain Train" defense would only allow three Flora first downs on the night.
Three thrilling comeback wins against West Florence, Chapin and Greer would help personify a Demon team that never gave up in any game played this year. In that first comeback, the Knights would tie the game at 14 in the third quarter only to see LE jump back out and win it by 10. Phillip Osborne would prove that a guy that is 5'2" and 150 pounds can play high school ball. The senior running back would have two long runs but none more electriying than his first. Ozzy would shed tacklers and drag defenders on his 71 yard rumble down the Demon sidelines for LE's first score on that sultry September night.
The homecoming crowd that came out when we played Chapin would get their money's worth. Chapin would hold a 24-21 lead late in the game as LE would get the go ahead score with only 1:26 left in the game. The Demons would ride the backs of running backs Phillip Osborne, Trent Hudson and E. J. Gripper as the trio would wear the Eagles defense down. LE would have to knock down a 50 yard pass into the end zone by Chapin as time expired to secure a Demon victory.
The first round of the playoffs would see us traveling to J. L. Mann. The homestanding Patriots finished second in their region while the Demons finished third in ours. The Patriots would be confident coming into the contest but any hopes of a win were quickly eroded. A fumble on Mann's second play from scrimmage would be recovered by Anthony Myers. Phillip Osborne would take off 73 yards for a Demon score just 50 seconds into the contest. LE would rack up a school record 525 yards rushing enroute to the 49-17 win.
Round two of the playoffs would have us visiting the tradition rich atmosphere of the Greer Yellow Jackets. Greer would have only one loss on their record going into the game played under foggy, rainy weather conditions. Lugoff-Elgin would be down by 20 points with just under two minutes left in the first half. LE would continue to fight through adversity and overcome a hostile Dooley Field atmosphere to beat the storied program, 43-40, in perhaps the most exciting win of Lugoff-Elgin football in several years.
The season would end at the hands of D. W. Daniel, 28-7. Once again, turnovers would help out the Lions cause as LE fumbled twice and threw two interceptions. Trent Hudson would tear a calf muscle on the third play from scrimmage to end the junior's night. Forrest Koumas would break his thumb on his throwing hand but he was able to come back and play tailback. Daniel's defense was the only team all year to stop Lugoff-Elgin as they limited our offense to 171 total offensive yards. LE's defense limited the potent Lion offense to only 242 yards on the night.
Our fans have been amazing all year long. You've traveled great distances to see the Demons play this year and endured all kinds of weather including stifling heat, rain, fog, tropical storm winds, and frigid temperatures. You have been vocal each game giving the players extra strength when they needed it.
Lugoff-Elgin set or tied 14 seperate school records this season, and had three firsts in school history. Here are some of the season's final numbers.
Accumulated 3632 rushing yards. Just 30 yards short of a school record. Averaged 279.4 rushing yards per game. That was less than three yards short of a school record. We scored 49 offensive touchdowns this year with 43 of those coming on the ground. The offensive line of Michael Branham, Colby Jones, Jacob Lynch, Jared Singleton, Nate Lark, and Bobby Geiger lived up to their nickname of "The Unit" and their motto of "We Just Mash'em."
Phillip Osborne-233 carries/1654 yds (7.1 ypc), 12 TD's
8 catches/34 yds. (4.4 ypc). Ozzy is #3 in the record books for single season rushing marks.
Trent Hudson-127 carries/1197 yds. (9.4 ypc), 15 TD's
12 catches/161 yds. (13.4 ypc), 1 TD. Hudson now sites at #7 for single season rushing yardage.
Forrest Koumas-78 carries/384 yds (4.7 ypc), 10 TD's
32 pass completions/92 attempts, 448 yds., 4 TD's, 5 int.
Julian Baxter - 7 catches/155 yds. (22.1 ypc), 3 TD's
You would be hard pressed to find a defense that was as dominating as this group was this year. The "Pain Train" defense accumulated 98 tackles for loss, 31 sacks, 50 pass break ups, 16 interceptions and three players recording over 100 tackles.
Campbell Connell - 135 tackles, 3 sacks
Ryan Wannamaker - 113 tackles, 1 int, 12 sacks, 27 tfl
Stephen Boneparte - 112 tackles, 3 sacks
Rakeem Hill - 86 tackles, 3 sacks
Julian Baxter - 81 tackles, 3 int's.
Darius Custard - 49 tackles, 2 int's, 5 sacks
Anthony Myers & Devonte Alexander with 5 int's. each.
-- Beat Camden three straight years
-- Had two 1000 yard rushers - Phillip Osborne & Trent Hudson
New School Records Set This Season
Most rushing yds. in a game - 525 vs. J. L. Mann
Fewest 1st downs allowed in a game - 3 vs. A. C. Flora
Most intereceptions in a season - 16 (tied-last set in 2002)
Most pts. scored in a playoff game - 49 vs. J. L. Mann
Largest margin of victory in a playoff game - 32 vs. J. L. Mann
Most pts. scored in 2 consecutive games - 100 vs. Flora & Mann
Most pts. scored in 3 consecutive games-143 (Mann, A. C. Flora, Greer)
Most extra pts. scored in a game-7 Grayson Quick (tied w/John York 2002 & Ricky Taylor 2005)
Most extra points in a season - 41, Grayson Quick
Most tackles for loss in a season - 27, Ryan Wannamaker
Most tackles for loss in career - 50, Ryan Wannamaker
Most interceptions in a game - 3, Devonte Alexander vs. Camden
Longest interception return - 96 yds. (for TD) vs. Chester, Julian Baxter
Most fumble recoveries in a game - 2 (tied), Darius Custard vs. BC
Post Season Honors
Shrine Bowl - Jared Singleton, Offensive Line
Region Defensive Player Of The Year - Ryan Wannamaker
Student Trainer in the North-South All Star Game - Morgan Blankenship
Jared Singleton is the first Shrine Bowl player for LE since 1999 when Ben Connell represented Lugoff-Elgin in the all star game.
Did you know that pro wrestler and Lugoff resident, Hacksaw Jim Duggan gave the pre game pep talk to the Demons prior to the Camden game?
By The Numbers - 5 out of 13 - Number of games played in rainy weather conditions this season.