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June 24, 2018

MEDIA DAY: Irmo TB Shakem Bradley

MidlandsHighSchoolSports.com talked with Irmo rising senior Shakem Bradley, a 5-10, 175-pound 2nd-year starter at tailback, at Sunday’s Media Day at the USC practice facility.  

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MEDIA DAY: Irmo CB Zafir Kelly

MidlandsHighSchoolSports.com talked with Irmo rising senior Zafir Kelly, a 6-1, 165-pound 3rd-year starter at cornerback, at Sunday’s Media Day at the USC practice facility.  

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Irmo’s Kennedy excited about 2016 Yellow Jackets

Entering his third year as the head coach and AD at Irmo, Reggie Kennedy is quietly excited about a Yellow Jacket football team that is flying under the radar but just may be a big (and pleasant) surprise once the 2016 season gets underway. MidlandsHighSchoolSports.com talked with the veteran coach during high school Media Day at the USC indoor practice facility on Sunday.    

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Whipple praises his state runner-up Yellow Jackets for season-long improvement

Irmo basketball coach Tim Whipple had nothing but praise for his Yellow Jackets (24-5) after falling 57-50 to a highly-skilled, physically-gifted and well-coached Byrnes High team in the 4A state finals at Colonial Life Arena on Friday night. The championship game appearance was an unexpected finish for a team which unexpectedly lost guard Devontae Shuler, all-state as a sophomore last year, to transfer in late August and then opened the season with only three wins in its first six games. But after that 3-3 start, the Yellow Jackets were all but invincible, winning 21 of 22 games the rest of the way (undefeated since Dec. 28’s 53-49 road loss at Eastside) to earn the Lower State title and berth in the finals. The streak came to an end on Friday, however, as Byrnes (25-4) outscored Irmo 34-14 inside and ruled the boards with 42 rebounds to Irmo’s 21, including a whopping 20 on the offensive glass. With predictable dignity and class, Whipple praised the Rebels, giving the Upper State champs their…

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Irmo’s Whipple is “Crescent Construction Coach of the Week”

It should be no surprise that the Irmo basketball team is playing in the 4A state semi-finals on Saturday against West Ashley at the Florence Civic Center. After all, it’s the fourth time in six years that the Yellow Jackets have made it this far in the playoffs. But when the uber-talented Davontae Shuler, currently rated as the #5 point guard in the southeast by ESPN.com, abruptly left Irmo and enrolled at perennial national power Oak Hill (Mouth of Wilson, VA) in early September after being one of S.C.’s top players as a sophomore, very few observers thought the Shuler-less Yellow Jackets would be state championship contenders come late February. But here they are. Again. The common denominator to the Irmo basketball team’s success over these past six years, or more precisely, the last 35 years, is Yellow Jackets’ Hall of Fame coach Tim Whipple. With five state championship rings and a career record of 697-259, including a remarkable 102-10 record over the past four seasons, Whipple’s resume confirms his…

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Ta’Vonne Bond is the “CiCi’s Pizza Irmo Athlete of the Week”

Irmo guard Ta’Vonne Bond made his own 18th birthday a little bit sweeter on Tuesday night with a memorable shooting performance, scoring 23 points on a mere 10 shots from the floor to lead the Yellow Jackets to a 61-45 win over Carolina Forest. Bond and his teammates move on to face West Ashley on Saturday night in the 4A Lower State championship at the Florence Civic Center. The birthday boy was at his best when the Yellow Jackets needed him the most. Carolina Forest had pulled within 36-28 by virtue a 10-3 run early in the third quarter with momentum clearly swinging in their favor when Bond took over the game. The 6-2 senior drained his first of three consecutive 3-pointers to begin a 15-0 Irmo run that ended with his tip-in of a teammates miss and included a 30-foot bank shot at the end of the third quarter, and when the smoke had cleared, the Jackets were suddenly up 51-28 with the outcome firmly in hand. Bond, the…

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Irmo’s Kennedy hopeful team turned corner in huge win over Spring Valley

Irmo got off to a tough 0-3 start this season as a result of an early-season schedule that included opening with back-to-back games against powerful York and Northwestern before suffering a heartbreaking 47-41 loss to Ridge View after leading 27-7 at halftime. Subsequently, a road match-up this past Friday with then-unbeaten (3-0) Spring Valley had the prospect of an 0-4 start looking very likely. Yellow Jacket coach Reggie Kennedy and his players had other plans, however, and when the smoke had cleared, Irmo had earned a hard-fought 21-20 win over the Vikings. Kennedy is understandably proud of his team’s defying the odds against the heavily-favored Vikings, perhaps a sign that the Yellow Jackets may have indeed turned the corner in their second season under the veteran coach’s direction. It will not get any easier this Friday when Kennedy and his Jackets (1-3) travel to Blythewood (3-1) in search of their second upset in as many weeks.  

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Ronnie Jamison is “CiCi’s Pizza Irmo Athlete of the Week”

Irmo’s Ronnie Jamison was the focal point of the Yellow Jacket’s offense as a junior tailback last season, but while remaining the Jackets’ biggest threat this fall, he has assumed the position of quarterback for coach Reggie Kennedy’s team. While he gets better by the day in the passing game, the 6-1, 200-pounder has already established himself as an athletic, slippery runner when he tucks it runs upfield, and with a high football IQ and a great feel for the game, the senior is sure to have his share of highlite-real plays this season for the Yellow Jacket offense. We feel Jamison is generally overlooked by most of the media and “evaluators” out there, and can be as effective a runner from the QB position as anyone in the area. If he is able to refine his passing game and be more consistent finding his receivers, Jamison can be in the conversation as one of the best ‘All-around” quarterbacks in the area. Jamison showed flashes of what he can do…

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Super soph Devontae Shuler is “CiCi’s Pizza Irmo Athlete of the Week”

Devontae Shuler has been a scoring machine for the Yellow Jackets, averaging well over 25 points in Irmo’s eight games. Tuesday night, Shuler’s 21 points led a balanced Irmo attack in which five players reached double figures, as the Yellow Jackets cruised past Spring valley 87-76.

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Whipple’s potent Irmo squad tops Spring Valley 87-76

For the first time in his storied career, Irmo head coach Tim Whipple doesn’t have a single returning starter in the Yellow Jackets’ line-up. But that doesn’t mean his team can’t score. The Jackets are averaging 80.3 ppg in their six wins, a surprisingly high number for a Whipple-coached team. Conversely, Irmo has scored only 60 and 55 points in its’ two losses. The Yellow Jackets avenged one of those defeats Tuesday night against Spring Valley. After dropping a 65-60 decision to the Vikings on Dec. 2, the Yellow Jackets ran away with an 87-76 victory last night, scoring 50 first half points and cruising the rest of the way.

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