War Eagles back in state finals

By Thomas Grant, Jr.

Domination is the best way to describe the postseason play of the spring sports teams at Gray Collegiate still remaining in the playoffs.

Leading the way is the boys soccer team which earned its third straight Class 2A championship game appearance. The 3-0 win over Greenville Tech was the fourth consecutive postseason shutout by the War Eagles, who have outscored their playoff opposition 21-0. 

Ironically, Gray Collegiate has posted 21 shouts this season not including the region forfeit wins.

This sets up another matchup with former sister school Oceanside Collegiate in the state final Saturday at Memorial Stadium. The Landsharks won last year’s meeting as well as State final matchups in baseball last year and football this year.

Gray Collegiate won the last two state final meetings in boys basketball.

This is Gray Collegiate head coach Kevin Heise’s 6th State championship appearance, three of Brookland-Cayce. 

“When we got to the locker room last year, I was like let’s get back and see what happens,” Heise said. “We’ve had other guys that had to step up all year. We will be ready to roll on Saturday.” 


The War Eagles opened the Class 2A District 4 playoffs in dramatic fashion.

Down 4-1 to Liberty, Gray Collegiate got a 2-run single by M.J. Hornsby in the Bottom 6th. In the Bottom 7th, L.J. Holley scored on a wild pitch to tie the game and Blaine Redmond came home with the winning run on a wild pitch for the 5-4 win.

It was a more one-sided affair in the 11-1 win over Saluda. Zeb Taylor and Riley Higgins both drove in two runs and Drew Webber went 3-4 with an RBI in support of winning pitcher Redmond.

Gray Collegiate played host to Batesburg-Leesville Tuesday in the District final.


Entering Wednesday’s District 4 Final against Ninety-Six, the Lady War Eagles are riding a 16-game winning streak (5 forfeited wins) and have outscored their first two playoff opponents 32-3.

In the 17-3 win over Great Falls, Kaylan Boudreau went 4-4 with five RBI and a 2-run homer. Maddox Long also homered and drove in four runs and Peyton Hendrix had three RBI and struck out nine in three innings.

She and Long swung the hot bat again in the 15-0 win in three innings over Ninety-Six. Hendrix, who struck out five in two innings, went 2-3 with three RBI and Long was 3-3 with four RBI, including a solo home run.

Kayla Anderson went 2-2 with three RBI, including a 2-run homer and Braelyn Triplett went 2-3 with two RBI and a home run.

All pictures by George Matsui