CHARLESTON, S.C. (WSAV) – Thomas Heyward’s state championship streak has been broken.

The Rebels were unable to overcome the Lee Academy Cavaliers, losing 28-0 to bring their run of consecutive state titles to an end at four.

Fate dealt Thomas Heyward a blow in its very first series, when star fullback and linebacker Anthony Fripp left the game with an injury. Freshman tight end Tony O’Banner would also suffer a game-ending injury later on, leaving the Rebels with less than 20 active players on the roster.

Lee Academy relied heavily on running back Deshon Hadden, who scored three touchdowns on the day. It was Hadden who burst into the end zone from 31 yards away to break a scoreless tie early in the second quarter. Hadden then followed that up with another touchdown run from 18 yards away with just over six minutes to go until halftime.

Quarterback Dietrich Shuford was able to get the Rebels in the red zone twice. The first came just before halftime, but the Rebels failed to convert on fourth down when a shot to junior Cutter Williams got broken up. Thomas Heyward went into the locker room trailing 14-0.

The second opportunity arrived in the final minute of the third quarter with Heyward down 21-0. Lee Academy sacked Shuford and forced a fumble, which Hadden recovered. Hadden would score a touchdown on the ensuing drive, his third of the day, from two yards away to ice the game away for Lee.

“Their heart and their determination never waivered all year,” head coach Nic Shuford said. “Not many people gave us a chance to be back on this field. They played with that chip on their shoulder and came to work every day.”