PETTICOAT JUNCTION --- When Tiger Woods is playing in events leading up to the Masters Tournament, odds are good that he's working on shots that he knows he will need to be successful at Augusta National Golf Club.
Those shots might not help him win in a particular week, but the world's No. 1 golfer thinks they will pay off down the road.
The same principle can be applied to football.
Silver Bluff, for example, worked on its passing game en route to a 35-7 victory over Bishop England in the first round of the Class AA playoffs on Friday night.
The Bulldogs ran at will against the overmatched visitors from Charleston, S.C., but Silver Bluff coach Al Lown knows he will need a strong passing game if his team is to make a deep run in the playoffs.
"We threw the ball well in the spread tonight and that's something that will help us," he said. "We've been working on it knowing that next week and the weeks after that we're going to be outmatched physically. We're going to have to spread the field and throw the ball a little more. It was good to see us complete some good passes out of the spread tonight."
Cordrea Tankersley and Robert Green each scored two touchdowns in the first half as the Bulldogs (9-2) opened up a 28-0 halftime lead. Each reached the 100-yard mark in the first half.
The Bulldogs showed off their team speed in breaking three TDs of 35 yards or more. The final one, a 38-yard run by Andre Washington early in the third quarter, led to a running clock the rest of the game.
"We'll need speed to win the state championship," Tankersley said. "All the 100s and 200s we ran during summer workouts, they paid off tonight."
The Battling Bishops (4-7) struggled to mount many drives on the night, and only scored late in the game when Silver Bluff was substituting liberally.
The last two times the teams met, in a pair of playoff games, Bishop England prevailed.
"We're a little bit better team than we were back then and they don't have the quarterback they had back then," Lown said. "But still, you can't help but be a little bit nervous when they've got the jinx over you."
Reach John Boyette at (706) 823-3337 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
SILVER BLUFF 35, BISHOP ENGLAND 7
PLAY OF THE GAME: Cordrea Tankersley took an inside handoff and broke to the sideline, where he raced past a defender. He then cut back to the middle of the field, leaving a Bishop England player grabbing at air, to complete a 75-yard touchdown run.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: Tankersley, a nephew of former Silver Bluff and NFL star D'Wayne Bates , led the Bulldogs with 154 yards on seven carries.
WHY SILVER BLUFF WON: The Bulldogs dominated the line of scrimmage on both sides and had too many weapons.
WHY BISHOP ENGLAND LOST: The Battling Bishops could not match Silver Bluff's speed or athleticism.
NEXT: Silver Bluff will play host to Cheraw, a 34-7 winner over Waccamaw, Friday, 7:30.